The Re-Interview

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  • Benanov 2007-12-20 12:31
    This just reinforces my opinion that while it's not often a good idea to burn your bridges, you should never, ever cross them again.

    :)

    I also apply this (with a little less generality) to significant others. If it ever got so bad that you couldn't work it out, it's not really going to ever work again, mainly because the strength of the relationship wasn't enough to hold your baggage last time.

    (Mainly this keeps you from thinking that your ex was the best you'll ever have.)
  • Simon J 2007-12-20 12:31
    Takes me back, things your told in an interview about what you will be doing and where the company is going, and it all turns out that you end up working with 12 access databases and some VBA in excel sheets...
  • akatherder 2007-12-20 12:31
    I don't understand the point of going back for an interview when you already know you don't want the job and it's a terrible company to work for.
  • K 2007-12-20 12:31
    When your company bullshits itself into a corner like this, is it ethically reprehensible to let them keep doing that? If so, is it any more reprehensible to laugh at them?
  • WhiskeyJack 2007-12-20 12:31
    This is the very first time I have read a story on TDWTF and thought, "No way, this can't possibly be true."
  • steve 2007-12-20 12:33
    You always hear about people stretching the truth or lying outright on their resumes...this is an example of why it's nice to personally know someone who works for the company that you interview with - otherwise, who holds them accountable?
  • D. T. North 2007-12-20 12:50
    Words of advice about interviewing. First, the interview process is as much about you learning about them as it is them learning about you. Since you don't know these people, it's very easy to trust their salesman-like pitch. Keep track of all the buzz-words and catch-phrases that you hear. If they average more than 1 per minute, run away.

    I've also interviewed a ton of people and can speak from my own experiences what we look for. I'm in the Civil Engineering world, so I imagine that things are slightly different in IT. But we are less interested in the skill set and more interested in how the person would fit into the company. We can train them on skills. But if we don't think the personality is worthwhile, we don't make an offer regardless of how much experience they have. Personally, I'm never comfortable with a person that doesn't ask questions about us. And when I'm on the fence between two applicants -- the one that follows up with a phone call or a note (even an e-mail) thanking me for my time gets the job. Only about 30% of the people ever do that...but we remember 100% of the people that follow-up.
  • Gilhad 2007-12-20 12:54
    akatherder:
    I don't understand the point of going back for an interview when you already know you don't want the job and it's a terrible company to work for.


    Well, sometimes it happens, that the company can undergo change ... and sometimes someone maybe want to see it on his own eyes
  • Sam 2007-12-20 13:01
    Hey, if I had nothing better to do, I would have re-interviewed, just to see what sort of mess the company had gotten itself into.

    What the heck? Why is my CAPTCHA "incassum"?
  • Mogri 2007-12-20 13:01
    How in the world does a company like this stay in business? My only guess is that their IT department makes up a very small portion of their total business. They're certainly not spending much of their MULTI-MILLIONS on it.
  • Mogri 2007-12-20 13:02
    Sam:
    What the heck? Why is my CAPTCHA "incassum"?


    New captchas! I got "quibis" last time and "uxor" this time. What, no waffles?
  • my name is missing 2007-12-20 13:21
    its sad that people have to work at such stupid places, and even sadder that they stay in business because their customers are even stupider

    life is too short to work for stupid companies

  • kirk 2007-12-20 13:27
    I'm Kirk, so I'm getting a kick out of these replies...

    nice editing there Alex. You took a sad sack of a story and turned it into a good WTF.

    And to answer the question "why re-interview with a company you know you don't want to join", I was trying to find out whether I had burnt that bridge ("livid", remember?), or just singed it slightly.
  • FredSaw 2007-12-20 13:30
    akatherder:
    I don't understand the point of going back for an interview when you already know you don't want the job and it's a terrible company to work for.
    It sounded to me like he went back mostly out of curiosity. I can see myself doing that, too. Kind of like going back to your alma mater 20 years later to see what's different.
  • Patrick 2007-12-20 13:31
    Air quotes are a dead giveaway that you don't want to work there.
  • Ursus Americanus 2007-12-20 14:02
    D. T. North:
    Words of advice about interviewing. First, the interview process is as much about you learning about them as it is them learning about you.
    This is absolutely true. I find that you are much more likely to receive a job offer if you ask your interviewer questions about the company. In general, the more questions, the better. It shows interest - which interviewers like - and you will learn, for yourself, if you really do want to work at that company.

    Since I'm here talking about interviews, I might as well toss out a few other tips. I don't have a lot of interview experience - I have only interviewed with five companies - but every single interview I have had resulted in a job offer. YMMV of course.

    Wear a suit, even if you are told that "business casual" is fine. "Business Casual" is a very nebulous term and it means different things everywhere. Best to be safe. Besides; you never know who else you will see in the company, and looking nice never hurts.

    Guys: Get a standard "businessman" haircut. Take out your earrings. Cover up that Playboy tattoo you think was so cool when you were 18. Trim your beard, if you have one. If not, then shave. Don't wear a hat.

    If you are like me and completely fashion deficient, go to The Men's Warehouse or a similar shop. Find someone who works there and say, "I have an interview. Make me look nice." Only your wallet will regret it.

    Yeah, superficial stuff all, but remember: People are superficial, especially the HR types. (IT people are much less so in my experience, but still: Look presentable.)

    I always carry with me one of those nice looking leather folders. Inside: A notepad, one or two pens, at least 5 copies of my resume, and a list of questions that I have for the company.

    Take notes during the interview!

    A few questions that I have asked:
    a) Why is this position open?
    b) If I were hired, to whom would I report? Can I meet him/her?
    c) Can you give me an example of a typical day in this position?

    a) is vital. A good answer to this is, "We are growing right now and we need the people." b) is important; Having to report to someone you loathe makes work hell. c) gives you insight into not only the position, but how the company as a whole works.

    These days, if you are going for an IT job you will interview with a developer or a programming manager of some kind. They will ask you technical questions. If you don't know the answer, then say so. DO NOT, EVER try to fake an answer. It is far better to say "I don't know" than to make something up.

    If you don't know the answer to a problem (or even if you do!), then it doesn't hurt to ask your interviewer how THEY would solve that particular problem. It shows humility, it shows you are willing to learn, and perhaps most important it strokes the ego of the person interviewing you. It will also give you an idea of how well their system is put together. If your interviewer give you some whacko solution to a lot of problems, then you may want to run.

    Oh, and one last thing. Use a new email address, one that isn't used for anything else. Companies like to search email addresses these days, and if they link it back to postings on a site, or your blog, or whatever, then they may see something that they don't like.

    Hope that helps someone out there! Best of luck.
  • anon 2007-12-20 14:17
    Ursus Americanus:
    I always carry with me one of those nice looking leather folders. Inside: A notepad, one or two pens, at least 5 copies of my resume, and a list of questions that I have for the company.


    Yes, please do bring new copies of your resume as your interviewers may have ones 2 years out of date with all formatting stripped.

    Ursus Americanus:
    If you don't know the answer, then say so. DO NOT, EVER try to fake an answer. It is far better to say "I don't know" than to make something up.


    Depends, if the question is a complex/thinking/problem solving one then you should imho try to solve it. If you don’t know or need hints then say so but at the same time make your thought process known as well. Knowing that you can solve problems but just got unlucky this time is more important than someone regurgitating the answer from memory.
  • KattMan 2007-12-20 14:25
    kirk:
    I'm Kirk, so I'm getting a kick out of these replies...

    nice editing there Alex. You took a sad sack of a story and turned it into a good WTF.

    And to answer the question "why re-interview with a company you know you don't want to join", I was trying to find out whether I had burnt that bridge ("livid", remember?), or just singed it slightly.


    Don't you wish you had burned and buried it? From the story it sounds like you had a robot in HR that didn't even remember you at all. Why else would she spout the standard script for an ex-employee?
  • ParkinT 2007-12-20 14:27
    I've got chills!!
  • Christophe 2007-12-20 14:40
    I kept waiting for the 'airline benefits' to be all-you-can-eat honey roasted peanuts.
  • kirk 2007-12-20 14:40
    Actually, Haylee wasn't in HR. One of Alex's edits - although I'm not sure I clarified that in the original - she was an IT project manager and is now a manager. And a robot. She remembered me - we worked together for those 4 years and she was the one responsible for telling me the wage freeze was still on. The "company" speech was like a practiced speech that she could not avoid telling. She is a robot.
  • GalacticCowboy 2007-12-20 14:49
    anon:
    Yes, please do bring new copies of your resume as your interviewers may have ones 2 years out of date with all formatting stripped.


    True story: Headhunter calls me up and arranges an interview for a position at some local company. Before submitting my resume to the company, however, they want a pre-interview at the staffing firm with a "senior" headhunter. The interview is going pretty well until the headhunter goes off on me for some answer - basically "Don't EVER tell a recruiter that you're not desperate for a job..." (Well, I wasn't - I heard about an opportunity and was evaluating it carefully, but I already had a pretty good job that wasn't in any danger...) The interview pretty much stopped there.

    As I'm getting my things together, the headhunter continues: "Oh, one other thing - there's something on your resume that I find highly inappropriate and would strongly advise you to remove before submitting it to anyone else. Are you aware of the item I'm talking about?" Frankly, I was baffled.

    I stammered something in response and he pushed his copy of my resume across the table to me. Of course it was in Courier text with >> in front of every line - when I forwarded my resume someone had copied the text into the body of an e-mail and forwarded it. Highlighted in yellow and with pen markings around it was a Jack Handey quote that had been in someone's e-mail signature in the chain of people who had received and forwarded it. It was something like "I want to take care of the environment for my kids, but not for my kids' kids, because I don't think kids should be having sex." (For the int'l audience, Jack Handey is a segment on Saturday Night Live where they play some pseudo-inspirational quote that has some bizarre or ironic twist in it - think "It's sad to think an entire family can be torn apart by something as simple as a pack of wild dogs.")

    The headhunter said "I really don't think your political views have any business on your resume." I wasn't sure whether to laugh or run, so I mutely handed him a "real" copy of my resume, nicely printed and formatted - and without any "political views" in sight. He looked at it blankly for a second and then said "Thank you for your time."

    They never called me back.
  • vt_mruhlin 2007-12-20 14:52
    Ursus Americanus:

    Wear a suit, even if you are told that "business casual" is fine. "Business Casual" is a very nebulous term and it means different things everywhere. Best to be safe. Besides; you never know who else you will see in the company, and looking nice never hurts.


    It's probably just me, but I start to feel really awkward if I'm the only one in the room wearing a suit. So much so that it degrades my performance in the interview, makes me look like a retard. Shirt and tie with no coat keeps me feeling a little more at ease, and still looking presentable.

    DO NOT, EVER try to fake an answer. It is far better to say "I don't know" than to make something up.

    If you don't know the answer to a problem (or even if you do!), then it doesn't hurt to ask your interviewer how THEY would solve that particular problem. It shows humility, it shows you are willing to learn, and perhaps most important it strokes the ego of the person interviewing you. It will also give you an idea of how well their system is put together. If your interviewer give you some whacko solution to a lot of problems, then you may want to run.


    What are your thoughts on saying "I don't know, but here's a crazy guess. In the real world I'd be googling the answer right now"?

    Some may say it's cheating to Google during a phone interview. I caught myself doing it instinctively once, asked the interviewer about it. He told me it normally annoys him, but he was impressed that I managed to do it without him even suspecting. Evidently I type quietly.

    Oh, and one last thing. Use a new email address, one that isn't used for anything else. Companies like to search email addresses these days, and if they link it back to postings on a site, or your blog, or whatever, then they may see something that they don't like.


    Good idea, but only if there's something bad associated with your other addresses. If they see you making forum posts to relevant websites (even this one, if I was the interviewer), they'll be impressed and they'll learn something about you. If they get no hits, they're going to assume you've got something to hide.

    Also, do a few vanity googles to see what's associated with your real name. My name is fairly uncommon, but there's one other, and he plays college rugby, so it ends up looking like I'm some big rugby fan. If your name happens to be Cho Seung-Hui or something, try to jokingly work it into the interview before they ask about it.
  • Anonymous 2007-12-20 15:02
    You know, this feels like a script to one of those surreal horrors/thrillers without monsters or ghosts, but the atmosphere created by the director is just so dense that you cannot forget it and wake up in the middle of the night, screaming. Or one of those really really weird movies you see in the TV once, and can never find them again anywhere, but they still sit in the back of your brain, giving you the shivers. Think something like Being John Malkovich mixed with Eraserhead and made underground. It just creeps you out.

    PS: Social-networking is the next most obnoxious and meaningless buzzwords right after Web 2.0.
  • eric76 2007-12-20 15:03
    Ursus Americanus:
    If you are like me and completely fashion deficient, go to The Men's Warehouse or a similar shop. Find someone who works there and say, "I have an interview. Make me look nice."
    I like country and western suits best.

    The way I figure it is that if I show up to an interview in a country and western suit and they don't like it, then they are probably too stuffy anyway.
  • anne 2007-12-20 15:20
    really? This really happened?

    I would certainly interview again, just to find out if it was for real. I'm not sure I believe it!
  • Pitabred 2007-12-20 15:33
    D. T. North:
    Words of advice about interviewing. First, the interview process is as much about you learning about them as it is them learning about you. Since you don't know these people, it's very easy to trust their salesman-like pitch. Keep track of all the buzz-words and catch-phrases that you hear. If they average more than 1 per minute, run away.

    I've also interviewed a ton of people and can speak from my own experiences what we look for. I'm in the Civil Engineering world, so I imagine that things are slightly different in IT. But we are less interested in the skill set and more interested in how the person would fit into the company. We can train them on skills. But if we don't think the personality is worthwhile, we don't make an offer regardless of how much experience they have. Personally, I'm never comfortable with a person that doesn't ask questions about us. And when I'm on the fence between two applicants -- the one that follows up with a phone call or a note (even an e-mail) thanking me for my time gets the job. Only about 30% of the people ever do that...but we remember 100% of the people that follow-up.


    In relation to that, I tend to try to do at least some basic research on any company I'm interviewing with, so I actually know what they do, what they specialize in, etc. Have some talking points and I won't be blindsided by as much. When interviewing people, I've found that I respect people more when they do things like that. It means they actually care about the interview.
  • KattMan 2007-12-20 15:34
    vt_mruhlin:

    It's probably just me, but I start to feel really awkward if I'm the only one in the room wearing a suit. So much so that it degrades my performance in the interview, makes me look like a retard. Shirt and tie with no coat keeps me feeling a little more at ease, and still looking presentable.


    Actually wear the suit. If the place is a bit more casual, just remove the jacket so you dress down to their level. Much easier to do that then to find a good jacket that matches if you need to add one.

    As for the addresses, I use two different email addresses and two different identities and keep them virtually separated so the two do not cross paths with each other. One is seen if you Google for my email address I hand out to potential employers and gives a very good impression of my skills and abilities. It is known that they will search for you, use it to your advantage.
  • KattMan 2007-12-20 15:37
    GalacticCowboy:

    The headhunter said "I really don't think your political views have any business on your resume." I wasn't sure whether to laugh or run, so I mutely handed him a "real" copy of my resume, nicely printed and formatted - and without any "political views" in sight. He looked at it blankly for a second and then said "Thank you for your time."

    They never called me back.


    I'm surprised you let them have a clean copy. I would have shown it to him and left with it still in hand. They have already shown a lack of ethics in representation, what makes you think they won't send your clean resume along just to pad their submission count; the "dirty" one won't even go out their door.
  • emurphy 2007-12-20 15:38
    vt_mruhlin:

    Also, do a few vanity googles to see what's associated with your real name. My name is fairly uncommon, but there's one other, and he plays college rugby, so it ends up looking like I'm some big rugby fan. If your name happens to be Cho Seung-Hui or something, try to jokingly work it into the interview before they ask about it.


    My name happens to be Eddie Murphy. Fortunately, I can pull off a decent deadpan.

    eric76:
    I like country and western suits best.

    The way I figure it is that if I show up to an interview in a country and western suit and they don't like it, then they are probably too stuffy anyway.


    A nice new pair of kicks, huh?
  • GalacticCowboy 2007-12-20 15:45
    KattMan:
    GalacticCowboy:

    The headhunter said "I really don't think your political views have any business on your resume." I wasn't sure whether to laugh or run, so I mutely handed him a "real" copy of my resume, nicely printed and formatted - and without any "political views" in sight. He looked at it blankly for a second and then said "Thank you for your time."

    They never called me back.


    I'm surprised you let them have a clean copy. I would have shown it to him and left with it still in hand. They have already shown a lack of ethics in representation, what makes you think they won't send your clean resume along just to pad their submission count; the "dirty" one won't even go out their door.


    Yeah, I probably wasn't thinking the most clearly. :)
  • ParkinT 2007-12-20 16:24
    KattMan:
    vt_mruhlin:

    It's probably just me, but I start to feel really awkward if I'm the only one in the room wearing a suit. So much so that it degrades my performance in the interview, makes me look like a retard. Shirt and tie with no coat keeps me feeling a little more at ease, and still looking presentable.


    Actually wear the suit. If the place is a bit more casual, just remove the jacket so you dress down to their level. Much easier to do that then to find a good jacket that matches if you need to add one.

    As for the addresses, I use two different email addresses and two different identities and keep them virtually separated so the two do not cross paths with each other. One is seen if you Google for my email address I hand out to potential employers and gives a very good impression of my skills and abilities. It is known that they will search for you, use it to your advantage.

    True story:
    I was contacted by Google for a job. Not in search of a new job, I was quite flattered so agreed to a phone interview.
    During the interview I (casually) mentioned that if you search on my name in Google, you will see the breadth and longevity of my experience on the Internet. What surprised me was that this person - an employee of google - had never thought of that!
    As I said it, I assumed it was a 'given' and expected a reaction like, "sure, that's what I did. I always do". But she actually had never thought of it!!!
    I was floored.
  • Anonymous 2007-12-20 16:42
    ParkinT:
    KattMan:
    vt_mruhlin:

    It's probably just me, but I start to feel really awkward if I'm the only one in the room wearing a suit. So much so that it degrades my performance in the interview, makes me look like a retard. Shirt and tie with no coat keeps me feeling a little more at ease, and still looking presentable.


    Actually wear the suit. If the place is a bit more casual, just remove the jacket so you dress down to their level. Much easier to do that then to find a good jacket that matches if you need to add one.

    As for the addresses, I use two different email addresses and two different identities and keep them virtually separated so the two do not cross paths with each other. One is seen if you Google for my email address I hand out to potential employers and gives a very good impression of my skills and abilities. It is known that they will search for you, use it to your advantage.

    True story:
    I was contacted by Google for a job. Not in search of a new job, I was quite flattered so agreed to a phone interview.
    During the interview I (casually) mentioned that if you search on my name in Google, you will see the breadth and longevity of my experience on the Internet. What surprised me was that this person - an employee of google - had never thought of that!
    As I said it, I assumed it was a 'given' and expected a reaction like, "sure, that's what I did. I always do". But she actually had never thought of it!!!
    I was floored.

    What matters is: did you get the job? If yes, what professional experience did you have? (I imagine that it's got to be pretty darn good if THEY decided to contact YOU)
  • anon 2007-12-20 17:36
    vt_mruhlin:
    What are your thoughts on saying "I don't know, but here's a crazy guess. In the real world I'd be googling the answer right now"?


    It depends, for easy questions it may actually make things worse because you may come out as someone who doesn’t know much (but simply overrelies on google). The problem with that is that google takes some time to use and since you don’t know the information your brain can’t combine it with other things when solving somewhat related problems. This is of course all heavily dependent on just what type of position you’re applying for and how you answer other questions.

    At the same time I do wish some candidates I interviewed did say that or something close to it. I can only hope they’d do so if they encountered this problem in reality as there are some obscenely complex solutions in literature to the problem which can be much better than the simple solutions.
  • deworde 2007-12-20 17:51
    Didn't Haylee realise you'd heard this stuff before?
  • Your floor is now clean! 2007-12-20 18:24
    kirk:
    Actually, Haylee wasn't in HR. [...] She is a robot.


    Were you able to read her EULA before taking her out of her package, or only after you'd agreed to it?
  • Franz Kafka 2007-12-20 19:10
    [quote user="vt_mruhlin"][quote user="Ursus Americanus"]
    Also, do a few vanity googles to see what's associated with your real name. My name is fairly uncommon, but there's one other, and he plays college rugby, so it ends up looking like I'm some big rugby fan. If your name happens to be Cho Seung-Hui or something, try to jokingly work it into the interview before they ask about it.[/quote]

    You'd think they'd figure out by you still being live. But at least you aren't Michael Bolton.
  • milmin 2007-12-20 19:46
    I don't understand the point of going back for an interview when you already know you don't want the job and it's a terrible company to work for.

    Because akatherde, never let the truth get in the way of a good story.
  • Nick Mudge 2007-12-20 20:38
    Well programming in assembly sounds like fun.
  • Grimoire 2007-12-20 21:06
    Wow, replace "INDUSTRY LEADING travel company" with, "INDUSTRY LEADING wireless company", one year anniversary with 6 month anniversary, add in 13 rounds of layoffs, and change re-interview years later with contract offer 1 month later, and you have my previous job.
  • del 2007-12-20 21:11
    I'm guessing that the bridge was never even exposed to anything above room temperature. Else, how could the *same* HR blonde^W bonehead^W person interview a former employee without even a hint of recognition?
  • kindall 2007-12-20 21:23
    Ursus Americanus:
    This is absolutely true. I find that you are much more likely to receive a job offer if you ask your interviewer questions about the company. In general, the more questions, the better. It shows interest - which interviewers like - and you will learn, for yourself, if you really do want to work at that company.


    Not only does it show interest, it gives the interviewer an opportunity to talk about himself (or at least his company), which makes you seem like an absolutely brilliant conversationalist. Dale Carnegie, in his book "How To Win Friends and Influence People," tells a tale of an evening he spent allowing a woman he met at a party to talk about herself. She later reported that he was so very interesting to talk to...
  • Craig 2007-12-20 22:17
    The real WTF is that he stayed there 4 years.
  • ThatGuy 2007-12-20 22:37
    Another important question for most companies I've interviewed is to get an idea as to the state of the company. If they're publicly traded, look at their stock price and public filings before you go in there. Check out their website, and see how desperate for sales they look. Once you've done some research on that, ask your interviewer about it. Be as specific as you can.

    This often goes along with "Why are you interested in hiring people?", but it's also a separate issue: You want somewhere that's doing well enough that they can afford you easily, and can afford the raises you'll want later on.
  • GeorgineVJ 2007-12-20 23:22
    awesome. =)
  • Daniel L 2007-12-21 02:52
    That's a very fascinating story, and educating at the same time. Thanks for sharing 'Kirk!'
  • irokie 2007-12-21 03:59
    I got called up for a phone-screen with google and the first question I was asked was "How's the third one?" and I could clearly hear the grin on the caller's face. Puzzled, I thought for a minute and reluctantly said "huh?" (a word that should really never be uttered in an interview).

    Turns out the guy had googled me and was making a reference to the fictional biography on my band's website which said that I had a third testicle and had spent a year as a woman (but had gone back to being a dude because as a woman I was expected to wash occasionally).

    I guess the moral of this story is that if you're going to be googled by a potential employer, you better a) hope they have a sense of humour or b) make sure your name is squeaky clean when checked.
  • ChZEROHag 2007-12-21 04:08
    ParkinT:
    I've got chills!!


    They're multiplying.
  • Magic Clog 2007-12-21 04:39
    So, I've re-interviewd in the past for a job. I must admit to agreeing to it for the main reason of seeing what the company was like now.
    Way back when I joined at the tail end of the dot com boom, when they were recruiting like mad and had pots o'cash. Then almost immediately after joining, there was a pay freeze, slow stripping of fringe benefits (no company bought pizza for late night coding sessions etc) and eventually lay-offs. I managed to stay three years before leaving. Anyway since then I've been working for myself as an independant consultant and when I saw the old job advertised, I must admit to being intrigued, so I agreed to an interview.

    The company had had a management buyout, been givenpots o'cash by a VERY large media company and things seemed to be looking up. All the people who were still there from when i left had all had payrises (backdated) Unfortunately, I didn't get the job. ;o)
  • Olivia 2007-12-21 06:51
    ChZEROHag:
    ParkinT:
    I've got chills!!


    They're multiplying.


    Stop it! I'm losing control!
  • AnonymousFan 2007-12-21 07:18

    Hi there.


    You've got a lot of really entertaining content lately!

    Keep up the good work!

  • rm -rf 2007-12-21 08:49
    ParkinT:

    True story:
    I was contacted by Google for a job. Not in search of a new job, I was quite flattered so agreed to a phone interview.
    During the interview I (casually) mentioned that if you search on my name in Google, you will see the breadth and longevity of my experience on the Internet. What surprised me was that this person - an employee of google - had never thought of that!


    I had just the opposite experience with Google. When I asked them how they found me, the recruiter paused, and said 'Google?'

  • Bartman 2007-12-21 09:07
    Craig:
    The real WTF is that he stayed there 4 years.


    Amen Craig. I am always amazed at how people dither about whether or not they should leave a company that is TF'ed (the "T" stands for truly). Think of the opportunity cost that Kirk inflicted on himself for staying at that company for 4 years right at the beginning of the Dot.com era...it is staggering.

    Companies certainly don't have any compunction about doing what is in their own self interest such as freezing wages, downsizing, right sizing, and eliminating pensions for bullshit 401Ks.

    American workers have been marginalized to contract status as they can be fired at any time and have minimal health and pension benefits; yet, they don't get paid as well as true contractors. Oh and don't get me started on outsourcing.

    Happy holidays...
  • FredSaw 2007-12-21 09:18
    Olivia:
    ChZEROHag:
    ParkinT:
    I've got chills!!


    They're multiplying.


    Stop it! I'm losing control!
    The comment you're supplying? It's electrifying.
  • Freddoo 2007-12-21 09:37
    when i leave a company i usually burn the bridge just to make sure i won't go back somewhere i did not like.

    eventhough i was called back once to get a nice offer 20k below my current salary. i knew there was a reason i left.
  • Merijn 2007-12-21 10:01
    steve:
    You always hear about people stretching the truth or lying outright on their resumes...this is an example of why it's nice to personally know someone who works for the company that you interview with - otherwise, who holds them accountable?


    The Network holds liars accountable. I got an IM from a former co-worker when someone, let's call him Bob, applied for a job. Bob claimed to have worked for a client where I had worked in the same period of time. Actually, he was thrown out in less than a week for not being capable. The fact that Bob lied came to light this way, and well, my former co-workers company didn't hire him.
  • Mel 2007-12-21 10:34
    ThatGuy:
    If they're publicly traded, look at their stock price and public filings before you go in there.


    That assumes that you actually understand stuff like that. I don't - and I have tried.

    About questions in general: I don't like asking questions when I'm in an interview. I know that I'm not always good at making myself understand, especially when I'm nervous, and most often when I do try to ask something it comes out wrong and I get flustered and even more nervous. If I do need to ask something, I will, but I will avoid it if I can.

    I have found I'm a fairly good judge of whether I like the place based on what I see / hear / feel around me (at least, I've been right about everywhere I've ended up working, or later found out more about).
  • billswift 2007-12-21 10:38
    Re: The Re-Interview
    2007-12-20 12:31 • by akatherder
    I don't understand the point of going back for an interview when you already know you don't want the job and it's a terrible company to work for.


    Insatiable curiosity. I might have done the same thing.
  • FredSaw 2007-12-21 11:08
    Mel:
    About questions in general: I don't like asking questions when I'm in an interview. I know that I'm not always good at making myself understand, especially when I'm nervous, and most often when I do try to ask something it comes out wrong and I get flustered and even more nervous. If I do need to ask something, I will, but I will avoid it if I can.

    I have found I'm a fairly good judge of whether I like the place based on what I see / hear / feel around me (at least, I've been right about everywhere I've ended up working, or later found out more about).
    I agree with the American bear--you should have questions prepared, and ask them.

    When I first came to Dallas in 2000, I had spent five years working for the same company, out in the sticks. I had no experience at interviewing for IT positions in the metroplex. I read a couple of websites offering tips on interviewing; they both advised preparing questions to ask. At the time, I dismissed this as unnecessary.

    I interviewed for a position with McAfee, of ViruScan fame. The technical part went quite well and I was confident of getting the position, when the interviewer asked, "Do you have any questions you'd like to ask us?" I replied, no, I didn't, and his face fell. After a couple of awkward moments he picked up the thread again and continued on, but shortly he asked again, "Are you sure you don't have anything to ask me?" I again replied that I did not. And I could tell by his expression that my lack of preparedness had just cost me that position. He quickly wrapped up the interview and I left, determined to go to my next interview properly prepared.

    A few days later I interviewed for my current position, and just as Ursus said, I came with a leather-bound notebook containing several questions. These mostly related to their development processes. For example:

    Do you have a dedicated QA staff to do testing of software? If not, what is your testing process?
    What is your approach to continuing education for your employees? How often do you provide training for them, and what type of training is it?
    What development tools and platform do you use?
    Do you attempt to keep pace with growth in the IT field by regularly upgrading your tools and platform? If not, how often do you upgrade?
    In my assignments, what will be the ratio of new development to maintenance of legacy applications?

    ...and so forth. These questions are not difficult to ask, particularly if you read them straight from your leather-bound notebook as they are worded here. Nor are you being presumptious by asking them. Instead, you're demonstrating that you are interested in working in a healthy, progressive environment where management understands the necessity of good tools and continuing training.
  • ParkinT 2007-12-21 11:13
    FredSaw:
    Olivia:
    ChZEROHag:
    ParkinT:
    I've got chills!!


    They're multiplying.


    Stop it! I'm losing control!
    The comment you're supplying? It's electrifying.

    Grease, it's the word...
  • m0j0 2007-12-21 11:22
    Patrick:
    Air quotes are a dead giveaway that you don't want to work there.

    Actually, back in 1994, air quotes weren't necessarily a bad sign. The ISP market was just taking off and they were peddling dial-up 28.8k access only. You still had a lot of Windows 3.x users using Trumpet Winsock and the original Netscape browser.

    I worked for an ISP back in 1994, and I remember those days. The dot-com boom didn't pick up speed until 1997 or so.
  • Cloak 2007-12-21 12:00
    Grimoire:
    Wow, replace "INDUSTRY LEADING travel company" with, "INDUSTRY LEADING wireless company", one year anniversary with 6 month anniversary, add in 13 rounds of layoffs, and change re-interview years later with contract offer 1 month later, and you have my previous job.


    It's a pity, I tried to get this job but they seem to have given up.
  • Christopher 2007-12-21 12:01
    ParkinT:

    As I said it, I assumed it was a 'given' and expected a reaction like, "sure, that's what I did. I always do". But she actually had never thought of it!!!
    I was floored.


    Google uses Paula Bean to interview people?
  • Zygo 2007-12-21 12:35
    AnonymousFan:

    Hi there.


    You've got a lot of really entertaining content lately!

    Keep up the good work!



    Nice try, Alex, but we all know it's really you. ;-)
  • GalacticCowboy 2007-12-21 12:54
    Freddoo:
    when i leave a company i usually burn the bridge just to make sure i won't go back somewhere i did not like.


    In the particular market where I work (Indianapolis), the total market is small enough that your chances of cross-pollenation are very high. At every position I've had in the past 5 years I have encountered someone who I either knew before or who directly knows someone I knew before. I know several individuals who have burned a bridge that returned to haunt them later.
  • athloi 2007-12-21 13:46
    I'm so glad he went back for the second interview.

    Curiosity is a healthy value.

    If I saw them posting the same ad as before, I'd want to go and see how gnarly it was. It gives you a final perspective on the situation, like a bookend, and you can then move on knowing what actually happened.

    At this point in my cynical life, I might not have waited as long to leave the first time, but that's experience talking, which I didn't have at my first few gigs.
  • A Gould 2007-12-21 13:53
    WhiskeyJack:
    This is the very first time I have read a story on TDWTF and thought, "No way, this can't possibly be true."


    Easily true - a local (non-tech) company has used the same ad in the paper for 10 years (and until maybe a year ago, the exact same overinflated "up to $X" pay scale).
  • gremlin 2007-12-21 15:39
    FredSaw:
    Olivia:
    ChZEROHag:
    ParkinT:
    I've got chills!!


    They're multiplying.


    Stop it! I'm losing control!
    The comment you're supplying? It's electrifying.

    You better shape up.
  • clively 2007-12-21 15:58
    FredSaw:
    A few days later I interviewed for my current position, and just as Ursus said, I came with a leather-bound notebook containing several questions. These mostly related to their development processes.


    Given the market lately, I've found that I am weeding out companies more than they are weeding out candidates.

    A couple weeks ago I interviewed with a company for "new development work, cutting edge", etc. When it was my turn to ask questions, I asked what they actually needed help on. This led into the company's idea of an "ideal" career path. Which was: start in support (yes, answering the phones), then move to maintenance programming, and after a couple years I would be able to join the new development team. They then asked if I was interested.

    I've been doing development for 15+ years; with most of it being new over the past 10 of that. So I told the interviewers that perhaps they needed to find someone a bit more junior. Like maybe just out of high school.

    Yes, asking questions is an absolute must.
  • dlikhten 2007-12-21 17:38
    Sounds like a great scam. I heard of shit like this happening before...

    My uncle had his raises halted for 7 yrs for financial troubles, then the owners bought a Ferrarri! Each! And I think more than 1. He just left in a snap.

    Its not a WTF but I found it funny that it still existed.
  • Dude 2007-12-21 17:42
    Is there going to be a Christmas WTF???
  • BD 2007-12-21 19:44
    akatherder:
    I don't understand the point of going back for an interview when you already know you don't want the job and it's a terrible company to work for.


    It's obviously not a completely true story. However, it may still say true things about industry and about real human experiences.
  • Sack Scratcherton 2007-12-22 02:40
    akatherder:
    I don't understand the point of going back for an interview when you already know you don't want the job and it's a terrible company to work for.


    I would have, just for the sake of having a good story to tell.

    Disclaimer: this is not a wise manner in which to live your life. It has gotten me into trouble on multiple occasions.
  • hayalci 2007-12-22 12:20

    PS: Social-networking is the next most obnoxious and meaningless buzzwords right after Web 2.0.


    Actually, the next big buzzword is "semantic web"
  • Ted 2007-12-22 14:44
    Ooh ooh ooh. I need a man!
  • Fred 2007-12-23 00:31
    GalacticCowboy:
    Freddoo:
    when i leave a company i usually burn the bridge just to make sure i won't go back somewhere i did not like.


    In the particular market where I work (Indianapolis), the total market is small enough that your chances of cross-pollenation are very high. At every position I've had in the past 5 years I have encountered someone who I either knew before or who directly knows someone I knew before. I know several individuals who have burned a bridge that returned to haunt them later.


    I work in Indy too. Are you working as a contractor at Lilly and bumping into former coworkers?

    I don't think the market is that small.

    OT: You could probably make an entire site about how much it sucks to do IT work at Lilly.
  • D2oris 2007-12-23 03:56
    Ted:
    gremlin:
    FredSaw:
    Olivia:
    ChZEROHag:
    ParkinT:
    I've got chills!!
    They're multiplying.
    Stop it! I'm losing control!
    The comment you're supplying? It's electrifying.
    You better shape up.
    Ooh ooh ooh. I need a man!
    Who can keep me satisfied!
  • baboo 2007-12-23 07:25
    Benanov:
    (Mainly this keeps you from thinking that your ex was the best you'll ever have.)


    He he... I saw this bathroom stall graffiti at one of my old college bars, and it's stayed with me to this day:

    "No matter how cute you think she is, someone, somewhere, is sick of her shit."
  • yanman 2007-12-23 07:40
    If they google me on my name, I'm screwed.

    http://www.google.be/search?hl=nl&q=%22yannick+mattheus%22&meta=

    There is a guy who is 2 years younger ( thank god his birth date is on the profile page, that might hint HR that he's not me ) and he has a profile page on http://www.partyanimal.be/yannickskueeeeeh , which conveniently shows up first when googling my name.

    His paged used to be filled with swastikas, and he uses a bad form of Flemish internet slang.

    The other 3 hits are actually me, on a school website, and 2 clan-gaming websites.
    Let's hope they never google me >.>
  • Tigger 2007-12-24 07:58
    akatherder:
    I don't understand the point of going back for an interview when you already know you don't want the job and it's a terrible company to work for.

    Easy - sheer morbid curiosity... besides, I don't think he did know yet that he didn't want it - it *might* have actually changed...
  • merry xmas 2007-12-24 13:54
    yeah. first company I worked for out of college (.com) let half the staff go 2 weeks before Christmas. That's 22 people out of a 43 person company, none of whom had C*O in their title. The (6) C*O's kept their jobs.
  • MrEleganza 2007-12-26 11:51
    D2oris:
    Ted:
    gremlin:
    FredSaw:
    Olivia:
    ChZEROHag:
    ParkinT:
    I've got chills!!
    They're multiplying.
    Stop it! I'm losing control!
    The comment you're supplying? It's electrifying.
    You better shape up.
    Ooh ooh ooh. I need a man!
    Who can keep me satisfied!


    I think the OP needs to go back an interview a THIRD time. He'd probably be told by the HR recruiter, "you're the one that I want."
  • anon 2008-01-19 20:54
    One word on this one..... Marconi
  • Fizzl 2008-01-21 07:35
    ParkinT:

    During the interview I (casually) mentioned that if you search on my name in Google, you will see the breadth and longevity of my experience on the Internet.

    If you search for my name in Google, you will find I seem to have split personality. One, coding at nights on weird hack projects, going by the pseudonym "Fizzl". And the other one; formally educated orchestral conductor, working in the musical programme service industry.

    I think one of these has a future...
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  • Does it matter? 2011-03-21 10:18
    I must say.. this has to be the dumbest smart guy I've seen in a long time..

    "Teeeeeeens of milllions..." "We're going places!"..
    TWO RED FLAGS in a row..

    No serious company would hire such idiots in HR..
  • ObiWayneKenobi 2013-06-12 15:49
    This story is extremely frightening. To throw away most of your life working for a single company without any promotions or presumably raises is absolutely terrifying.

    I get bored at jobs within a year if the work isn't exciting and there isn't advancement potential. I've worked with some people that have stayed in companies for years, and their complacent attitudes about everything scare the daylights out of me; it's like something out of a horror movie with lobotomized cult members.
  • wow 2014-08-27 08:05
    Does it matter?:
    I must say.. this has to be the dumbest smart guy I've seen in a long time..

    "Teeeeeeens of milllions..." "We're going places!"..
    TWO RED FLAGS in a row..

    No serious company would hire such idiots in HR..


    Oh god. You stupid, stupid, stupid STUPID cunt.