Friday, June 22, 2012

Job Interviews Really Can...Stink...Yeah, That's the Word I Was Going to Use

**Updated 6/25/12.  Check out #9**

Currently my home buying, no longer "mis," adventures are on hold.  I wanted to think of something else to write about that many of you all can relate to.  I don't want to dwell on the negative things (or creepy things) that we go through but after the last couple of weeks I have had, I thought the best thing to write about would be my job hunt.  Better yet, the wonderful interviews and sometimes offers.

I know that these aren't horror stories by any means.  I have heard some terrible interview stories and there is no way that I can compare to that, but I have been through my own frustrating situations.  I will not tell you the name of the places I interviewed...some of them may be schools, some may be local businesses, and some may be larger, established businesses.  IF you are reading this though and are from an HR department or school board and ask specifically about a place I will get with you privately...who knows...maybe some things can change!

Again, these are not horror stories...just stories.  So, in a pseudo chronological order:

"My Most Memorable Job Interviews (and a few offers)"

1.  Sorry, it is just allergies. When I was eight months pregnant with my little boy I went in to an interview that went fairly well. It was an hour drive from home but I was looking for my first [real] job. I interviewed with the first individual and thought things went really well. I was told to be on the look out for another phone call from another individual that I could potentially work under. I said goodbye and started back on my drive. Thirty minutes later I get a phone call from the second person. He was upset with me because we were supposed to meet 30 minutes ago. So, I of course turn the car around and drive back up to meet him.

The interview was painful. At one point he said, "I don't have your transcripts. So, tell me, what would they say?" I answered, "it would say that I graduated with a 3.96 GPA. I have two degrees and maintained a course load of 20+ credit hours a semester." He then said, "NO, what would it say about you?" I have no idea! It lists my college classes for crying out loud! "Well, it would say that I have a well rounded education with classes such as: _____, _____, _____, and _____." I rattled off as many classes as I could remember. That again was not the answer he was looking for. That's when the tears started to come. I kept wiping them away and at one point told him I was suffering from allergies. Yeah...that's right...allergies. As I was ready to leave the man looked at my large belly and asked me, "is there anything that you see will come up in the future that would cause you to miss work?" Oh, because you can't specifically ask me if I'm pregnant you are going to reword it to make me say it? "Nope!" I replied and left as quickly as I could. I was actually offered the job...I did not take it.  

2. You're hired. Oh, never mind we gave it to someone else. A few days before moving to my new community I interviewed for a job. It was a slight drive for me but extremely doable. I drove the five hours to get there (at that point we were still living in a different state), talked with the hiring committee, and drove back five hours. I felt like the interview went well. A few hesitations when it came to some of the resources that I would have but I was still excited about it. On my drive back home I was offered the job. I told him I needed to talk to my husband but that I would call him bac within 24 hours. That next morning I left a message on the school phone and told them I had a few more questions but that I would go ahead and give them my verbal yes. I said I would be officially moved down there by the end of the week and would be happy to sign all of the papers. I thought that was it. The day before the move I received an email...an EMAIL!! That said they received my message but then never heard back. They didn't have time to wait so they offered the job to the next candidate. WHAT?! You couldn't have called me once just to double check...you just offer it up to the next person without even checking?  

3. Can you count money back? You're hired.

**This space intentionally left blank because that was basically the entire interview.
I accepted the seasonal part-time job.***

4. Sorry that position is...vacant...filled...vacant...filled. Yet another position became available near my community. I was excited. The position had just been posted and I submitted my materials the next day. I received a phone call from the [boss] and he said they had just filled that position. He thought the person was leaving but they were actually staying. He was sorry for the confusion but told me he would pass my name and information along if anything came up. One month later I notice the position is posted again. Okay, yay! Maybe it didn't work out. I called immediately. Nope, that position was filled by a different person. Alright, I can deal with that. It happens. However, months later I find out that the position was filled by someone without the proper qualifications. How could they even hire this person without the right qualifications? They can't! Well, they can't unless there are NO other qualified candidates. I noticed that job was available again this year. We'll see how it goes...

5.  What value is there in a stay at home mom?  Last year I was called in to interview for a position that I was excited about.  It was something I was qualified for but it would have been a new adventure.  Yes, it was about an hour away, but at the time I didn't mind...I actually received a call for an interview!  The day before the interview I received a phone call from what would have been my possible co-worker and he told me a few things I needed to have prepared for the interview.  I thought, "wow, that was sweet."  The next morning I drive to the city (which actually took 90 minutes due to a massive electrial outage in the town) but I still made it on time! 

I met the hiring committee, joked about the electricity, and felt comfortable and confident about how the interview would go.  I was prepared with my answers and had done my research about the place.  Then they start the questions.  Question #1 (from the potential co-worker that had called me earlier).  "So, I see from your resume that you haven't actually [been working] for the last year.  What have you actually done with yourself then?"  BAM.  Slap.To.The.Face.  Ummm...raising a child!  I may have actually said it that way too but I can't quite remember. 

I was so shocked by not only how he asked the question, the tone, the manor, but the fact that he asked it that way at all!  Don't they usually ask, "tell us a little bit about yourself," first?  Needless to say the waterworks sprung.  I can't help it.  I am a crier.  Luckily it was just tears that I successfully?/unsuccessfully? pawned off as allergies...again. 

6.  You do NOT want to work in this job.  Recently I had an interview for a position that I felt/knew I was overqualified for.  I knew it but was still willing and ready to take any position possible.  Plus, why should it matter if I am overqualified?  If I want to take a job that doesn't "stretch me" isn't that my choice?  I'm not sure if I would have ever been offered an interview for this job if it wasn't for my persistance in calling to see if the position had been filled and by knowing someone that worked at this place.  This interview lasted about 20 minutes.  The first five involved me giving my life/work history and saying why I would be interested in this position...the other 15 minutes involved the other person telling me about the job.  Not just telling me about it but ripping the job apart.  I was given a dozen reasons as to why I would not want to work here; the work conditions, the long hours, the noise, the never ending pile of paperwork, and the inability to talk to your co-workers.  Oh, and by the way, we use an antiquated system; you'll be printing off [things] from the internet and then typing them in to the computer.  Really this job is kind of pointless to even have in our [company.]  Hmmm...maybe they should have someone else conduct the interviews next time.

7.  Hold on, let me check my text messages.  Last week I interviewed for a position, an hour away again, that I hemmed and hawed about.  I was excited about getting an interview but that hour drive is just a bit too much.  I went anyway because interviews are good experience...blah...blah...blah.  After waiting 20 minutes past my time I was called in.  I knew the before me was doing well because they talked for 70 minutes and because you could here them laughing and talking about nonwork related things.  Hmmm...tough act to follow.  I sat down and starting answering questions.  I thought it was going okay until the [boss] jumped out of her chair and said, "oh, I need to check my text messages.  My teenage daughter is going to WalMart and isn't quite sure how to use the debit card."  Well, that is a bit rude but it is nice to see that she is looking out for her child...oh wait, her daughter is 19 not 13?  Uh, no.  Needless to say that kind of jolted the interview.  I then found the [boss] answering my questions.  She would ask, I would begin to answer, and then she would finish my sentences.  Plus, I was in and out in about 20 minutes.

8.  I'll let you know soon...still waiting.  I interviewed for a job earlier this month that I was extremely excited about.  I thought it would be a perfect fit.  I heard the job was opening...and then I waited for it to post.  I sent in my application materials...and then I waited for an interview.  I had the interview...and waited...and waited...and waited to hear about the job.  Three weeks later and I'm still "waiting" to hear back from this [guy.]  Now, I already know that I didn't get the job.  I actually found out through the grapevine via another [guy] when he asked me to interview for his current position that opened up.  Surprise, surprise...he lost his employee to a transfer.  The job I had still been waiting to hear about!!!  Another slap in the face.  Dear Guy #1, could you please be considerate and at least call, email, or send a letter that told me someone else was chosen.  Yeah, that would have been nice.  So now I know that I didn't get the job but part of me is still hoping that I will get some sort of message from him that the position has been filled.  Do you think it will actually happen?

9.  I promise, I won't make you wait.  So this is the continuation of the last interview.  This was not my ideal job but in my community the opportunities to work in my specific field are few and far between.  Guy #2 conducted the interview and we talked for almost two hours.  I felt the interview went well although I did tell him my hesitations.  I prayed and prayed about this job.  Specifically if it was offered to me would I take it, would I try and change things, would I turn it down?  I was told I would know, whether it was a "yes" or a "no,"  by _____ date.  I told him how I appreciated that and then told him the story about the previous job in the community.  He said, "that is terrible.  I promise, I won't make you wait."  Well folks, I'm still waiting.  I really  hope that they offered the job to someone else and are just trying to figure out the details but still do I really want to work for a place that treats potential employees like that?

**So here is the update.  After waiting a week later then promised I did finally get an answer...it was a no.  Am I a bit disappointed?  Yes, but I also said earlier that I hoped they would offer it to someone that really enjoys working with [this particular age group].  When I was asked by the interviewer if I was intimidated by [this group], I was honest and said yes. 


It still hurts to not get a yes, but I'm hoping that the right job is out there.  These past two experiences have also opened my eyes to the area that I live in.  It makes me appreciate the places I have worked at in the past and it makes me yearn more for my community.  I WANT to see changes being made!  Would I love to be a part of it?  Yes!**    


Care to share?  Post a comment and I will contact you.  I would love to hear about other's interesting interviews. 




1 comment:

  1. I love these stories, I just wish they didn't have to be about a real person, much less my bride!
    The only one I can share is one where I was told several times overthe phone how impressed they were with my qualifications, and I waited several months for an interview, then finally called when I was offered another job and they still didn't have their act together. Can you guess the field, folks? Yep, Education! Why does the educational hiring process have to be so much more complicated than EVERY other job in the world?

    ReplyDelete