I've interviewed twice at both places. Both are office manager/sales support positions, one for a new residential real estate group, and one for the what-the-heck-are-hydraulics-anyway? manufacturing/distribution plant. WHEEE.
However, both jobs will mean a significant step down in quality of life, either because of where the job is located and the commute (the hydraulics job, which is in the ghettoooooo and really really far away) or because no benefits equals out to a really major pay cut (at least $5000/year for health insurance alone for me, which, um, CANNOT AFFORD OMG) in the real estate job.
And I need to decide... BY NOON ON FRIDAY. Meaning, IN JUST A FEW HOURS. And I think I really have to take one or the other, because it took a month of solid interviewing so far to get a nibble. :-/
I was counter-offering most of the day and now have Final Bottom Line Offer from the real estate company (and they kind of told me that I'm way overpaid and will be way overpaid and that I should be willing to kill myself for less money for The Dream Of The Start-Up Company). No benefits, no paid time off, no flex scheduling, nothing. Wheeee. However, the job is in a more desirable location (across from my sister's office!) and it's still in real estate, which makes it really obvious next step on the resume. I would learn a lot, it would be challenging, and I would be kind of starving and living off ramen because, frustratingly, without company-paid benefits, a fucking third of my salary will be going to all my stupid medical expenses and buying ridiculously expensive COBRA insurance because I can't get insurance on my own. (WHY is it so freaking expensive for me to just NOT DIE!?)
I don't have a final offer from the hydraulics place, but all signs point to it being slightly less money than my current job, and slightly suckier benefits, but not enough to make that much of a difference. The downside of this job is that it's in the industrial ghetto, it's far as hell from where I live, there is absolutely nothing out there (not even a coffee shop! just self-serve auto wrecking!), and the job itself... will probably be pretty miserable. I will get to design my own job position, I will learn new things and be working in a new industry (which will actually be an industry), my managers are really cool, but a lot of the job will be repetitive (but with a zillion deadlines), I'll have to deal with 90% paperwork and 10% being yelled at on the phone by distributors, and it's definitely a job, not a career, and it doesn't feel like an opportunity as much as a paycheque. It's admin, though, so it certainly wouldn't ruin my resume.
So, FUCK. What do I doooo? Both jobs will be high-stress, the real estate one because it's kind of fucking insane (though likely fun) to assist three high-producing agents at the same time and the hydraulics one because it will be doing all entirely new things. My instincts are telling me to go with the real estate job because of the learning and growth potential, but it will mean having zero spending money and still going into debt by possibly a few hundred bucks a month. Both jobs have nice people. Yay?
It's a good problem to have in the current market -- choosing between two jobs -- it's just a bit stressful to have my options boiled down to two, and both are a step down. Eh. The real estate lady wasn't willing to give me any time off (I asked for 16 hours a month -- two days) to do freelance work to make up the shortfall, because for the money she damned well wants me at least 40 hours a week, and why aren't I just freelancing on Saturdays? (Um, because I'm fucking EXHAUSTED?) So I will freelance on Saturdays.
If I am 1099 at the real estate job (and therefore can deduct expenses), I can swing it (though never having any time off? The SUCK). If the hydraulics job comes back with an offer that would be higher than what I'm making now, maybe I would have to suck it up and work there for a year.
Either way, I'm totally going to be employed!