#AskARecruiter: The Job Search — Part II

Day II of the same

Yesterday’s Part I left you [hungry and yearning for more — right] at:
Feedback? What Feedback?
I no longer request their feedback. Why? Consider the audience; that’s what we’re taught, right? Adjust to your audience. Be it the construct of your presentation, your tone, posture, etc., whatever! The audience defines your delivery and reception.
Just a second…

Why should we receive feedback from people who have no insight into who we are, how we are, and any context that may have factored into the aforementioned? We assume, rather, expect the interview to extract this information and, (based on that premise, then) certainly the interviewers are positioned to have captured and concluded as they have. Right?

Right? After all, objective feedback is the goal and intention of this superficial process, no? And, given this, surely, the audience, well-trained in the subject matter and art of listening, interviewing, etc., will deliver on the expectation to opine intelligently, absent any concept of the context and beyond the smoke and mirrors of this staged interview, right? According to the expectations and objectives of the interview process, no doubt.

Wrong, Grasshopper!

You, Me, and Our Histories
At which point will we finally recognize subjective elements factoring in and coloring the process? This, oftentime too often, at the expense, and involuntary submission, of the candidate.

Certainly, insufficient (and sometime mistaken) inputs (given the scope of the interview experience) can derail the entire process and change the course of all efforts. And we all know that interviews are woefully superficial and judgmental little things, aren’t they? They have this power to sprinkle a lot of damage, result in a lot of disappointment and, subsequently, bury our most enthusiastic hopes. Interest, sounds like a Bully.

…who the **** are these people providing feedback?! What do they know about me to merit such consideration and how exactly did they determine what they did? I mean, this HR Generalist is taking notes on my background? I could be her Uncle or Father, for God’s sake!

*Steven, Director of Integrated Services, responsible for all ****-ups in the Development team.
*yes, obviously, name withheld due to privacy and blah blah blah…

On 4 particularly memorable occasions, where the feedback was so incorrect I think I popped a blood vessel on my nose, I received some rather irresponsible comments leaving me to ponder: a) did this person interview me?; b) was this person actually present during our discussion; and, c) did the interviewer err in their notes? Surely, this was meant for someone else? In fact, I actually once did ask:

  1. “Did you intend for this input to be for someone else because you’re not describing me?”
    On another I responded,
  2. “How did you capture this answer because I wasn’t even asked that question?”
    And then the third,
  3. “Did you actually look at my resume? You just told me I had no experience with XYZ so, unless you’re suggesting I lied on my resume and with said employer, explain to me just how you were able to determine that I have no experience in said subject matter.”
    And, the fourth:
  4. “You’re not A-type enough.”

Miraculously, on few occasions, I’ve held my tongue and reserved my comments and opinions for those padded rooms.

take a pill, Semira; or 2, as requested by the boyfriend

Further on the subject of Feedback…
Ask for their input only. That is, “What factors did you consider when arriving at your decision?”

From this, some sense of their intended objectives, (which doesn’t correlate or predict objectivity, of course), might be achieved. I won’t grade the effort.

Recruiters are Candidates Too, You Know: Seen, Been, and Heard it all before.

I was once told (and it came true) that I would “recruit myself out of a job”; I’ve placed and filled roles so fast that ….*crickets
Apparently, I “…can get a job for others like nobody’s business except yourself. But that’s not what you should be wanting, anyway!”

I once interviewed with a(nother) pompous young (self-claimed) “extraordinary Entrepreneur who could write the book on Sales” here in Vancouver. The opportunity was described as: “….essentially like being Bill Gates’ EA or Gary Vaynerchuk’s intern/Personal Assistant.

Uh, an EA? A PA? How the **** did this Recruiter interview suddenly transform into an E/PA position that I should, supposedly, be begging for?!

When Mr. Guru Entrepreneur realized I hadn’t bought into their sales pitch, the sales tactics took an immediate and complete 180-degree shift: “Yeah, well, we’re very selective and interviewing other candidates too.”

Hey! ****head*! I saw that. I saw what just happened there!
Reference Dr. Richard Claydon’s recent Definitions.

Who isn’t selective? Who doesn’t boast a “tight-knit family team environment.” Although, (wait for the article on Job Descriptions), such words footnoting job descriptions and recited repeatedly during interviews are futile and meaningless, really.

I withdrew from that opportunity the very next day.

“Thank you for considering me for the Recruiter opportunity however, after learning that you’re looking for Bill Gates’ EA or Gary Vaynerchuk’s PA, I understand that you’re not actually looking for a Recruiter and so respectfully withdraw.”

An Actual Response I Received
I’m not interested in speaking to you further about your profile. But thanks for contacting me with your interest.”

S’cuze me? You’re not interested?

say WHAT?!

I’m surprised I haven’t had a stroke or four.
Somedays I remark, tongue-in-bitten-cheek,: “I want to shoot myself.” 
On others I wish to ram my head into a wall and have visualized this, as well.

the Job Market
“You’ve got no issues getting another job. You can just walk out of here and into another.

Here it is, Folks, Here it comes…. 
In case you haven’t noticed, this isn’t 1998/9, or 2010/11, nor is it San Francisco! This is Vancouver, BC; this is one strange town unlike most other cities where many professionals (with outside-the-province tenure) have openly acknowledged never, ever experiencing what this city just does to you. And if you think I’m talking about the Dragon Boat races or the 4/20 or the bike lanes or anything so natural, think again.

“I don’t know what it is about this city, why people behave as they do, but Vancouver is one ******-up business community!”

1- Feedback? Negative.
2- Punctuality? Negative.
3- “I’ll call you when I say I’ll call you.” Negative.
4- “I’m interested in meeting you; let’s meet…..” negative, negative, negative.
5- “Let’s have coffee.” Oh FFS! How many coffees can you have?!
6- Sense of urgency? Now I know you’re really kidding me.
7- Passive-*******Aggressive Flaky? Cha, Ching. Pause-i-tive. yes.

You Will Get This Look In An Interview Or Date or Whatever, In Vancouver

Welcome to Vancouver, BC
Where the trees are green, but not your bank account. Unless, of course, you’re an Entrepreneur, (aka, Drug Dealer, aka, Ghansta’), and in this city, nearly every second person is an Entrepreneur, (aka, …..nevermind).
I swear somebody is finally going to shoot me.

Housing Market? Unrealistically ballooned and should be criminal.
Cost of Living? Unrealistic.
Salaries? Some barely over the poverty line (I said, some!) and lower than other cities across Canada that are good comparisons.

Ah, but Vancouver…there’s beaches, and breezes, and trails and the Grouse Grind. The ocean breeze is spectacular, sushi restaurants boast succulent fish pulled daily from the fresh waters, and there’s a specialty coffee shop around every corner drawing envy from and rivalling Seattle’s finest.

Ah, Vancouver. This is Why We Live Here.

Perhaps I should launch my Tourism Content Writing career after this.

The Reality

It’s not What you know, in Vancouver; It’s WHO you know.

Who, Not What, You Know
Here in Vancouver, especially, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know.

Hey, don’t believe me! You don’t need to. Who am I but a dejected candidate,
after all?

Admittedly, most of my network was/is in San Francisco where I spent the first part of my career-building years so my network in Vancouver has been a challenge to rebuild given my absence.

But, those comments come directly from the mouths of many well-knowns in Vancouver, BC., and it’s no secret. And it Works! For the right person…Because, I personally know many of those “who you know” celebrities in Vancouver, however,:

1-One of them read my email (because the message said Read) and ignored me
2-Another forgot I was looking for a new role
3-Another told me they wanted me on their team if I were available then never responded when I told them I am (Gmail Email Tracker works, you know?)
4-And where I knew 2 big players who even talked to their HR? You guessed it…nothing
5-This was the worst →theCandidateBlowJob: at the final interview stage by the founders of two independent companies (unrelated). No call before or after, or ever. No acknowledgement either.

And with one, it happened twice. ‘Cuz, apparently, it’s me. I’m the idiot.

Part III, tomorrow:
They’re Just Not that Into You

#theSIAPerspective | forever championing for the #candidate