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Southern California Job Market : A Special Report On Employment Trends : Finding A Job : Taking Time Off For Elvis

September 20, 1987|From United Press International

For some Americans, getting a job with a steady income and the usual benefits isn't enough. They want Elvis Presley's birthday off, too--with pay.

That's just one of the requests that emerged in a survey of unusual demands that people make when they are about to accept a job. The survey was released last month by the personnel recruiting firm of Robert Half Inc. of New York.

Others' requests included a man who asked for a three-week paid vacation, to be taken before his first day on the job, and an applicant who asked for a paid membership to the city zoo for the entire family.

There was also the worker who refused to take any job that wasn't within walking distance of an Italian or Chinese restaurant and another who wanted to be paid for any time spent "thinking about work" at night or on weekends.

The survey, conducted by telephone with executives and personnel officials at 100 U.S. companies during early 1987, was commissioned by Robert Half and done by Burke Market Research of Cincinnati.

Robert Half, president of the personnel firm, said that it is possible that some of the unusual stories "might have lost a little in the translation" as they were passed around among executives.

Several employers in the survey recalled job applicants who asked for specific days off with pay in addition to their birthdays, such as Elvis Presley's birthday; the first day of the World Series; Bastille Day, the French equivalent of America's July 4, and in every leap year, February 29.

Half said it is not a good idea to go to a job interview with a list of such demands.

"The bottom line is that the unrealistic and self-defeating attitudes they reflect are not likely to result in a successful job search or career," he said.

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