Monday, April 20, 2009

The search may be over

It's amazing to think that I've not been working for nearly six months. Granted the first two I was still getting paid, but it was still time I didn't know what to do with myself.

During the past month, I've had interview with two companies. The first company is a well-respected company in the area. They've been around for more than 25 years and accomplished huge things for their industry. As great as it is to have this company on one's resume, working there can be less than satisfactory depending on which department. In a former life, I probably would have been quite happy there. In my current type of work, however, the culture and expectations are molded to certain types of people. Former specialty consultants, ivy leaguers, and what I would describe as somewhat sorority personalities can do well here. Unfortunately, that's not me.

Several people I've know over the years have gone there thinking this was a dream job and company only to realize within six months that they were unhappy. The hiring process is very rigorous. You must pass two phone interviews, one of which includes a mock scenario. Then, you are asked to take a personality test which they use to assess your fit with the group and customize interview questions to test you ability to respond to negative situations. Hiring is done by consensus so all members of the management team must agree. If another manager wants to hire you, you must also interview with them. I suppose if one manager had a grudge with another person, they could mess with your candidacy.

Being a darling of the industry is also what has caused a major change. A big, foreign company has just offered to buyout the remaining share for the company. Basically they know this U.S. company and its products are worth major moolah and don't want to split profits anymore. They swear there will be no major changes to the company as they want preserve the positive culture and retain employees.

I have my doubts. Wanting to keep employees likely has to do more with the research and development arms of the company as opposed to G&A. Even the interviewing managers, although positive, reveal some concern in their pauses.The last thing I need to start a job where I'll get laid off at the end of the summer.

The second job has been going well. I interviewed with the hiring manager and then visited the company to interview with a handful of others. A week passed and I met again with the hiring manager at a local cafe. It was just a light conversation checking whether I had any additional questions, and obviously it was a chance for me to reinforce my interest in the position.

I'm still not completely sure why, but she then suggested I meet with her boss, the VP, so that I could ask her any additional questions about the department and company. I just went in and had a 45 minute chat with the VP. She asked me twice about why I wanted to join the company. The rest of the time was really me asking questions about her vision for the department and company going forward. I feel like she has a solid vision for the group and how it will help transform the company. It should be a good growth opportunity if I am willing to assert myself.

Tick tock, now I wait for HR to call me and tell me what the next steps are. I get a good sense there planning to offer me a job (unless I did something horribly wrong while talking with the VP). The only question is whether the package will be decent. Admittedly, I've gotten kind of comfortable lounging around in my pjs until 11am and playing with the cats for a hour each day. Then again, it would be nice to have a juicy paycheck every month!

1 comment:

teahouse said...

Hey, that's great that you had two interviews. Good luck!