Friday, June 06, 2008

Jumping Through Hoops

After the 10:05 debacle yesterday morning, Jane (not her real name) the Consultant redeemed herself a little bit at 2:00 with a much better phone interview.

However, I'm really not very jazzed about this organization's interview process.

At the phone interview yesterday, I was allotted exactly fifteen minutes of time. I know this because she started out with "in the next fifteen minutes, I want to ask you..." and a minute later she said, "well, within the next fourteen minutes, let's go over..." She probably had a stopwatch on her desk. And she still had me on speakerphone.

She asked me a series of rapid-fire questions, mostly about event planning, which I've done before, although she didn't seem to understand the difference between a straight-up fundraiser and a cultivation event. I specialize in cultivation events. After I explained the difference, she seemed to like my answers better. I managed to neatly turn around a question about weaknesses into an answer about my strengths in multitasking. And she told me I had a fantastic phone presence.

At the end of our fifteen minutes, she told me she wanted to schedule me for a ten minute phone call with the Executive Director. She told me that the ED's time was very valuable and she would need me to provide thoughtful and quick answers, so as to make the most of the call. (This morning the recruiter called to find out my availability over the weekend.)

I was asked for writing samples, and a logistics chart for an event I'd planned. Those I sent in this morning. If I do well from the ED's call and the work samples, then apparently I'll get to take a management assessment test, and then, if my scores are satisfactory, I'll win: an in-person interview.

Honestly, red flags are popping up all over the place. I've never had this level of scrutiny before, and I'm oddly reminded of a Dilbert cartoon, with Catbert, the Evil HR Director laughing at me on the other end of the phone. I'm willing to play along to an extent, but really, I'm going to take the phone call with the ED as a make-it-or-break-it point. If I don't enjoy the call with the ED, I'm going to remove myself from the candidate pool. After all, I'm a human being, not a trained dog in the circus.

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