Saturday, 21 April 2012

(Day 33) The interview II (The Circle of Judgement)

Tuesday 3rd April (Day 33) 

After the fun and games all the fundraisers left the office to hit the streets and the interviewees were left behind.  We were all sat around the room in a big circle and a tall bearded guy called Ben introduced himself.  I had met him before, last week when I was first approached by the fundraisers from this company.

After he introduced himself he went round the circle one person at a time asking people to introduce themselves and tell the circle a little bit about themselves.  When each person had finished introducing themselves he asked them for a nickname.

Most people just said a shorter version of their first name like Vicki etc.  Ben would always reply with “that is a boring nickname, from now on you will be known as Sugar lips”.  He came up with completely random names like Snow drop or Petals or something.  It was interesting to see what random name he would pluck out of his slightly crazy head next.

When he came to me I told him that recently people had started calling me Harry Potter because apparently I look and sound like him.  As Ben was English as well he agreed with me that I didn’t look nor sound anything like that specky little prick, but he still gave me the nickname “Potter”.  I wish I had just said “Mike” because then he would have had to come up with one of his interesting random nicknames for me.

After the round of nicknames he then went round the circle again asking everyone random questions like “if you could live in any age, what age would you live in and why?” or “if you could have dinner with anyone who would it be and why?”  They were somewhat random questions and I suppose he was judging people by the way they were able to think on their feet rather than what actual answers they gave.

The question he asked me was if I could be any superhero who would I be and why?  I said batman because I am not a big superhero fan and the only superheroes movies I have watched recently was Batman and Spiderman and I much preferred the Batman films.  Plus I don’t like Spiderman much, like Harry Potter I seemed to have some kind of unknown deep seated hatred of geeky main characters.  I also prefer the idea of an average guy using an array of equipment to be a superhero rather than the ridiculous idea of some loser being bitten by a genetically modified spider, how stupid.

After the circle of random questions he then went round the circle again asking everyone to sell something to the person next to them.  I didn’t get the chance to sell something because we did this in pairs and the person next to me was the seller.  I had to play the role of the customer and the item being sold to me was the whiteboard in the room.  Every item was something in the room that Ben picked randomly. 

The whiteboard in the room was a self standing whiteboard (rather than a wall mounted one) and it was in a terrible state of disrepair.  It was interesting watching the guy sat next to me try and sell a whiteboard that was moments away from collapsing.  You couldn’t write on the board on your own, you really needed at least one other person to hold it still whilst you wrote on it to prevent the whole thing falling apart.

I played along with the role play and asked a few questions but I generally kept it simple.  I resisted the temptation of being cruel and giving the other guy a hard time by asking difficult questions or pointing out the state of the whiteboard, although it was tempting.
At the end of the selling role-plays Ben told us the interviews had now finished.  He said that he would be phoning the lucky people who had made it through that evening, but he then added that if you weren’t picked he would not phone you. 

I thought it was a bit harsh that he wasn’t going to bother to phone me that evening. 
That was a joke, I was feeling confident about my chances but it is still a bit cruel in not bothering phoning people who came to the interview but hadn’t been successful.

I left the interview thinking about the people I had met and which ones I thought where going to be successful and which ones weren’t.  I remembered one guy who was over an hour late, one guy who answered his phone during the interview and a girl who looked miserable as hell.  These people surely weren’t expecting a phone call that evening?  There was a very attractive looking girl but her English wasn’t very good and a tall guy who was a bit quiet.  I thought these people were boarder line.  The rest seemed fine and I was expecting to see them in the training day (providing I was one of them).

I walked the long journey home thinking about this and about the job.  I got home and waited for the phone to ring.

(Some time later...)

The time is now approaching 4:30; surely he would have phoned by now?  I thought I had a good chance.  I started doubting myself now.  I wasn’t feeling very well that day and I probably looked terrible?  I didn’t shower that morning either and the long brisk walk probably made me a bit sweaty and smelly.  Maybe I just wasn’t good enough for the job?
I had tried not getting my hopes up during the day in the event that they don’t call me but I was still bitterly disappointed, this was my opportunity to really see if I can do this, and it is going rapidly.

It is funny really isn’t it?  Last time I applied for a fundraising job I was in 2 minds about whether I wanted it or not with a large part of me hoping that they would phone me to say I hadn’t got the job.  But this time I wasn’t in 2 minds, I really wanted this job, this opportunity.  And I haven’t got it.  Isn’t that ironic?

Just when this thought was passing through my head the phone rang, “Hi Mike, it is Ben here, I would like to offer you the job”.

Yes Ben, I would like to take you up on that offer.  I felt relieved and very happy.  “I should never have doubted myself” I thought.  Saying this in my mind made me feel smug in a very satisfying way.  I am usually a very modest person but this evening I am wearing my smug face.  I feel like nothing can stop me now!

My smug face

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