I applied for Creative Director-Copy for Healthcare Publications-heavy writing. My perfect job if ever was one. I'm heavy on the writing and I have experience managing a small department of creatives. And the salary is pie-in-the-sky- six figures! Seriously, who gets that kind of money?
Then I got a call-from a recruiter-for the job! YES! I speak with her. She asks me about my background. I tell her. She asks for my current salary-hmmm, I put it 25% lower than the job-which is still 100 percent higher than I've ever made. But I KNOW I can do this job.
She wants to interview me on Monday- the recruiter mind you- not the company looking. Sigh. I've been through so many recruiter interviews now. They all "love" me- but then can't sell to the client. I want to be excited-but really- I'm a realist. Based on my experiences so far, the chances of even interviewing with the company are slim to none. Then she sends me the info- she needs my resume cut and pasted on her letter head. She needs me to fill out a three page paper full of short essay questions. These questions include: The structure of your last work place department-three good reasons to hire you and one weakness-a list of the five top companies you would want to work for-and why-and why you would fit in there, etc. and six work references-managers, subordinates and peers... (There weren't that many people in the department where I used to work. I sent her four.) She wants me to write a "Sizzler" paragraph in third person highlighting my tactical advantages. Finally- a list of all the places I've applied this year-right- I sent her a list of only the jobs in her area that I've applied for since JUNE-and had two and a half single spaced pages. I think that is more than enough information. I also sent her a list of where I've interviewed and why I thought I didn't get it-(Because all those employers are idiots...) No, I said over qualified or under qualified....
Two days of work-filling out her forms, revising, highlighting. Then I called the references and clued them in that she said she would "call" them and ask specific questions. I told them what I told her-so we all have the story straight. the I had to apologize for the white lies I told and try to keep the salary straight...crazy. I discovered something new about myself- If ever I'm asked if I would lie through my teeth for a six figure salary- the answer is not just yes...it's Hell yes!
What makes me sad is that after all the work and the lies...and the hour and a half train trip into town... there is no guarantee that I'll even see the door of the company looking to fill the job. Meanwhile my references discovered that I would lie for money...and I've discovered I'm not certain I like myself for it.