Author: martinblaauw

It all went well, and I’m holding thumbs

Last week I had my third interview with Disney Cruise Line for a position I applied for.  There were certain things that counted in my favor, and others perhaps not so much, but overall I think this position suits me very well, and i will be able to make a huge success of it.  I have a good feeling about this one!

The manager with whom I had the interview was kind and very straight forward and open.  You see, that is what I have loved through each recruitment process I have gone through with DCL: You always have a good idea of where you stand, what their expectations are and what opportunities there are for you.

If the recruitment process is this well organised, I cannot wait to be a part of the company as a crew member and experience what working for Disney must truly be like.

For now I am still waiting for a decision to be made, as there is a team of people who will make the call.  I should know within a week or two whether I have made the giant leap into my dream career, working for the dream company!

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Another step forward to reaching my dream

People say it’s not how fast you get there, all that matters is that you keep moving forward, one step at a time.

In making my dream to work for DCL come true, I have taken another positive step forward.  I have been through two rounds of interviews, and the next big one is this week.  If I understand the process correctly, this will be the deciding one.

I am nervous, but the good kind of nervous.  I am confident that I meet the requirements of the job, and that I am a suitable person to work in the industry.  This is make or break week!

I think the time is right now as well.  Although there is a possibility of romance in my life, which there hasn’t been before, he understands that this is my dream, and his situation doesn’t allow us to be together now either.  In terms of my finances I am at a better place now as well, and I even have the prospect of people who would like to rent or even buy my house when I go work overseas.

My ex and I have agreed that he would be moving his things out the house when he is back in November, so one less thing to worry about.

There are still a couple of loose ends I need to get tied up before being completely ready to go, but I think all of that can be done well ahead of time.  After all, I am not sure that I have the job just yet, but things are falling in to place to be ready.

Once I know the outcome after this week’s interview, I will update my blog again, so it might be a couple of days.  When successful, I would probably still have to wait several months and go through a whole other process before I can go, including a full medical, police clearance etc.

Will keep you updated!

THE IGNITED SPIRIT OF PERSEVERANCE

THE IGNITED SPIRIT OF PERSEVERANCE

These kinds of inspiring posts give me the confidence to keep on working on making my dream a reality!

I am working on this dream as we speak, with some exciting things happening at the moment in terms of an upcoming interview and an opportunity that might just make this dream of mine come true! When I have more news I will share the excitement with you all.

Thank you Abhijith Padmakumar for continuing to inspire! If you are reading this, I strongly recommend that you go follow his blog.

The Motivational Blog

If you believe in something so badly that you are so desperate to achieve it, then nothing in this world can stop you from obtaining it. That is what I believe and that belief has always given me confidence to move forward in life.

There are lots of obstructions in life. Difficulties that will slow you down and decrease your determination to thrive ahead. They come to our lives in the form of negative people, bad luck, rejections – at the most unfortunate circumstances.

Life you knock you down so many times that you will sometimes literally forget the taste of success and achievement. It will tear your soul and make you believe that you are not capable of anything.

There is only one thing to do and that is this – don’t lose hope and keep trying. Keep working day and night and whenever you can. Just forget the…

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Will this be my “Big Break”?

Over the last several months, I have been applying for jobs in the cruise industry left, right and center.  I have had several interviews, can complete an online application with my eyes closed and have several copies of my cover letter and résumé, customised for each cruise line and position that I have applied for.

None have been successful.

As I mentioned in a previous post, each and every position that I have applied for was a position where I felt I could make a success of it with my current knowledge, background and experience.  In fact, I know that I would make a success of each and every one of them, given the chance to prove myself.

The standard reply on each of them were: “We have stronger candidates who meet the requirements of the position better and you are no longer considered at this time.” – or something to this effect.

To say it is discouraging is an understatement of note.  It takes strong discipline, motivation and sometimes madness to keep on going and not give up.  I haven’t given up!

I recently customised my documentation for yet another angle to take on getting a foot in the door in the cruise industry.  This time, I focused on the things I have solid experience in, through the employer I have been with for the last 11 years.  I was fortunate to have it sent to the relevant people directly, and they thought my résumé good enough to at least have an initial telephonic “meet and greet” – the first interview of what I would imagine be a couple at least to follow.

Will this be my “big break” that I have been praying, asking and begging for someone to give to me?  Do we absolutely have to rely on someone giving you that big break?  Why do we find it so difficult to get somewhere in life without someone giving you that opportunity?  Surely my track record, experience, attitude and values should be enough to make my dream come true without having to rely on that?  How do we make recruiters, interviewers and potential new managers understand what our competencies are and that we are suitable for the position – in fact, not only suitable for the position, but to stand out in the crowd of sometimes thousands of applicants, and convince them that we are the best candidate for the position?

There are two schools of thought here:  The first is the almost cliché “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.”  The second is that you determine your own destiny, and that you cannot rely on other people to make it happen for you.

I believe that being successful calls for both, at various times in your life.  Sometimes you have to rely on someone else to give you that chance, and sometimes you have to outright ask for it.  The key is that you need to make them understand that, in other words, you determine what they think of you, that they understand you are the best candidate for the job, and that you will be successful.  As the person applying for the new job, you are ultimately the one determining your own destiny.

How do we bridge this gap, and make that happen?  Confidence without being arrogant, doing your research about the requirements of the job, good communication, good first impressions, be honest, be friendly, smile.  These are all examples of advice that you will find when you read articles about how to get the job.  But they do not answer that question, how do you convince the recruiter/interviewer that you are their perfect candidate, and convince them to give you that chance to prove yourself?

I haven’t found the answer yet.  If you have, and you are willing to share it with me and the people who read my blog, please leave your comment below.

Because I’m HAPPY!

 

I have been thinking about what happiness really means for quite some time.  Was it to have enough money?  Was it to work in a job that you truly enjoy doing?  Was it finding the right partner?  Was it being healthy?  It was NONE of these things!

Happiness is to be positive, to be humble, kind, forgiving and grateful.  Happiness is to give, and not to receive.

You see, happiness is not something that you can buy with money.  Happiness is what you make of the challenges life presents.  For the first time in many years, I am starting to feel what it is like to be happy again, and although this did not come entirely from within myself, it was a conscious decision.

Can other people make you happy?  Yes and no.  Let me start with the “no” part: If you are not happy with and within yourself, nothing will make you happy.  Now let’s look at the “yes” part.  Other people can’t make you happy per se, but, they can influence your decision to be happy.  You see, positive and happy people are contagious, so if you are already working on your happiness, all it takes is one happy person to be that catalyst and you can unlock your happiness from within.

I recently met a happy person.  A person who is at peace with themselves, the decisions and even mistakes they made in the past, and generally has a positive and can-do attitude towards everything they do.  It’s a person that is funny, positive and who appreciates what they have.  I have been looking for such a person because they are few and far between, but now that I found this person, they brought out the happiness in me too.

You can also be happy.  Everyone can!  Make the decision, think positive thoughts, and go out and look for people that are truly happy.  You can spot them a mile away!  Associate yourself with them, spend time with them, and get to know them.

Being specific and my view on mediocrity

Being specific and my view on mediocrity

WD Do it wellIf there is one thing that I despise, its mediocrity – both in other people and in myself.

The things in my past which I regret the most, were things I did without really being passionate about doing, which led to a mediocre attempt at best.

WD Get back up

The thing that gets me the most irritated with people in all aspects of daily life is mediocrity – the mediocre attitude towards customer service, the mediocre attitude towards doing your job, the mediocre attitude of relationships (both platonic friendships and more romantic ones).

quote-about-mediocrity-600x375quote-Sean-Penn-theres-a-lot-of-mediocrity-being-celebrated-205628

In my quest to find my dream job, I refuse to be mediocre!   I am specific about which jobs I apply for, not because I think I am better than anyone else, or discriminate against people who are willing to do certain jobs, but because I only apply for jobs that I know I will not be mediocre at.  I apply for positions which I know I can do (and do well), ones I will be good at, ones that I have a real interest in, and ones that I know I will always do my best.  That does not mean I know the in’s and out’s of every specific job, but I know something about it, and can learn the rest.

TalentWD do the impossible

It’s a choice, after all, to do your best, to set your personal standards, and to not be mediocre.

Why so much details?

You might ask why I went into so much detail telling the story of my two trips.  Well, I actually already answered the question, as I alluded to the fact of what impact the entire Disney experience has had on me.

 

However, it is more than just the impact it had on me.  As mentioned in a previous post, each time I experienced Disney (and especially Disney Cruise Line), a little piece of me remained behind on the ship when I returned back home.

It was during the launch, trans-Atlantic cruise and christening of the Disney Fantasy, that the penny dropped with me that I wanted to be part of the Magic of Disney.

Your next question may be: “Why only now”?

I can think up several excuses which I used both in the past and now, but I came to realise that at some point I had to do something pro-active to make my dreams come true.  I think in a way, seeing how (relatively) easy it was for my partner (now ex partner) to get a job with DCL, made me realise that I too can achieve that dream.  In a sense, I thought it was out of my reach previously, but I believe wholeheartedly that this is a dream that can, and will, come true for me.  I have never been so determined, passionate and set on making something that I really want to come true, and I am taking proactive steps to make it happen, not just sitting back and waiting for it to come my way.

It hasn’t been an easy task so far, as I have been turned down several times already, but I am determined to keep on applying for available positions, as I know there is a position waiting for me there, at the right time, and at the right place, when it is meant to be.

One day, I will be reunited with the part of me that stayed behind at Disney Cruise Line.

My second overseas trip (last part)

My friend and I departed for Atlanta the next day, where we stayed with my friend’s cousin for a few days (I can’t remember how long exactly, but it wasn’t very long).

I remember how we hid away at the back of the house that evening when our host arrived home after work, as he did not know we were there, and it was a surprise to him.  We had arranged with his wife to pick us up from the airport.  After he had entered the house, we snuck around to the front door and rang the doorbell.  The look on our host’s face when he opened the door and saw his cousin standing there all the way from South Africa was priceless!

The next day, we were taken into Atlanta town, where we bought a day pass to see the Aquarium, the Coca Cola museum and have a tour of the CNN Building.  We also spent some time looking at the various sculptures at the Centennial Olympic Park.  Really a fun day to end off our almost month long vacation before heading home.

That was the last time I was overseas, now more than 5 years ago.  With both my first and second overseas trips, I left a piece of my heart behind, and my heart has been longing to go back there again ever since.  More about that in my next post…