Story Time: Pandemic Job Interviews Horror Stories
Coronavirus Pandemic Times have changed so much, including the job interview process. There’s more phone interviews, zoom interviews and you might get an in person interview.
Last year, like for most everyone was a tough year. I was furloughed in April. Then, finally let go in November. In those 9 months I held hope that I would return to my previous employer as that was what I was continuously told by HR and then boom I was let go.
Everything happens for a reason. I wasn’t meant to be there anymore. My blood pressure has gone back to normal, I have no panic attacks anymore and I regained my smile that I had lost because of the stress I had from that job.
And although I was miserable in all the years I worked there, it was still a job that would pay my bills and I honestly thought that was all I could really ask for in life.
I don’t believe that anymore. I’m grateful for that experience but I want a job that promotes positivity, growth and learning for all.
It’s been tough finding another job though. And I want to get back to work. I want to have a routine again. I want to feel like I have a purpose. And I don’t want to stress if unemployment benefits will be approved by the government ever couple of months.
Job Interview Horror Story #1
About a month ago, I went through a rigorous phone interview process that took several weeks. The HR rep called me all the time, at random times, no appointment, even after hours and weekends. I figured they needed someone right away which is why they were calling me so much and asking me so many questions.
Finally, I was told I had an in person interview the next day. The morning of the interview I felt weird. My spidey-senses were tingling on over drive. I told my mom that I didn’t feel right about this interview. She tells me to Google the person in interviewing with.
Thank God, I did what my mama said.
First of all, my mom is the best. Second, what we found was well… you should be the judge of what we found. Turns out the owner of the company was convicted of running over an employee who was trying to get money owed to him from the owner. The owner ended up killing the employee.
Once we read that I had remembered the HR rep had told me that the owner sometimes isn’t so nice.
That’s beyond not being nice, he’s a murderer.
That’s all I needed to email the HR rep to let them know I had found another opportunity and that I wouldn’t be going to the appointment. Yes, this was a lie. But I couldn’t very well say “Yea, no, I won’t be attending the interview because I googled the owner of the company and turns out he’s a murderer and I don’t really want to work for a murderer. Thanks but no thanks. Good luck on your search.”
I believe in being honest but I can’t be THAT honest. It’s borderline rude.
I’ve been traumatized. I know that word is over used. But truly, I’m actually quite disgusted by all that I read about the owner and that company.
Also, the owner has a YouTube channel with a few hundred subscribers and has several ebook on how to improve your YouTube channel, vine, Instagram, snapchat, and others. How can you write a book on a subject that you cant even make money off yet as he has less than 1,000 subscribers (which means he cannot make money on ads yet)?
He’s just a little fraudy to me.
I haven’t stopped looking for a job. I’m constantly applying, updating my resume to cater to each job description I apply for and constantly revising my cover letter for reach job. I’m no stranger to looking for a job as I’ve been applying for jobs constantly for over 3 years.
Not so long ago, I conducted an experiment, where I applied for 50 jobs in 2 days using LinkedIn easy job applications. These were jobs I qualified for and were in my area or remote. I only heard back from 5 of those jobs. 5. I received a thank you for applying messages, two “we will get back to you” (I’m still waiting to hear back) emails and two thanks but no thanks emails. That’s it.
Job Interview of Horror #2
Yesterday, I had my first interview in a long time. I was excited, ready, I had researched the company, I had notes and I had questions ready.
A HR higher up reached out to me on LinkedIn. They sent me a job description that looked like I could be really amazing for this role. It seemed like a good fit. They offered to train so no experience was necessary. I do have years of experience in this particular field so that was a plus (his words, not mine).
During the phone interview it seemed like it was going great. He laughed. I laughed. He asked me questions about my background. I answered. He replied with “great”. And not “great” in a sarcastic way.
Then, he finds a gap in my employment since November. He asked me what happened. I told him I was let go due to the pandemic.
He then asked me “so what have you been up to since?”
What I should have said, if I was honest, was “well, I started growing avocados from seed, I have a science experiment of cups of seeds all over my kitchen. I learned how to grow and keep plants alive. I’ve ate strawberries and tomatoes that I’ve grown myself. I learned how to make avocado toast every morning. I started a YouTube channel. I’ve bonded with my mom like never before in the last year. I recently paid off all my credit card debt with all the money I’ve saved from stimulus and unemployment benefits. Oh and I saved an outside feral kitty who takes up way too much of my time and is going to be super sad when I start working again.”
I was honest just not THAT honest. I told him I was taking online courses. I had taken a few graphic design courses, HR courses and now I’m taking a Google User Experience Design Certification Program.
He abruptly said that’s all the questions he had for me and that if I had any to ask now. I asked a few.
I thought it went well.
Until the next morning I received a message from the HR higher up saying thanks but no thanks.
I think my mistake was when I told him I was taking a Certification program. It was fine all up until then.
I ask you, should I have been honest and open about what I’ve really been up to? Or should I have kept that to myself?
Also, I’d like to know, would you have gone to an interview with someone you just realized had killed someone? Did I make the right choice?
Honesty is the best policy. But is it always?
Wishing you better luck in your interviews than I have had.