Patrick Hoagland had spent weeks applying for jobs online and in-person before panic started creeping up at the lack of response. He had a family to support, after all, and with no income on his end, he was getting desperate.
A few months ago, the Arizona dad was working a steady job as a forklift operator at a metal recycling company. Unfortunately, he was laid off last month and hasn’t been able to find other employment through the traditional route. He had to find another way fast.
“I definitely had fear,” Patrick said.” “My wife and I, we don’t make a whole lot of money individually. Once I lost my job, everything was put on her.”
That’s when the 30-year-old decided to get creative. Patrick printed out 200 copies of his résumé and took to the streets of Phoenix, braving the sweltering heat for three days in his quest to find a job. For hours each day, he held a sign up to passing cars that read, “Please take a resume. Laid-off. Looking for a job.”
As luck would have it, the sign caught Melissa Di Gianfilippo’s eye as she drove past during her lunch break. She co-owns a Phoenix marketing firm called Serendipit Consulting and was so impressed by Patrick’s creativity and determination she grabbed a résumé for herself.
While Patrick’s experience wasn’t a good fit for her company, the well-connected woman figured someone in her professional network might be interested. So she snapped photos of Patrick and his resume, then shared them on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn
“I was driving down Camelback Rd in Phx near my office and saw this guy on the side of the road with a smile in 110-degree heat, with a sign asking people to take his resume,” she wrote. “I love that he was not asking for a handout, just for people to consider him for a job.”
And the response was incredible, especially on LinkedIn, where Melissa’s post went viral. Not only did Patrick receive thousands of messages from businesses, contractors, recruiters, and well-wishers, but he was soon flooded with hundreds of job offers!
“It was crazy. It was hard to navigate my phone for a little bit, but I received so many great offers,” Patrick said. “I received offers from companies that wouldn’t hire you without experience, but because they saw my determination, they offered me a position without even an interview.”
After pouring over each offer, Patrick found the perfect fit: a job as a concrete grinder at Flatline Concrete. And he can’t thank Melissa and everyone else who showed their support enough.
“[Melissa] has been so great, she didn’t need to help me, but she did and it has changed my life,” Patrick added. “I am so grateful for her.”
As we come across struggling people in our own lives, let’s keep in mind how just a little help can make all the difference. Share this story to encourage others to do the same.
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