Today I had my first professional interview in about 15 years! Not only that, but it was directly with the hiring manager of a cream-of-the crop Fortune 100 so I expected it would be difficult. Nothing like jumping right in!
To get ready, I had done a lot of research on the company and brushed up on a wide variety of interview questions, etc. Everything started off really quite well….until I hung up on him! Yes, truthfully! I hung up on him! Lord, that was funny!
I had asked the HR coordinator to give the manager my landline number so that the connection would be clear, but in the middle of the call my phone started beeping at me to indicate the battery was running low! I was prepared for this and had brought a second handset to where I was accepting the call but I am apparently incapable of turning on one handset before turning off the other and dropped the call! When I initially heard the beeping I let the manager know what was happening, and he did call back, but I’m sure that did not make a very good impression! I suppose I shouldn’t find it funny, but I did!
Beyond that, the conversation was quite interesting and he seemed to find what I had to say intriguing, too, but ultimately I don’t think that I am the right candidate.
First of all, the job was a good bit broader than I expected and there were a number of questions about reacting to some high pressure situations, I didn’t find either of these aspects overly appealing. Then I was asked how I would go about approaching the job if this company decided to get into making TVs. No, the company is not Apple (who are expected to move into TVs), but close. My initial answer didn’t address some points he was looking for so he had some follow ups and I brought up some additional thoughts and ideas which he liked and said he had never considered.
Lastly, I asked him some questions about company culture and why they seem to be having difficulty filling the position. The feedback I got seemed to confirm that this was a work hard, smart, and long type of a company and the reward was in stock ownership. Also, he remarked that the position was considered a ‘high risk hire’ due to the level of visibility and the value of the products involved and that it often takes a year or more to fill a job at this level (director) and even the level beneath.
The expectations sound a bit rough, and I think they are looking for someone with a much higher level of drive and mental prowess than I possess.
Oh well! I will need to regroup with Charlie next week and consider my next steps. I knew I needed to start taking some interviews to even decide if I wanted to continue along the same career path or not, so at least I am starting to figure that out. I’m relieved for the first one to be over!
My immediate plans are now to start going through my drawers and closets, etc. and start purging!