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Social media manager shares ingenious way to say no to unpaid work and interview demands gracefully

A social media manager shares her tactful approach to declining unpaid work and interview requests while also maintaining professionalism.

Social media manager shares ingenious way to say no to unpaid work and interview demands gracefully
Cover Image Source: TikTok/@workwithalessandra

The job market is a brutal place. Job-seekers have to present themselves as valuable assets to the company amidst cut-throat competition and somehow come out on top. While it's somewhat fair to keep candidates on their toes, companies have begun to take advantage of them during the application process. TikTok user @workwithalessandra is exposing organizations and their questionable interview practices in her recent video on the platform. She utilizes the video to share how to professionally turn down requests for unpaid work during interviews. 

Image Source: TikTok/@workwithalessandra
Image Source: TikTok | @workwithalessandra

She begins the video by stating that she works in the social media marketing industry. The woman then shares how she was applying for a job that happened to have three rounds of interviews. She says, "And then, they hit me with a project so out of pocket that I need to share with the fellow creatives on this app." The woman explains how companies make these requests to steal a person's creative ideas on the premise of testing them for a job.

Image Source: TikTok/@workwithalessandra
Image Source: TikTok | @workwithalessandra

She then shares a screenshot of the specific request that the organization made. They wanted her to make a one-week calendar that planned their posts unique to their brand. She says, "Absolutely insane." She elaborates on how the company wanted details about the hashtags and when the posts would go up in a presentation. What's even more shocking is that they gave her a two-day deadline for all the work.

Image Source: TikTok/@workwithalessandra
Image Source: TikTok | @workwithalessandra

 

Image Source: TikTok/@xoxocowgirlrach
Image Source: TikTok | @xoxocowgirlrach

 

Image Source: TikTok/@tkyle
Image Source: TikTok | @tkyle

The woman then warns other job candidates not to fall for the trap. She concludes by saying she would make another video to inform her users how to appropriately say no to organizations that attempt to take advantage of job seekers. Sure enough, she delivers another video on turning down a company's exploitative testing process gracefully.

Image Source: TikTok/@workwithalessandra
Image Source: TikTok | @workwithalessandra

She says, "The amount of times I've been asked to do a crazy big project for someone I don't even work for is like really insulting." The woman shares that she has reused a standard message in such situations over many job applications over the years. Viewers then get to see a concise letter in the video. The letter details how she has gone through the scope of the project and has to "respectfully decline completing the project."

Image Source: TikTok/@workwithalessandra
Image Source: TikTok | @workwithalessandra

 

The letter then specifies how she has a competent portfolio of all the work that she has done over nine years in the marketing industry. So, she would be willing to tell them about what she did for different positions. The letter reads, "I am confident this will effectively showcase my ability to adeptly tailor brand voices and aesthetics." It also mentions that she was willing to "verbally outline" her approach to the requested project.

Image Source: TikTok/@workwithalessandra
Image Source: TikTok | @workwithalessandra

 

Image Source: TikTok/@candicehamlin
Image Source: TikTok | @candicehamlin

 

Image Source: TikTok/@barcatalkpodcast
Image Source: TikTok | @barcatalkpodcast

The letter concludes by saying that she would like to withdraw her application if her requests were a "dealbreaker" and thanking them for their consideration and time. Individuals on the platform appreciated the letter and expressed their thoughts about the exploitative interview process in the comments section. @madeleinewilsonphoto commented, "I will never understand why they ask for a portfolio if they still want you to 'prove' yourself with a project. Like, HOW is my portfolio not enough." 

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