July 18, 2017

"Here’s something I do: If you’re in the process of interviewing with us..."

"... I’ll text you about something at 9 p.m. or 11 a.m. on a Sunday just to see how fast you’ll respond."

86 comments:

Henry said...

I give her credit for doing it as part of the interview process. Seasoned professionals will take note.

Gahrie said...

Now this is something that needs to be covered by the 14th Amendment!

(I kid, I kid)

I could never function in that environment. When i am at work, my time belongs to my boss. When I am at home, my time belongs to me.

And I don't even own a cellphone, so no texts.

TreeJoe said...

I recently had this with my boss. I'm at a new job, big challenge ahead of us turning around the company - so bear that in mind.

I had vacation July 5th-7th. I wound up spending about 4 hours a day on phone calls. On Friday at 6pm, he called me when I was walking out to the beach with my family.

He heard from me that I needed to own this time, and he asked me to manage his expectations on my availability.

Michael K said...

When I was a fourth year surgery resident, I took over the service that my future partner had run the last three months of his residency. He was a workaholic (I managed to be his partner for 14 years before it wore me out) and his two interns and junior resident were so overworked they were catatonic.

I gave them the first weekend off. I told them I could do all they had been doing in less time and they needed the rest.

Young doctors, especially surgeons, used to brag about how hard they worked. The more prestigious the institution, the more time they wasted.

This sort of stuff is ego material but usually not productive of anything else.

Dave from Minnesota said...

I used to date a gal who was always on call for clients. Web based work. Many clients in different time zones, especially west coast or Asia. We'd go out and she would be on her phone most of the time. I always made sure we were someplace with TVs and that I would be facing at least one TV so I had something to do while out on dates.

I wasn't too broken up when things didn't work out. She makes $125,000 a year but can never keep a boyfriend. She always talked about wanting kids but now she is 40 years old and still single. But hey, she's got a great career going.

Leon said...

It is a sports internet website by the looks of it so employees may not have "normal" hours.

Professional lady said...

I've been a practicing attorney for close to 30 years. I've managed to keep my sanity by keeping my work life and my professional life as separate as I could. I know I could have made more money if I had been a workaholic, but we have enough. Texting employees or potential employees on Sunday for no real reason is really reprehensible. That being said, I've never had a problem with being contacted at any time when it was really necessary.

Freedom89 said...

If text comes on Sunday morning:

1. Text back late Sunday indicating delay was due to being in church.

2. Sue for religious discrimination if not hired.

Dave from Minnesota said...

Sometimes there is a tradeoff. I know a guy who is a CPA. Runs his own office. Always on call for clients, sometimes works very long hours.

The tradeoff is that unless its quarter or year-end, he can just get up and take off at any time. Take an impromptu 4 day vacation. If a client needs to contact him, the business can be conducted via phone. I had a boss one time who was like that. Either she worked until 1 AM, or would just take off work for a few days.

rhhardin said...

I'd pass. I always worked 24/7 no holidays or vacations. But it has to be a play for pay job.

Also working from home helps.

rhhardin said...

I'd send an email to my boss sometime in the afternoon saying "McDonalds time" meaning I'd be gone for two hours.

Any other time a discussion would find both ends present.

rhhardin said...

My boss also had a play for pay job.

Etienne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ignorance is Bliss said...

I don't have a problem with the off-hours text if:

It is rare enough, maybe once or twice a week
It is something I can answer off the top of my head, not requiring hours of research
It is truly a pressing issue. Either a customer or coworker is blocked by not having this information.

Unknown said...

Maybe Trump should be interviewing for a new job because:

In every previous new administration, one big legislation got passed by August in their first year: Reagan tax cuts, Clinton budget, Bush tax cuts, Obama stimulus.

Trump? No, nope, niet, nada

Reality-based facts are a bummer to deal with.

Paraphrasing, "There is going to be so much winning, you're going to ask me to stop", Trump said.

Yep, time for an interview.

Lewis Wetzel said...

No matter what Trump had or had not doe, "Unknown" would have made this comment:
"Yep, time for an interview."
So "Unknown"'s comments are like random noise. They aren't really the result of anything like a thought process. They are, as Trilling once said of conservative thought, not ideas but irritable mental gestures.

Big Mike said...

I expect CEOs to be working whenever they aren't sleeping. But they are well compensated for it. Staff and regular employees not so much.

Qwinn said...

Unknown,

Any opinion on the Obama admin failing to pass a budget for 7 years? You know, the one single job that congress is required by the constitution to perform?

Of course, without a budget, that "stimulus" you're crowing about rolled over into the spending of the next 7 years, massively inflating spending and deficits without any legislation!

Yeah, be proud of Obama's accomplishments. Idiot.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

When my husband worked at Amazon, he was rebuked in his yearly review for "unresponsiveness." The one and only time he was "unresponsive" was failing to answer his work phone graveside at Arlington when he was burying his father.

They think they own you, and they do.

hombre said...

Presumably another godless Democrat, texting people in church expecting a response.

stever said...

I hear noise -- random noise

Matthew Sablan said...

These people are interviewing me; at 9 PM, I'm either with people I want to talk to, playing games or getting ready for bed. Only the second of those will I interrupt for a random text from someone who, frankly, is not yet owed any of my time and effort. It can wait for the morning. If I get the message in the morning on a Sunday, I'm either inside if the weather is bad, or outside and about. If I'm outside, my phone is either being used as a map or is in my backpack in case of emergency.

Neither situation will make me respond.

If my family or work texts me, then I'll answer. But people I'm interviewing for?

I'll get back to them in a reasonable amount of time.

buwaya said...

This is correct.
In many, many fields, we are all 24x7 now, because the functions of the business have expanded to 24x7.

Its not that we work for the boss, we have obligations re our social role in the enterprise, which transcends the leadership and their particular concerns. What we do should go on as long as our duties exist, whether or not there are instructions from our leadership, or whether there is a leadership structure at all.

buwaya said...

"I had vacation July 5th-7th. I wound up spending about 4 hours a day on phone calls. On Friday at 6pm, he called me when I was walking out to the beach with my family. "

Been there, done that.

MaxedOutMama said...

What a jerk. That's all I can think and that's the only way I can react. This is ridiculous and unrevealing of an employee's potential - what if a person goes to bed early, and gets up at 5 AM to work out?

I will note in passing that all the BS about women managers being more understanding about work/life balance is rebutted by this article.

stever said...

I once was being graded in a review on the 1-9 scale in various categories. Divided into thirds, 1-3 low, 4-6 acceptable, 7-9 exceeds expectations. On days off due ti illness I got a 6. I said "I've never taken any time off for illness, So he gave me a 7.

Bill Peschel said...

To be fair, he did expect a reply within three hours, so you could be in church, get out, and get back to work, dammit!

He would have had a hard time getting to me, however. No cellphone (actually we do carry one for emergencies on the road, but he isn't one so he'd never know).

If anyone objection, I would wish that I could say, "If I was pocketing this company's profits, I'd work 24/7 like you. Since I don't, I won't." But I would be a weasel and probably submit.

Back in the day, I had a horrible boss who would call me on the phone at home. It got so bad that after I quit, I still had a stress reaction every time the phone would ring. Took months to get over that.

As for Unknown's attempt to hijack the thread, just a note: You've abused the social etiquette one too many times. I ignore your comments now. Pass right over them, no matter what. I won't even bring this up again. Done.

CStanley said...

One way to look at it is that she's doing people a favor by displaying this behavior upfront and allowing people to decline consideration for the job by waiting until Monday morning to respond.

buwaya said...

"It is truly a pressing issue. Either a customer or coworker is blocked by not having this information."

This happens more and more. Systems of all sorts get more complex, the people get more specialized, it is increasingly the case that there is just one, or a very few people who know enough about a given thing (and don't get me started on the futility of documentation).

More and more bottlenecks, which are people.

sean said...

It depends on how much the job pays, compared to other available opportunities. Associates at Wachtell Lipton work a lot more than associates at most other firms, and they get paid more. All of them knew what they were signing up for. So it's very wrong for the writer to say that no one gets paid enough to endure that treatment.

I congratulate this employer for making the expectations plain upfront. What sucks is to have taken a job at the median salary for your skill set and find expectations much higher than the median. Then you are being exploited.

Kevin said...

Text is a piece of cake. Everyone has their phone with them at all times; text comes in, you respond to it. Email, on the other hand, that's a bitch. I would definitely fail the email test. If I had to actually deal with all the emails I get all weekend long, in real time, there wouldn't be a weekend, ever. I get work emails on my phone too, but I don't actually check it unless I'm expecting something. Every 5 minutes or so it says, Email Received, Email Received, on and on. On weekdays it's more like every 2 minutes.

CStanley said...

...failing to answer his work phone graveside at Arlington when he was burying his father.

My dad passed away at a young age when I was still in my mid twenties. When I called my boss to let her know that I wouldn't be in the next day because I needed to fly home, she started questioning how many days it would be until the funeral to see if I could work in the interim because she had been planning to go out of town herself. I was so taken aback that I was trembling and I think hung up without speaking but pulled myself together and spent a couple of hours tracking down a relief veterinarian who could cover and then called my boss back to put her in touch with the person who could fill in. As soon as I got back I quickly found a new job and tendered my resignation.

Feste said...

"If you’re in the process of interviewing with us, I’ll text you about something at 9 p.m. or 11 a.m. on a Sunday"

Texting like this is what Harriet Tubman did to recruit workers for the railroad.

Her I.Q. wasn’t high enough to hire on with the presidential Fillmore & Co., she couldn’t read the bounty posters with her own name on them, her painful bone spurs and cracked skull prevented her from walking through those scary woods at night, so Harriet texted and tweeted for help.

She could never pass an interview like this. Her mind was elsewhere.

I'd vote for this woman.

Follow her as Commander in Chief.

There’s just something about @RealHarriet that’s a little different.

Wilbur said...

7/18/17, 11:44 AM

Freedom89 said...
If text comes on Sunday morning:

1. Text back late Sunday indicating delay was due to being in church.

2. Sue for religious discrimination if not hired.
________________________________________________________________________

Just so long as you really were in church. Because if you sue, they're gonna' find out. And if you weren't, nasty consequences will ensue.

Balfegor said...

I think a lot of the mid-vacation / mid-weekend business call phenomenon is driven by a failure to engage in appropriate continuity planning. A well-run project ought to be able to continue just fine even if one team member falls ill, or gets run over by a car, or has to go on maternity leave or something. Partly that's a function of lean staffing, but professionals today thrive on the illusion of irreplaceability, so mission critical information gets locked up in the head of one person or another, even when there's no reason for it to be that way. And you end up with a project that falls apart as soon as someone becomes unavailable.

Anyhow. It's frustrating when someone won't voluntarily share data with you because they don't want to become redundant.

Terry Vance said...

I wonder if you get points if you respond instantly with "Leave me the * alone"?

stlcdr said...

"Everyone has their phone with them at all times; text comes in, you respond to it."

That's a negative. For a lot of people, maybe, but it's by no means a given.

"Email, on the other hand, that's a bitch. "

Again, no. Email is a better medium if you expect a conitive response. You can answer it on your own time, giving it your full attention, because you are retrieving the mail on your own schedule.

Same with people who make phone calls and don't leave a message or just 'call me back'. It isn't about personal time, it's about effective communication. We have these wonderful tools to potentially make us more efficient in the tasks that we do, yet are clueless on how to use them.

Balfegor said...

And all that said, here's a link to the famous incident when Urquhart of Quinn Emanuel let everyone know that his motto is CHECK YOU EMAILS OFTEN (sic).

traditionalguy said...

This is not about NYC at all. It is about the Global businesses of the Global Corporations seeing the world as boundary free, ergo time zone free and local cultural festival day free...and if you do not fit in they know hundreds of educated people from their Indian, African, European and South American provinces that will take the work.

In a nut shell, that is why Trump is popular.

AlbertAnonymous said...

I think its brilliant! If the boss expects people in this internet 24/7 sports business to be (at least) reachable on the weekend, this is a good test. Interviews are two way tryouts.

I would think most people interviewing for a job would be trying to put their best foot forward, show interest and desire for the work, and would respond in a reasonable time. I know I would. Whether I decided to take the job (if offered) or not, I would respond because I'd be trying to show my best self.

If the interviewee doesn't want to be at the boss's beck and call, better to find that out before you make the hire. The job's not for everyone. Those here who have said they wouldn't like this have made the case for why this boss does this.

Nothing worse than hiring someone and finding out they are NOT as available as you need.

Breezy said...

Why the underhanded test? Why not just ask the person what their availability is, generally, off hours, during the interview? If the manager needs the responsiveness, how about simply discussing that as an expectation of the job?

Jeesh.

Balfegor said...

Re: traditionalguy:

This is not about NYC at all. It is about the Global businesses of the Global Corporations seeing the world as boundary free, ergo time zone free and local cultural festival day free...and if you do not fit in they know hundreds of educated people from their Indian, African, European and South American provinces that will take the work

No, those Europeans are always going on holiday.

mockturtle said...

In my first career I was committed to my company. In my second, to my clients. I never minded being contacted on my off-time regarding either. Their concerns were my concerns even on the weekend. But this is just me and I don't expect others to be the same nor should they be.

Jess said...

It's the interview process. For her, it gives her an insight into the work habits of a potential employee. To the potential employee, it gives them an insight into what they might expect. Otherwise, a win-win for both.

Gabriel said...

College students do this to their instructors, and evidently assume that their instructors are on call 24/7--and it will come up in student evaluations.

exiledonmainstreet said...

hombre said...
Presumably another godless Democrat, texting people in church expecting a response."

That's what I thought.

What if she texted an observant Orthodox Jew on the Sabbath and didn't get a response until after sundown on Saturday? Would she text a Muslim on Friday evening?

Michael K said...

"one big legislation got passed by August in their first year:"

Unknown, they have this thing called "Congress" that passes legislation.

Too bad they don't teach Civics in school anymore.

Unknown knows how to recycle but that Constitution thing is almost 100 years old or something.

Even Joe Biden doesn't know what Article I says. Maybe it's a leftist thing. Or senility. How old are you Unknown?

Rit said...

I wouldn't text her back. I'd wait till 3am and call her back. And I'd keep calling until she answered her phone. And on Monday I'd do the same thing again. And Tuesday too. Then, I might even break out my old PC that has a good old fashion modem in it and setup a robo-dialer to call her at random intervals between midnight and 5am every day of the week, with special emphasis on the weekends.

buwaya said...

"No, those Europeans are always going on holiday.'

Not the Eastern Europeans. There is tech support call center work out there in Poland, Hungary, etc.

Michael K said...

I should add that, once I was in practice for myself, I worked every Christmas for years and many weekends I would not see my family more than a few hours.

Doctors, including surgeons, are no longer self-employed. As a result, shift style practice patterns are common and the work ethic that kept me in the hospital sometimes for 40 hours straight, is gone.

Unknown said...

"Text is a piece of cake. Everyone has their phone with them at all times; text comes in, you respond to it. "

Nope, I don't carry my cell phone everywhere I go, I usually leave it in the car when I'm out or on the office desk when I'm at work. I refuse to take it with me if I go to lunch. I pretty much avoid texting because I think it's silly.

buwaya said...

"But this is just me and I don't expect others to be the same nor should they be."

I think old Marcus Aurelius expected his legates and procurators and prefects and centurions to at least try to be like him.

Freeman Hunt said...

The CEO is wasting time sending these texts. A person wanting a job is very likely to text right back. That provides no information about how the person will treat texts after having been hired.

Dave from Minnesota said...

Is it real, or a rightwing parody of the Washington Post:

"After Minneapolis officer in police shooting is named, Somali community braces for backlash"

Virgil Hilts said...

Agree with Sean. It depends on how much the job pays, compared to other available opportunities.
If you're getting paid less than $100k then this type of responsiveness is an unreasonable demand. If you are billing your clients $500+ per hour, they kind of expect you to always have your cell phone and to respond within a couple of hours even on weekends.
I doubt that the people I work with experience more than 5-6 waking hours during the week where they have not checked emails.

Freeman Hunt said...

I know an endocrinologist who is directly reachable by patients any time, any day, even on vacation. He treats children with Type 1 diabetes, so emergencies come up often. Obviously, the guy's a saint. I would hate getting texts amd calls at all hours.

David said...

The woman probably is an asshole.

However, I do not agree with this from the article: Nobody gets paid enough to respond to work-related texts or emails after hours, especially if a manager feels responding to his texts will be proof of his employees’ loyalty.

Not true with high level services businesses. (Manufacturing is a service business with products these days.) The ultimate boss is not the "manager." It's the customer or the client. If you are working in a highly competitive field with correspondingly high customer expectations, there are no "after hours." Very limited exceptions apply. You may have to manage those expectations, and hope to work with people and clients who are judicious in their demands. But 24/7 is a way of life in some jobs. Don't like 24/7? Don't take those jobs.

David said...

"The CEO is wasting time sending these texts. A person wanting a job is very likely to text right back. That provides no information about how the person will treat texts after having been hired."

True. It also proves only that a person can read and respond to a text, not that they have any skill for solving the problem presented to them. The response is not the solution. The quality of the response is.

buwaya said...

"It also proves only that a person can read and respond to a text, not that they have any skill for solving the problem presented to them."

When it comes down to cases, you want both. You want the problem fixed, and promptly.
When a system is operating thin, not that it should be, but these days they usually are, this question of response becomes critical.

bagoh20 said...

Job interviews work both ways, and you choose your boss. Choose what you want.

Scott said...

I was fired from my job last month, at 95 days of employment. My boss came to my desk. She said she wanted to meet me in the HR director's office. We went there. The HR guy said, "We're letting you go because we don't think you're a good fit." I had nothing to say, because I was completely blindsided -- I thought I was doing well and had gotten no negative feedback at all from my boss. Ten minutes later, I was in the parking lot with my stuff in a paper bag.

Today was my phone interview with the state's unemployment claims examiner. I told him exactly what was related in the previous paragraph. He said that he was calling the HR guy to get their side of the story, and would then make a determination as to whether or not I was entitled to benefits now, benefits after 8 weeks of unemployment, or no benefits at all.

Some thoughts:

1. The company, which develops and markets software applications, has a "no dress code" policy. Some mid-level managers would show up in Hawaiian shirts, shorts, and flip-flops. One guy wore a kilt. You get the idea. At the same time, they seemed like a very conformist and uptight clique composed of a lot of Princeton grads. I think the former was an imposed cultural affect that was intended to mask the latter.

2. In my opinion, my boss was something of a misandrist. She had real resentments in dealing with men. She once complained to me that her product line carried a third of the company's top line revenue; and yet a male colleague with an old obsolescent product with a tenth of her sales made $50,000 more than she did. (I have no idea how she could know what his salary was, but she related this to me like it was the Gospel truth.) Her resentment may have been justified, but in hearing her frustration, I also got the feeling that she thought all men were lesser creatures who were out to get her. And ultimately, I think my unfortunate possession of the wrong gender made it difficult for her to wrap her mind around managing me.

3. I have a preliminary job interview Thursday for a contract-to-hire position at a big New York bank. Although the rate is on the very low end of acceptable, I would be reporting to a manager who is male. I'm very happy about that, and I hope they hire me. It would be so nice to work for a manager who isn't afraid to give me feedback.

4. It seems that in so many jobs, it's not just about doing the work, it's about joining the club. I've never been on the inside of anything except my AA home group. I'm hoping and praying to find someplace where I am only judged by the quality of my work and my productivity. But I don't think such a place exists.

mccullough said...

Scott, best of luck

Michael K said...

I know an endocrinologist who is directly reachable by patients any time, any day, even on vacation.

I'll bet a nickel that doc is in private, non-group practice. That is the way it used to be and is not much these days.

My son developed type I at age 27. He took a job physical and had a blood sugar of 700. The endocrinologist in an HMO the fire department used gave him a video tape for his initial diet training.

I paid for him to go to a friend endocrinologist's dietitian.

Eventually, he was able to get to a large group practice and about 15 years later, he was having high serum glucose. The PA, of course it was a PA, accused him of not following his diet. The group fired him as a patient for being non-compliant.

Three days later he was in the hospital with sepsis, the real cause of his insulin resistance.

The endocrinologist saw his wife in the hospital cafeteria but never spoke to her.

Medicine has changed a lot since I was in practice.

Michael said...

I think the interview technique is both effective, necessary and just. For a couple of years in the 90s I got phone calls from my Japanese clients at 2, 3, 4 in the A.M. They could care less what time it was where I was or whether or not I was sleeping. They were at work and wanted to talk to me. So, OK. My wife would hand me the phone and I would put on my wide awake voice, yes, Hara-san, what can I do for you. We worked out of their issues over two or three years and that was the end of that. But I have clients in the UK and on the west coast so I am pretty much available all but a few hours of every night when I can be pretty sure I won't be bugged. But I can tell you it is both worth it and nice to know that people value my contribution. It could be that you don't get a text from the boss because she knows you aren't quite up to it. And then you will whine about that.

Michael said...

Scott:

Good luck with your interview on Thursday. Many a good man before you, many better men than you, have been forced to walk the plank suddenly and unexpectedly and wrongly. You will do great. Leave out the AA stuff at the interview, btw, they don't give a shit about your recovery, and you will snare the job, Worry about the money after you get on the inside and figure out how it works. If you are indispensable big NY banks will cough up for you.

JaimeRoberto said...

This is why I don't put my mobile number in the company directory. It's probably hurt my career, but there are other important things in life.

Unknown said...

Trump on passing the Buck on Trumpcare:
"The Buck doesn't stop here."
"Actually the Buck doesn't even visit here."
"Now that you mention it, what's a Buck?"

Scott said...

mccullough, thank you.

Michael, thanks also. Of course I won't mention that I go to AA meetings (33 years now). I merely referred to it to underline the point that I am not the kind of guy who joins clubs. My distaste for company politics is probably career limiting, but I'm good with that.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Dave from Minnesota,

That's not a parody. It's unclear what's happened, apart from that the First Somali-American Police Officer Ever! shot a white woman. White Lives Don't Matter, of course, so the focus is on the anticipated anti-Somali backlash. So far, though, she is the only dead person in this story. Let's hope it stays that way.

Jupiter said...

Rather than viewing this as a "What assholes some people are" item, I prefer to look at it as a "What a crock of shit job screening is" item.

Michael said...

Even the Unknown should visit the known fact that the POTUS does not make laws. The congress failed. Obamacare stays in place. Eat it.

mockturtle said...

Scott, I hope you find a job soon. What part of the country? The northeast? Here in the west the 'old boy network' is less a factor, I think, and fewer people care about where you went to school. Results are what matter. You'll be in my prayers. If you are good at what you do, you should be able to find a job or, better yet, start up your own business, consulting or whatever. Be willing to take risks. :-)

policraticus said...

If that is part of the job, if you are going to be compensated accordingly, then I don't have a problem with the strategy, per se. That is not a job I'd be interested in unless the money was extraordinarily abundant, but I've know plenty of my friends who went on vacations in their 20's and 30's with cell phones strapped to their hips, always available to the home office.

In my experience, bosses who do not respect their employee's time away from work are not very well organized and are, generally speaking, shitty people to work for. But there is a difference between being a manipulative, controlling bastard and a co-worker reaching out for needed help working a problem for a client in a different time-zone.

Michael K said...

Scott, my daughter was interviewed by Apple a total of eight or nine times and then told the job had been filled internally because the two women who would train her were pregnant. It was over 6 months. At least they were flying her to Cupertino but she didn;t get the job.

Better luck to you. Although considering Cupertino, she may have lucked out anyway. She was thinking of buying a small RV to live in.

EDH said...

Text back a picture of your junk.

PB said...

I'd like to see how that "manager" felt about 10,000 spam text messages.

Bruce Hayden said...

"No, those Europeans are always going on holiday."

My story there - I was one of 2 patent attys in the US unit of a European company. Every summer all the other attys would wish everyone happy holidays or some such, as they all headed out of town for a month or so. I had 2 weeks of annual leave, and at one point asked if I could switch to the parent so that I could get the month off every summer. No dice.

I did carry a beeper there because I was their only licensed atty west of the Mississippi (US headquarters was in Boston, but only operating plant was out west, where I was). Might get beeped a couple times a year after hours. Only real excitement was the Y2K rollover, since they had a lot of legacy stuff.

Bit later I was working for a decent sized law firm (about 200 attys at the time, bigger now). They paid for half a Blackberry, then iPhone (after they figured out how to secure them). They really did kinda expect 24/7 responsiveness. I made it a habit of responding at 2 or 3 am to emails that were sent by other attys late in the evening. I was essentially one upping the workaholic attys who were, essentially, showing off by working late every night. Could their emails have waited until the next day? Mostly, of course. But, it let them feel powerful and important, and that was good.

Sample Commenter said...

What I wonder is why somebody who thinks about work all of the time, and is working nights, weekends, and weekdays, is working for somebody else.

Sample Commenter said...

I think that founders often are at a loss to understand why employees don't work with the same energy and drive that they do.

Equipment Maintenance said...

For several years I carried a beeper that responded to problems with a system - a pharmaceutical water system - which would beep me any dang time something went wrong. Happened once on Christmas morning when I was so sick I was sleeping in a spare bedroom. I went in, though.

Scott said...

mockturtle, thanks, I'm exploring all options.

Michael K, sort of like Bloomberg, where I interviewed unsuccessfully four different times over the past 15 years. Very long multiple interview process, and quite frustrating.

Skyler said...

That's why interviews work both ways. He failed the company's side of the interview. Don't ever take a job from a jerk like that. It won't get better, only worse.

M Mott said...

You really want to be at the neck and call of a leader? Try being a staffer on a high level political campaign. I worked a governor's campaign, two Senate races and one Presidential run. These were the days before cell phones, but I had a pager. I'd keep it clipped to my pillow while sleeping lest I miss a midnight page.

Totally burned out by age 27.

Skyler said...

Scott wrote: "4. It seems that in so many jobs, it's not just about doing the work, it's about joining the club. I've never been on the inside of anything except my AA home group. I'm hoping and praying to find someplace where I am only judged by the quality of my work and my productivity. But I don't think such a place exists."

I had an interview with a medium sized company in Corpus Christi. They make automatic doors, very interesting factory.

The interview started when I arrived at 6pm, dinner with one manager at the hotel, until just enough time to get some sleep, then picked up for breakfast at 6:30 in my suit. Then all day long I spent with one manager or another until about 8pm the second day. I had to drive back home 5 hours after that interview ended. It was exhausting because there was no let up. No break time. Every minute was part of the interview.

Before I left, they asked me to write an 8 page essay describing how I would fix all the problems in their factory.

Oh, and they told me that they liked to have all the managers get together after hours to unwind, because it's important to have off-time. You know when they're trying to emphasize how important their off-time is, that means there is no off-time, especially when off-time is spent with co-workers.

Yeah, that essay didn't get written. I saw no need to present to them my plan for fixing their problems before I even got paid. They failed their interview. I called the next day to tell them I didn't want to be considered for the job anymore. My head hunter was furious.

Skyler said...

But that wasn't my worst interview. I was applying to be an engineering manager at a small company, and the hiring manager turned out to be a young man only a year out of college. That wasn't very good to start with, but then he told me that the company uses Microsoft Excel a lot and I needed to be good at it. He asked me to rank myself from 1 to 10 as to how good I was with Excel. I told him that I've used it extensively and have used quite a bit of its functionality, but there was always something new to learn. I modestly said I was only a 9. This punk's response was surprise and he acted offended. "Oh really? I'm only a 7 myself." So he's offended that on an arbitrary and vague scale that I ranked myself higher than him? On this occasion I decided then and there that I wouldn't work for him and I explained to him that he failed my interview and I thanked him for his time. I walked out immediately after that question and we didn't finish the interview.

I guess it's a good thing I work for myself now. I just don't like putting up with stupidity anymore than I have to.

Jim Nicholson said...

Board members and stock holders, take note: if your company's CEO or managers are pulling crap on prospective employees like the person described in this article is doing, you should fire them immediately. They will kill your business. And if you don't fire them, that business deserves to die.

By all means, contact me on a weekend because there's an emergency, or because it's part of my agreed-upon job responsibilities, but the behavior described here constitutes harassment. I'd file a police report if it happened to me.