Tag Archives: interviews

How To Not Get Hired

The process of interviewing for a job is a lot like being on the show, “The Voice.”

  1. Thanks to YouTube, your talents are recognized and they invite you to audition
  2. With their backs facing you, you perform so they can hear you “sing”
  3. If they liked what they heard, their chairs turn around so they can look at you
  4. Then they put you on the show
  5.  You lose or…
  6.  You win and no one hears from you again

On the off chance that Christina Aguilera and Cee-Lo aren’t vying for your vocal chords, the job process goes as follows:

  1. Your parents tell you to apply for a job
  2. You go onto LinkedIn
  3. You apply for a job
  4. If you aren’t a complete fuck-up, you get an email asking when they can call you for a phone interview
  5. If the phone interview goes well, they invite you to come into the office and meet with the people you would potentially be working with
  6. Then they drag it out for two weeks and tell you that they decided to hire someone internally
  7. Rinse (cry) and repeat

Step 6 happened yesterday.

I wish I didn’t have to hold back and be professional when talking with recruiters/interviewers. I want to be real with them and be able to say, “Listen sister (or brother), Let’s not beat around the bush here. No one likes bullshit. I’m not going to apply for a job that I am underqualified for and you wouldn’t have brought me in here if you didn’t think I was qualified. I know you know I’m not stupid. I will do this job better than anyone else. I’m a buried fucking treasure. You can take my word for it. Thank you.” Maybe I’ll change my cover letter to just that followed by my second favorite quote when it comes to writing*,

“Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all his sentences short, or that he avoid all detail and treat his subjects only in outline, but that every word tell.”

-William Strunk Jr., Elements of Style

I think my next blog post will just be a screenshot of my resume.

* My first favorite quote regarding writing is by one of my favorite authors, KV, “Here is a lesson in creative writing. First rule: Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing. All they do is show you’ve been to college.”

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , ,

Potty-Training

WARNING: For those of you happy with what you accomplished in college and are thusly content with your life now, don’t read this and I hate you*.

* Just kidding**

** No, I’m not

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I had an interview about two months ago with the Head of Strategy at a big-ass advertising agency. Granted, it was an informational interview, but an interview nonetheless. He asked the first go-to interview question, “So tell me about yourself,” so I did. Then we got into a discourse about what his role was at the company, what he looks for in an employee, blah blah, and then he asked, “so tell me about your group of friends.” I held myself back from a witty quip like “oh, am I boring you” or something like that, but I kept it professional. So I said, “Well, my best friend is about to travel to South Sudan to help facilitate mediations with the Sudanese. She moved here from Bosnia when she was 13 – genocide refugee – learned her English from Boy Meets World – pretty average person overall. My other friend is a former circus performer (contortionist), and is now a phenom hula-hooper. My other best friend is doing cancer research at Harvard – also average.” I think this was the first time I’ve had to describe my friends like that. This “exercise” triggered a profound thought, “I’m so fucking average.”

I was an average college student. Sure, I played collegiate-level volleyball all four years, but I never did anything truly resume-worthy. I guess I didn’t really know what college, especially my college, was for. I didn’t know that college was a place to apply for grants and attempt to save the world from evil dictators or soft drinks. If I did know that college was for all of that, no, I probably still would not have applied for grants, because I’m not really a “save the world” kind of person. Maybe I would have tried to go on an excavation in Madagascar or Egypt to find fossils or tombs, but I digress. For the past several months, it seemed as though I just went through college without doing something extraordinary. I guess college seemed like a big waste. Looking back at myself looking back on college, it was not a waste. I surrounded myself with brilliant, funny, worldly, creative thinkers who continue to make me better. I also got to live in the great state of Minnesota for four years which made me appreciate temperatures above zero degrees. For real though, if you’re like me, or like the me of the last several months, thinking college was pretty much a wash, you’re wrong…or you’re not. I don’t know you so I can’t really make that call.

I didn’t do something in college like travel to Dakar or discover a new species of dinosaur, I’m thinking that my twenties can be the time to do that. I have friends that are the farthest people from average, and that is something I will continue to embrace. Sure, I need to focus on the baby steps first like getting a real person job and being financially stable – all right, maybe those are a little bigger than baby steps. Let’s call it potty-training. I need to focus on getting potty-trained and wiping my butt, before I can pull up my pants and do something I’m truly proud of. I can talk about how great my group of friends are until I’m blue in the face, but I want to brag about myself in an interview without lying.

Although I’m a toddler as far as being a twenty-something goes, I’m learning that just because college is over, the opportunity for adventure is not. I’m freaking twenty-two years old! Life is only just beginning now.

Tagged , , , ,