Several weeks ago, I applied for yet another job. It was not a teaching job, but rather a writing and editing position the description of which was nearly identical to my skills. I was given an interview. After the interview I sent the interviewer a handwritten thank you note. Ten days after the interview, having heard nothing, I called to find out where they were in the candidate selection process.
The interviewer told me, “We’re in the process of finalizing the hiring of another candidate, but you can call back in a week and we’ll let you know if we are going to do any second interviews.
With nothing to lose, a week later I called back as she suggested.
She told me again, “We’re in the process of finalizing the hiring of another candidate.”
Yes, the exact same words. It takes three weeks to “finalize the hiring” of someone for a job that pays in the low five figures? The job listing is still on their website (where others have been removed and new ones appeared). So I’m not sure what to think, except that clearly I’m not a contender for the position.
I asked, “Can you tell me what assets the candidate you selected has which I might not have?
She answered (after a long pause), “No, not really. We look at a combination of objective and subjective things.”
What that tells me: Regardless of my skills and experience, including past experience directly with their company in a similar position, I am not what they want, and they can’t even tell me why.
I’m not sure how to feel about that, except kind of relieved. If they can’t articulate what they want in an employee which I don’t have, if the interviewer spends a full hour talking with me, yet can’t express to me where I failed to meet expectations, how well are they going to communicate needs and objectives during the workday? Probably about as poorly as they did 17 years ago…which is causing me to finally remember why it was somewhat of a relief to resign from the previous job I had with them back in the mid 1990s.
And so I continue toward my third year of ringing up groceries for a living, while searching for an employer who wants more from me than the ability to stand in one spot for 8 hours smiling and asking “Do you want paper or plastic bags today?”