While waiting for the courtship to continue (translation – flying to the home office to meet everyone face-to-face) with Agency A, an old suitor just happened to come a-calling. Imagine my surprise.

Yes, some will say, “when it rains it pours”. And, true, some will say my patience up until now was rewarded with all of this recent courtship activity. And, conversely, others would say I just happened to be a fairly lucky jamoke.

Regardless, I was all of a sudden put into an unfamiliar role…having to satisfy multiple requests for my attention.

And, I have no experience juggling two girlfriends at once….literally OR figuratively.

Regular readers will recall my adventure earlier this year with an agency and a job I wanted. Ultimately I wasn’t selected for that position, but all in I had had a fairly good experience. At that time, I would have had to move cities. But, the situation would have been worth the change. Well, nearly a year later, that particular agency (Agency B) called me out of the blue, asked me if I was still interested in them…although for a different position…and when I said yes, told me they’d be calling back shortly.

This was what was then in my head when I flew to meet with the principals at Agency A. I knew I had a pretty solid lead “in my back pocket” while I went to get the “once-over” and take the “look-see”. For the most part (foreshadowing), the trip was uneventful. I arrived, took the taxi to the hotel, checked in, called home, and then went to sleep. The next morning I drank some coffee, had a muffin, did a little touch-up pressing to my suit, and then walked to the location for the interviews. Uneventful so far, right? Right.

I was told by the Admin (mentioned here) upon arrival the names of the people with whom I would be meeting. I was given names, but not titles or departments. This would turn out to be an issue later on. I was informed that the first scheduled interview was currently occupied with something else more pressing and so the interview rotation was being adjusted. As a result, the first person I met was none other than the Mr. Somebody Important (with whom I had had a swell fone interview). However, when he walked into the room for the interview his facial expression changed noticeably and I knew instantly I was not what he had been expecting. The interview went nowhere fast after that. Granted, there wasn’t an overt issue…and nothing was directly or indirectly stated…but, I knew this guy didn’t want to hire me. He had said one thing on the fone. He acted very differently upon meeting face to face. And, truth be told, I probably would have had a problem with his management style anyway. I could tell he was a closet micro-manager. At the end of the hour he excused himself and wished me luck with the rest of the people whom I would meet. I thanked him for the interview.

I don’t believe I did poorly in that actual interview. But, maybe I could have said/done something during that hour to change what was his first impression. But, I will never know.

I believe I impressed person number two, though. He and I had some similar stories/experiences.

Person number three was the person who had originally been my initial interview. Turns out he was the CEO of the agency.

Now you know why titles and department names are important for interviewers.

Had the CEO been my first interview right out of the gate…along with not knowing his role (importance) in the agency, I surely would have been sent home before lunch. I would have bombed. As it was I don’t believe I did as well with him as I could have, even with the adjusted schedule.

Plain and simple, he was in a hurry.

Person number four was my lunch date. He and I hit it off and traded war stories. I felt as if I could have easily worked with him.

Person number five was the Head of the Internet Department. Wow. Suffice it to say I now understand why I have not been hired (let alone even considered) by any interactive agencies. If he represents the “look” required in those fine establishments, I’m from the wrong epoch. Clothes, hair style, glasses, mannerisms…everything was off the wall. Everything would scare every client I had ever serviced. Regardless, I believe he and I hit it off as well. I probably could have gotten used to his “look”…and I know I could have learned some stuff from him.

Person number six was actually a subordinate to the position for which I was interviewing. She was very capable and competent and surely put into the schedule to assess my skill as a manager and supervisor. I believe I performed well here too. She was the only one to give me a business card at the conclusion of the interview.

Person number seven was the last and final interview. Turns out he was the CFO and part owner of the company. He’s the one who made an issue of the “not giving me the titles oversight”. To quote, “I have told them repeatedly. We need to include titles and departments when we invite people in to our shop. This is a reflection on us. This is not how we should operate. I’m sorry. Do you know who I am?”

As I smiled, “I figured it out, sir.”

He was definitely someone for whom I could work. He inspired loyalty. And, the interview with him went very well.

Before leaving I asked the Admin if I could meet with Mr. Somebody Important for a few short minutes just to recap and conclude the events of the day. She informed me he was desperately trying to get something out the door for a client and would be unable to meet with me. I thanked her for the assistance and said goodbye. In summary, I had two so-so interviews and five successful interviews…I think.

Then I took a taxi to the airport. While waiting for my departure, I purchased a gift for each of the kids.

It had been a long day.

But, that’s not the end of the story.

 

(to be concluded)

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