Getting What You Want
November 2, 2009 5 Comments
This post was inspired by conversations with co-workers over the course of the past week, as well as a post by Jessie at Jessie’s Money. Gotta give credit where it is due, right?
Since I’ve “put myself out there” for tutoring, I get probably about 4-7 emails a week from students asking me for tutoring. I currently have 3 regular clients that I meet with Sunday, Monday and Tuesday evenings. I prepare for my class on Wednesday and teach on Thursday. And then Friday and Saturday I spend with Mr. Cousin. So I’m not really in the market to pick up another tutoree.
I mentioned in a previous post that my labmate has been complaining about not having enough money. There are a few reasons for this – but mainly that he is living in an apartment that is too big for just him and he doesn’t want to go about finding another roommate (he’s been through 2 in the past two years).
So I’ve been sending him some of the tutoring emails that I get for classes that I know he would be interested in. Mainly because, I know he needs the money and I can’t take them.
Eventually on Wednesday he asked me: “How are you getting all these requests for tutoring?”
At first I was baffled.
Then I realized that just because I have the initiative to put my name out there didn’t mean that he did. So I told him what I did: I did a Swagbucks search for our university + chemistry + tutoring. From there a tutor list came up that only had graduate students on it. So I emailed the contact on the page and asked them to put me on it. Simple.
And he looked at me like he couldn’t believe I had the balls to do it.
A year ago I wanted a teaching position at the local community college in town. So I SCOURED the internet trying to find the name and email address of the chair. It actually took me about 3 days of internet searching to find this information because it isn’t readily available on the colleges website.
I emailed him asking for a teaching position with my resume. He politely turned me down saying there were no positions.
I emailed him a few months later asking about the next semester. No response.
I emailed him a month after that asking again about the next semester. No response.
A month later he asked me if I was available to substitute for him – with no promise of a class. I of course jumped at the opportunity.
Two months later I asked again about the next semester. I got a class.
Moral of the Stories
1) You have to GO AFTER what you want
You can’t just sit around on your ass and wait for money to fall into your lap. With very, very rare exceptions this will NEVER happen. If you want an extra job to get more money – GO AFTER IT.
2) Be persistant
Just because you’re told no once doesn’t mean that the answer will always be no. If I had thrown my hands in the air and given up the first time I was rejected by the chair at the community college I wouldn’t be teaching now. And I wouldn’t be in a position to teach two classes next semester.
3) If you don’t ask, the answer is NO
My dad used to tell me this all the time – and now I truly believe it. If you don’t ask for a raise, the answer will (usually) be no. If you don’t ask for teaching position, no one is going to come to you begging you to do it. If you don’t ask for a rent decrease it isn’t likely you’ll be given one. If you don’t ask – things won’t just magically happen.
4) Know what you want
If you don’t know what you want, it is hard to ask for it. So take some time. Sit down. Figure out WHAT YOU WANT. And then figure out how to get it. And follow steps 1-3 until you do. 😉
Okay… I’m stepping off my soap box. But remember – you can get what you want – most of the time it just takes a little work.