I have a job interview tomorrow. For a full time position at a library. This is a big deal. I am still in school working to get my MLS degree. Full time positions in libraries for people who don’t have the degree yet are almost impossible to find. So naturally, I am super nervous. Please send good vibes my way! I’m going to need them.
Job interviews are the worst. I always wonder if the people doing the interviewing are as miserable as the people being interviewed. It can’t be enjoyable for them either. And I also wonder if they realize that so much of what’s being thrown at them is bullshit. You’re not getting the true me during an interview. I’m way too nervous and eager to please to relax and show you what a totally awesome employee I can be. And I am an awesome employee. Ask anyone I’ve worked with. (Except the people at the Applebee’s where I worked for two weeks before quitting an hour before my shift over the phone. Those people probably hate my guts.)
I wouldn’t outright lie on an interview. (I’m way to scared to do that. All those CSI shows have made people really good at finding out the truth.) But when you ask me why I want the job, I’m not going to tell you the number one reason: I’m poor and can’t afford not to work. Interviews are basically just a game. Can I figure out what the interviewer wants to hear and say it coherently? And the interviewer needs to be able to see through the bullshit and decide what’s actually relevant to the job being offered.
Here’s how a real interview would go if I were being honest with the questions being asked:
Why are you leaving your current position? “Well here’s the thing, I’m not 100% sure if I’m leaving my current position yet. That depends on whether or not you are willing to pay me more than they do. If you are, then I’m leaving my current position cause my employers are cheap. If you aren’t willing to pay me more, then I’m not leaving my current position because you’re cheap.
“Why do you want to work for us? “I have spent the past week sending out 100 resumes a day. Out of those 500 resumes sent, three people contacted me back and you are the only ones who invited me in for an interview. Beggars can’t be choosy so I’ll work for anyone who’s willing to hire me.”
What’s your greatest weakness? “The first time I got drunk I was 16. It was at a friend’s house party. My friend Pamela and I bought a bottle of Georgi vodka to drink. Yea I’m talking about the vodka of choice for homeless people that you see advertisements for on the back of buses. So my friend and I buy this bottle, bring it to our friend’s house, and proceed to finish the entire thing. When I was in high school, I was lucky I weighed 100 pounds and I decided to spend my first real drinking experience on a half bottle of cheap vodka. As you can imagine, it did not end well. I remember leaving the kitchen while jumping on my friend’s back. The next minute, it was morning and I was lying on the floor, in pajamas, with throw up in my hair. I do not remember anything from that night. March of this year, I went to a wedding. It was on a Sunday so I drove my car to the wedding because I had orientation for a job early the next morning in the city and I didn’t want to get home late. I was all set to be extremely responsible. Well the reception started and all my friends were taking shots and I felt left out. The night ended with my friend driving my car and me puking at least three times in his bathroom. Naturally, I didn’t make it to the orientation the next morning. So what I’m trying to say is that my greatest weakness would be that after 13 years of drinking regularly I still do not have a full grasp on my limit. But I have recognized that vodka is just not for me and that I really shouldn’t mix drinks, so I’m learning.”
How well do you handle pressure and stressful situations? “I deal. I may have a few panic attacks along the way but if you provide me with some wine, and possibly some Klonopins, I should be OK.”
Where do you see yourself in five years? “Oh my God! Why would you ask that? I just told you I have panic attacks! Now I’m slowly doing math in my head and, hold on give me a second…in five years…I’ll be…34! Thanks for reminding me of that! Is the AC on in here? It’s really hot in here, no? Oh boy, five years. 34-years-old. I hope I’m married, or at least in a long-term committed relationship. Dear God, please don’t let that relationship be with a cat. Oh God, definitely not a cat. If it HAS to be a non-human companion, at least be a dog. Um, wow! Five years from now. I don’t know man. I like to live in the moment. Yea! That’s it. I’m a care free individual who lives in the moment and doesn’t worry about the future. I like to focus on the task at hand. How could I get any important deadlines finished if I’m worrying about the next five years? So, um, great question. What’s the next one?”
What is your desired salary? “You’re seriously asking me that? You do realize that’s a ridiculous question that all HR people should throw away forever, right? You’re not fooling me. I know you know how much you’re going to pay me. Now it’s just my job to state an amount that’s within that range. If I go too low, you’re either going to think I don’t value myself enough or you’re gonna pay me that instead of the original higher amount. If I go too high, you’re going to think I’m insane for actually thinking I’m worth that much and immediately tell me to get out of your office. But since you’re asking, my desired salary is one million dollars. Go big or go home!”
Do you have any questions for us? “Actually I do. How much does this job pay and how many vacation days do I get?”
Note to anyone who wants to complain about lazy, ungrateful young workers these days and/or future employers: This entire post is completely ridiculous, and terribly over-exaggerated. I am actually an extremely dedicated worker, with perfect written and oral communication skills, looking for a company where I can truly grow.