Saturday, August 9, 2008

I've become comfortably numb

Got a call from a well known drug store corporation. The position was Employee Benefits Communications Manager. I spoke at length with the recruiter who was all smiles on the phone and telling me how I was perfect for the job and she would recommend to send me through for a face to face interview. A week later I get a call setting up the interview. Once again I put on the now twice dry cleaned suit. I arrive on time-sign in- get my badge-go to the HR room. A very large room with cubicles on the ends and many couches and tables in the middle. I wait...and wait...after 30 minutes one of the receptionists in the cubicles calls me over. She takes my prefilled out application form and hands me a clipboard with more forms and points to a desk. I fill out the additional forms and bring them to her. She now sends me to a computer where I sign away my life-allowing any number of invasive background checks-understanding that they will check my body through a physical-drug test, etc. Check my background-credit check, criminal records check. Their demand for the surrendering of my rights makes me feel as if they have strip searched me with a camera-but I submit because I need a job. I am directed back to the chairs...where I wait another 15 minutes. Then a woman from down the hall calls my name...sort of like the doctor's office. I follow her into a glass conference room and sit down at a table. She goes over my paperwork, my portfolio and asks me the now standard..."talk about a time when you X" questions. After 45 minutes of this, she stands up and tells me the next person will be in in a moment. I thank her for her time and sit down...and wait....and wait...and wait... 30 minutes later one of the cubical receptionists pops her head in to tell me the other woman is running a tad bit late...(right) and will be right in...oh, do I want any water? No, I shake my head. I'm fine. (I'd probably spill it on my silk blouse anyway.) She hands me an employee benefit packet for something to look at while I wait. So, I settle into the hard metal chair and wait some more...after another 20 minutes-and just as I've decided to get up and leave in pops the second woman. She apologizes for being late and her appearance-its casual summer... she goes over my stuff- asks more questions. (I have all the right answers.) She nods and writes. Then she looks up and shares the details of the job and how the position fits into the company. I smile and nod- by this time I'm so tired- I'm not comprehending any of the terms she is using-because it is HR and I'm marketing-but I'm a quick learner so I smile and nod and agree. Finally, it's over- she shakes my hand and stands up and says..."We are just getting started in our search so it could be a while before we have second interviews. Don't worry, we'll call." - (Translation: Don't call us, We'll call you.) Big sigh. I thank her for her time as she walks me out- I surrender my badge at the gate and go to my car where I take off the suit coat and settle in for the 40 minute ride to my house.

Eight days later there is the job ad-same job- same title- with the banner-just out today. There is no second phone call. I'm back to combing through, Yahoo!,,,,,, and several corporate websites for new job postings.

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