Can you fill the gap? The gap an employer has between right now and when he finds the perfect employee to fill the position he has open? Create a short-term job, temporary work for yourself.
We’ve been moving a lot lately. We’ve seen a lot of help wanted signs along the way. These jobs are not specifically being advertised to working RVers. But, you may be the person the employer needs. Although the employer ultimately wants a permanent employee to fill the position, maybe a short-term person would work to fill the gap until he finds the right someone to hire permanently.
These may be jobs you don’t want for a full time career. But they would be okay for a few weeks. In that temporary, short-term context, most jobs can be fun.
Here at the truck stop, they need a dishwasher immediately, and a waitress. The manager may not know he wants an RVer to work for a few weeks until you let him know he needs you. Explain the advantages of hiring you. With you filling the gap, there's less pressure to make the first warm body that walks in the door a permanent hire. Let him know you can cover the position until he gets a person he thinks is right for the job long-term.
Yes, you’ll need a place to park. At truck stops, that likely isn't a problem. You don’t need water and sewer if there is a place to fill and dump once in a while. One of your benefits could be complimentary showers in the truck stop. Restaurant workers usually get some free or discounted meals, and maybe you can get a discount at the convenience store.
Before you make yourself indispensable, check out where you might be working. Eat at the restaurant a time or better two. Is this a place you would like to work? Are the other employees people you could work with? Are the customers people you would like to serve? Look around the area to see if there is a place you would prefer to park so you can suggest it. Park overnight, if you can, or at least drive by at night. Is the area well lit and safe feeling, or is it creepier than a dark Chicago alley at night? Of course, make sure you can do the job without a lot of training. Washing dishes takes some common sense, but not a lot of experience. Waiting tables may take some prior experience to do a good job. Cashier at the fuel desk or convenience store may take some training.
I used working at a truck stop as an example. But there are many other businesses that need people to fill gaps between regular employees. The fact that you want to do temporary work frees the employer to hire you without making a long-term agreement. Be sure to note the part about how you need to know how to do the job, because on short-term deals like this, there isn't much time for training. Be honest about how much time you will commit.
It may be that the manager agrees he wants you to work for the interim, but he requires you to go through a specific temporary staffing agency. He may do that to simplify his paperwork and bookkeeping, and to keep things legal.
Coleen's comments: My husband, Bob Nilles, wrote this article about working as a fill-in employee, to fill the gap between permanent hires. He used the truck stop example because we are parked for the night at truck stop -- a truck stop that is very short staffed. One of the key components to making this work is to have experience and knowhow to do the job. If you have restaurant, motel, or retail store experience, you have an edge. Another characteristic you need to make this work is self-confidence and the willingness to present yourself as a solution to the employer's staffing woes.