Yesterday I had six interviews with one company. As if that isn’t bad enough, the turnover there is so bad that the guy who did the phone interview and would be my boss there moved on between the time he told HR to set up the interviews and my showing up at their offices. It was less than a week. Whew! I did my best. Some of those interview questions are just too much. Two of them asked (in separate interviews), “What’s your favorite product?” That’s a hard one. Finally I said, “Toilet paper.”
“Why?” I was asked.
“Because you wouldn’t want to be in this room with me if I didn’t use it.” That’s what I said in my head. In real life I pointed to my smart phone and said, “The woman on here. You, know, ask her a question and she answers it.” Seriously, that was my lame answer. I had to make it sound more intelligent by talking about natural language computing and machine learning. The truth is the reason I like it so much is that if I ask her to tell me a joke, she does. They’re always different and make me laugh.
I know I am guaranteed to be asked what I do best and what is my greatest weakness. I am always tempted to say something silly. but people take that stuff seriously. Why in the world would I give someone the reason not to hire me? I’ve been tempted to say that my greatest weakness is that I put my job over everything, but who’d believe that? I’m just honest and tell them that my greatest weakness is to lie to my boss in order to keep collecting a pay check. One day I will actually say that.
Truthfully, the interviews were very stressful. Some were enjoyable conversations and I felt good sharing with someone who could become my colleague. Others were conducted with the interviewer being rather distant and asking questions out of The Big Book of Interviewing. I recognize that conducting job interviews is really unpleasant on both sides. The guy talking to me has a full day of real work to do and has no objective concept of how to evaluate a prospect. I always felt that way. What could I learn in an hour that would assure that I got the right person?
What it all comes down to in the end is whether the person interviewing me thinks that I would fit into the company’s culture and that I feel comfortable that I won’t hate going to work there. The kind of work I do doesn’t lend itself to testing my knowledge. I am probed about my experience, but there are no objective measures of what information I have that will qualify me. The problem is that some people think they can ask just the right questions to determine if someone can do the job. I don’t think anyone found that question with me yesterday.
As you probably know, getting this job is extremely important to Mrs. Lion and I. Our continued survival will be seriously threatened if I don’t. I didn’t leave their offices with the warm, fuzzy feeling that I have this in the bag. There are no other candidates and this job has been open for months. That suggests to me I am just another in a long line of candidates who won’t have the exact, right set of qualifications. It didn’t help that my prospective new boss has been in his position for only a few days, and with the company less than a year. The tea leaves don’t seem too encouraging. Maybe I’m wrong. I sure hope so.
Mrs. Lion and I have decided to spend the extra money on fuel and go camping. We may not have the camper much longer. We might as well enjoy ourselves while we can. I’m generally a pretty optimistic sort of guy. But at this point I am at the very least, a realist. My self confidence is suffering from this long and so-far-fruitless job hunt. Getting away may help recharge my batteries. I know my options aren’t all gone. In the middle of a phone interview (one of the six) this afternoon, call waiting interrupted. It was a manager at another company that contacted me a month or so ago. I had to put him off. I’m hoping that tomorrow he will call back and invite me for further discussions.
I’m sure you are bored with all these unsexy, non-chastity posts. The only people who will see them are our loyal readers. Search engines won’t point to these posts with any search term even distantly related to enforced chastity or FLM. I promise to return to our regular programming tomorrow. The fact is that I consider you a friend. My lioness and I have been sharing uncensored views of our lives with you for a long time. You know more about us than our families. Thanks for sticking with us all this time.