On Phone Interviews

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I had the opportunity to take part in a phone interview this week for a position I had recently applied for. The recruiter opened by asking some general questions about myself. This being a faith-based company, I was also asked about my involvement with church, etc. The interview was cruising along until I was told that I lacked the necessary experience. The recruiter said that he would like me to come in and interview for a lesser position within the company. One that happened to pay what I made per hour in high school.

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I realized immediately that I was being undervalued. I disagreed with the recruiter’s assessment. My resume and experience reflect that I am well suited for the position. I figure when you start to disagree with an interviewer, something is wrong. The interview is much like a first date, everyone is putting their best foot forward. This interview was a misstep at a dance.

Defenses up, I listened to the marketing spiel about the company. A spiel I had read, word-for-word, on the company’s website. The interview left me with a disingenuous taste, as if manipulation had occurred.

  • The Negative: “Your skills are lacking.”
  • The Positive: “…but we have another opening that pays next to nothing!”
  • The Positive, Positive: “…and we are promoting on a weekly basis.”

In the end, I declined a further interview. Chalk this one up as a learning experience and keep on applying. The white whale exists.

Job Hunting: Professional Silence

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How do you keep job rejection from becoming personal?

You apply month after month. No response.

You have a professional look over your resume. Good to go. Still no response.

That cover letter you just wrote, the best thing you’ve ever written. No response.

Time and consistent rejection without official reply are wearing. You begin to wonder if it is something personal. Could it be that some future employer knows about that tuna fish sandwich accident in high school? Nah.

There are a lot of factors that go into the job hunt. Factors that have nothing to do with you, your work history, or that dumped tuna sandwich. Some jobs have to be publicly posted for legal purposes. Someone else, internally, already offered the job. I’m guessing this happens more often than not. It’s not you, sparky.

Factors of experience, location, and even race are further elements to consider. However awesome you are, you may not fit the company culture, hiring needs, and/or profile.

Hunting for a job is hard. The faceless modern job application process the internet promotes makes the process more difficult. There is no human feedback. The submit button looms with the ever present question of whether to attach a cover letter or not.

But you can do this. We can do this.

By reminding ourselves that we:

  • Are qualified for the positions we are applying for.
  • Are not just some number, standing in an infinite line. We are unique, talented, and experienced.
  • Will not always be dealing with silence.

Job hunting is a waiting game. May you wait well.