Sunday, August 12, 2007

Has America changed?

As we made a trip, as far too many old married couples do on a Friday night, to the local Menard's store I asked the missus a question which I frankly haven't had the intestinal fortitude to do before tonight in serious fashion.

"What is your second career choice?"

This question was meant with silence and then the response of "I don't know, when I chose this before I started college, there were plenty of jobs advertised in the newspaper."

If you're unfamiliar, the wife has a Bachelor's degree in Fine Arts with a focus on Graphic Design/Graphic Arts. Essentially, she has the more advanced version of my college degree but I am the one with the job in that particular field. But back to the conversation.

She continued, in a flustered state of disbelief, by saying "I don't know what really happened."

Of course, I was quick to respond.

"September 11th, 2001 happened. No matter how rosy people paint the economy and the job market and its growth, the growth isn't in professional areas like ours. I remember how easy it was to find graphic design jobs before that day."

I really do remember how much things changed almost instantly on that day. Advertising, which is truly the lifeblood of many graphic designers/artists, thrives on a strong economy. It's pretty damn simple to figure out. If people have money, they buy stuff which keeps businesses open and they can afford to have fantastic sales and promote the hell out of their establishment. All is good for me. People buy houses and cars, Sornie gets some overtime and a nice stack of his own benjamins to stimulate the economy. Advertising starts to stack up and maybe a new position gets created allowing the wife to get her foot in the door at some prestigious ad agency.

But on 9/11/01 people got scared. They stayed at home. They closed up their billfolds. As people spent less on "luxury items" (i.e. cars, bigger houses) those core pools of ad dollars dried up. Energy (fuel) prices went up too. People stuck with their older cars and insulated the house they had instead of moving on up the ole' property ladder. Sornie's overtime dried up and the old lady stayed at her job she took in lieu of a job in design as the openings for graphic designers shrunk as companies downsized in the wake of less advertising dollars being spent.

Long story short, that's why it's been simply brutal and borderline excruciating for the missus to nail down a graphic design job.

But what can y'all do? You can drop me a line about openings for the missus in the graphic design world in the best damn city in all of America for graphic design and printing -- the good ole' Twin Cities!


Balou said...

I didn't know you were a GD. Me too. I watch the ads just to see what's out there. I don't know of any specific openings that she'd want but a few cold call resumes and checking Craigslist, Monster, Careerbuilder & the AIGA of MN sites would be my suggestion.

Blondie said...

Seems 9/11 hit most industries pretty badly. Communications quite a bit, too... though I'm sure you wouldn't expect it.

If you're feelin' frisky, I tagged you for a meme on my page.

Dorky Dad said...

Wow. I feel your wife's pain. I wish I had contacts in that area to help but alas I do not. Oftentimes the job market up here in the Twin Cities when it comes to jobs like that is an absolute bear.