Reflecting back on times in my working life that have made me laugh and, funnily enough, some of the most entertaining moments have been during job interviews. As a student I needed some extra money to fund the purchase of more Snakebite pints at the student union. I noticed the advert for a sales assistant at the Disney Store and for some reason thought that it would be fun. I found myself (on my second interview for God’s sake!) being judged on how well I performed the pixie dust song. Highly Americanised, the managers expected you to ‘spread the magic of pixie dust’ over your colleagues and customers. I didn’t know what to think when they gave me the job – was I that good at spreading pixie dust – maybe Snakebite actually helped? I could tell you a lot more funny moments at the Disney store – but will save those for another blog.
At the height of my career after graduating, I was interviewed by a Formula One team. Their office was a jaw-droppingly handsome building – more glass than a Grand Designs project, complete with man-made river sweeping past and waterfall to complete the idyllic picture. You could see all the amazing tech and more pristine swanky poshness just standing outside – but how the bloody hell do you get in the building? It was not obvious, well not to me anyway. I walked very slowly to the building to buy me thinking time as to where the door was located. However I soon arrived at what I assumed was the front of the building still none the wiser. I could see a blonde svelte looking receptionist sitting behind a bomb-proof swanky fast-looking desk. She looked at me and I looked at her. I hoped that she was used to people standing in front of the glass doors with a confused ‘how the fuck do I get in’ expression on their face. If so she wasn’t giving any clues. It started to become an uncomfortable length of time standing in front of a building. So, to make it better I started to randomly press panels of glass in front of me. At which point, the young Joanna Lumley looking receptionist smirked and then slowly sauntered over to let me in – just by pushing a few buttons – and then svish svish I was allowed in. Despite this I got the job, even when on my third interview I was asked to create a Q&A briefing sheet and just came up with questions not answers – Doh!
There are other times when you just know it isn’t going to work out and that the hard-nosed bitch in front of you will make your life hell if you get through the interrogation otherwise called an interview. It is times like this when I abandon all hope and start to have some fun instead by dropping in the odd random comment to test their reaction. Once at a Sainsburys interview that wasn’t going anywhere, I suggested they could start using edible bags creating a tasty way of recycling. Oh the chilling north hemisphere stare I got for that was priceless.
Trying to be professional at all times can be a challenge. Once I was doing a telephone interview for a graduate trainee programme while working as a stable hand. Everything was going well until a horse started to snort in the background and I had to explain the reason why and my credibility sunk to a big flat zero.
The great thing about job interviews is the little glimpse you get of the organisation and the people and you never know what random questions they might ask you and what random tests they are going to put you through. So if you have a job interview coming up, don’t sweat. Just enjoy the ride and if they don’t like the package you come in tough shit. I know I have roughly a 80% success rate with interviews to date…..so maybe actually enjoying the process shows – who knows?
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Thanks for your time.