Sunday, September 23, 2018

Mutant in a Seat: The Woes and Humiliation of Interviewing F

by HomeRearedChef (writer), San Jose, November 06, 2012

Woe unto me, as I sat before my interviewers—four people!—doing my best to look confident and not just eye-candy and no brains.

But sitting there, I more likely emerged an eye-sore, wide-eyed, all smiles and teeth.

Sitting straight and proper—though feeling more like a mutant, like the “Creature from the Black Lagoon”—silently conjuring grace and dignity, and sensing the seconds tick, I managed to hold my composure steady. At least long-enough to answer every question, timely and smartly (or so I hoped), even if inside I felt like a wind-up toy talking—a chatty-Cathy doll!

I felt miserably on display and completely helpless; but practiced hard at looking composed, I sat for one solid hour answering every one of their questions. I answered honestly and to the best of my recollection and ability, but the whole time knowing they now see me as a “has-been.”

You see, when they asked, “So what is it you like most about your present position?” I felt I needed to update them on my status, because I know I heard gasps escape their mouths when they realized that I haven’t worked in over three years.

I assumed they knew! Shouldn’t they have already known my status?

“I’m sorry! I am not working at the present, and it says so right there on my resume,” I replied, though without any disrespect.

I wondered if they’d even bothered to review my resume before calling me in. So I proceeded to explain the present.

“I am in-between office jobs. But I have been keeping busy at home: writing recipes and home-fitness articles for”

Their eyes, in unison, quickly dropped to their paperwork on a clipboard, obviously scanning my resume for what was on print about me. Did they really not know? I actually felt embarrassed for them. Indeed they were not prepared to receive me. I was just part of their “cattle-call.”

We continued and moved on with questions about my work history, work habits, and computer knowledge. They told me, point blank, that these questions did not have a right or wrong answers.

Says who? The right answers will get me the job, the wrong answers won’t!

They took turns asking questions, questions that were obviously prompted from sheets on their clipboards, and every time I answered they scribbled on their clipboard. And nervously I sat hoping I answered everything correctly. With some of my answers they actually seemed impressed. That is until I derailed them with an answer I was compelled to give with raw honesty.

“Why do you think that you are the best candidate for this job?” they asked.

“Well,” I began, “I cannot say that I am the best candidate, I would not think to presume, but I believe I am a very strong candidate for this position. I would not wish to mislead anyone with my abilities. But I am certain that I can deliver what you need.”

They nodded heads but no one responded. My answer was sincere and to the point, but that may have cost me this position.

What happened to the good ol’ days, when a person was chosen on character and gut feeling that this was an ideal match? Back-in-the-day people stayed at a job till they retired. People now move around, going from job to job to job, and no-one stays long.

We dream a life to be; we live to dream that life! (vka)

About the Writer

HomeRearedChef is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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10 comments on Mutant in a Seat: The Woes and Humiliation of Interviewing F

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By souschef on November 06, 2012 at 11:55 am

I despise being interviewed by commitee.

It feels more like an interogation and you cannot actually make a connection with any of the intervewers.

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By HomeRearedChef on November 06, 2012 at 12:06 pm

Hello Souschef! Thank you for sharing your own experience. I know I've talked to others who have felt the same way, being put through this same process of interviewing. Though I understand it is standard procedure to interview in this way, it is horribly intimidating and very painful. Sigh!

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By Barbara MacDonald on November 06, 2012 at 08:07 pm

I could not agree more. Years ago, I went for an interview with CAS, which is the Canadian version of Children's Protections Services...was a shock to walk in and find a panel of 6 people all asking me questions. They actually offered me the job, I declined as I knew I would not be a good fit there with all the paper work and many of their policies which I would not agree with. But yes, it is not a nice way to be interviewed, I agree.

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By HomeRearedChef on November 06, 2012 at 09:30 pm

Six people? Yikes! But they offered you the job, and I never heard back from my group. I am, however, a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. :)

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By Barbara MacDonald on November 06, 2012 at 09:35 pm

I too believe that...and I pretty much knew from the interview that I would not of been happy in that I declined and ended up in a place doing exactly what I needed to be doing. Have a nice evening. :-)

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By HomeRearedChef on November 06, 2012 at 09:47 pm

I remember wanting that position because the money being offered was really good. But I also remember thinking that I did not like the job that was being offered. So there. :)

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By riginal on November 18, 2012 at 10:14 pm

Hi,riginal here. Didn't you know that pompous arrogant people in business and life wear discouragement blinkers and travel in upper echelon stys? They are too busy wallowing around in their own self- importance and feeding off the scraps of your discomfort to snort any sort of meaningful acknowledgement of what this attractive person before them has to offer. Hell! what if this lady sitting before us is intelligent as well! The most important person in the world smiles at you in the mirror every morning.It's how you temper that importance with a touch of humility and how you reflect it to others that makes you what you are.From what i've read you're well ahead.

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By melanie jean juneau on November 18, 2012 at 10:57 pm

REALLY well written- excellent stuff Virginia. Thankgoodness I never experienced anthing like that.

I have always been able to disarm the powerful and speak to professionals, business people and politicians as equals even though on paper i am a stay at home mum, without a career, unable to drive, with too many kids and not enough money. It looks so bad it is actually hilarously funny. Living on the margins of society gives me an awesome perspective of their world

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By HomeRearedChef on November 18, 2012 at 11:31 pm

Hello Riginal ~ Your comment is very uplifting, thank you so very, very much. I think that when I am in need of a little boost, I am coming right back here to read you comment to me. :)

By the way, it is really lovely to meet you!

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By HomeRearedChef on November 18, 2012 at 11:34 pm

I have no problem believing, Melanie, that you are quite able to disarm anyone. I have gotten to know you through your writing, and you are a little Powerhouse! :)

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