Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Most In-Depth Interview Of My Life.

Two nights ago, I saw a posting on Craigslist for a decent-pay position at a chiropractic office near Fisherman's Wharf. {For those of you that don't know, Fasha is a chiropractor and it's been a close part of my life since I can remember. I've worked many o' summers for him and am actually currently doing online marketing for his practice as a little p/t job for the last several months. So when I saw this ad, my immediate thought was: Score!}


Yesterday, at 11:00, I trekked over to their office, complete with resume and cover letter, as requested.

For about 3 minutes, we had a quick little intro chit chat and I explained my background with chiropractic and how I thought the job would be a great fit, blah, blah, blah. They then explained to me that they were looking for someone who could work in a fast-paced environment, handle patients, and all the while be a "Big Ball of Love."

Got it. I can definitely do that, ma'am!

We then said our goodbyes, and I left.

At 12:30, they called me and asked me to come back at 2:00 for a group interview.

I showed up at 1:45. Because, you know, I'm punctual like that.

Then this other Asian girl walked in shortly after me, ready to tackle the group interview as well, I presumed. Asian rivalry at its best. Just kidding. But, not really.

So THEN, we had to do the most extensive interview ever, complete with thorough testing. They go as follows:

        1. Math Test. Okay, so the addition? No problem. Subtraction? Piece of cake. Multiplication with 4 numbers on top and 4 numbers on bottom? Uhhh...... hold on, hold on. I know I'm Asian and this should be second nature, but whaaaaat? I have to solve 5467x3426 WITHOUT a calculator? That's just nonsense, if you ask me. I somehow pulled a number out of my ass, but I'm definitely not confident it was correct. But since when do chiropractors require math skills to be a part of the equation? Isn't that what calculators are for?

       2. Filing Test. As in: Here are 25 names. Write them all in alphabetical order. And there are 4 different "Smiths" and 6 different "Thompsons" and there's a Seither AS WELL as a Siether. Dun dun dun. Sounds easy, but under pressure, you definitely second guess your ABC skills. I double checked my work though. Pretty sure I had that in the bag.

       3. Compare These Numbers Test. They gave us 5 minutes to quickly look over a page of numbers, like this:

12,314.66               12,341.66
33,443.33               33,443.33
56,789.22               56,799.22
44,555.99               44,556.99

And then we had to place a check mark next to the rows that did not match each other. Seemed a tad elementary at first, but after I went through it twice, then double checked my work, I realized I missed one. Maybe two. But it's okay, I'm sure it was definitely at 100% by the time the buzzer sounded. I think.

       4. Role Play. We had a few minutes to memorize a little "Patient Interaction" script. Then we had to role play with the administrator. It went a little something like this:

"Hello Mrs. Jones, please come with me. I have a 3-minute video for you to watch that will introduce you to the office. You can go ahead and press the red power button when it's over and Dr. ______ will be right with you."

So, obviously, I rocked that, because well, at one point, acting was my life, remember?

After the testing, they had me go to a back room with the Doctor while the other girl waited out front. The doc explained again that they needed someone who could direct the traffic of the office all while being a "Big Ball of Love." <---there was that term again. She wanted someone that would never be sick, would work hard, and not be on Facebook because she was, and I quote, "Tired of that shit."

I came back out to the front and they took the other girl to the back room for a talk, but then after 30 seconds, the girl came back, told me good luck, then grabbed her purse and left! I was the only one remaining. At this point, it had already been a solid hour and a half.

So THEN, they asked me to stay for an hour, manning the front desk, to see how I would interact with the patients. So I did. And an hour passes. And then an additional half hour. And I'm wondering when they're going to let me go because the poor Dizzle has been waiting out in the lobby this whole time and now it's been a good 3 hours! Finally, they said good job, they want me to come back, they'd be in touch that evening, and I left.

At this point, I felt like I couldn't get out that door fast enough. No, really, I couldn't. Because I was hobbling from the excruciating pain my new pumps were putting me in. So instead, I hobbled out the door.

Under those bandaids are disgusting blisters now. Thanks, Steve Madden.

SIDE NOTE: I realize this is an extremely long blog post. But I feel the need to document this journey for myself so I can remember it all when I'm old and decrepit!

So ANYWAY. The Dizz greeted me, blisters and all, and we hopped on a trolley for home.

And then the overwhelming tears came, smudging The Dizzle's shoulder. But why, you may be thinking? Hadn't I just scored a job on my very first interview? Isn't that great news? Yes, it is. But something just didn't sit well with me. I felt so excited about the job just that morning, but then the reality of actually sitting in that office every day, doing something that I wasn't passionate about seemed overwhelmingly depressing.

I know I don't have to have the answer for my "life calling" right this moment. And I know there are so many people in jobs that isn't their "dream job." But I can't help but feel a little lost right now. One of the biggest reasons I quit my last job to travel the world was because I wasn't passionate about it. I didn't want to settle. I didn't want to waste another day behind a computer screen, unhappy. So I did something about it and it was the best decision I've ever made! So I feel like I don't want to just throw myself back into the "norm" of a random office job just because society says so. I at least want to be excited about going back to work.

I don't know about you, but I don't think leaving an interview and then immediately crying says "excitement" about the job.

Needless to say, I think it was a great experience for me. I'm glad I was able to get my feet wet and remember what it's like to interview and also remember to listen to my gut. Life is what we make it and we have infinite possibilities. And I fully intend on exploring those possibilities to the fullest.

So now, if you'll excuse me, I have to make a phone call and thank them for the opportunity, but I think I'll pass.


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  1. Whoa Mish. That sounded like an intense day. Girl, find something that excites you... maybe work for a traveling company or magazine? Anything to do with travel. You have the gift of writing and LOVE traveling... maybe combine the combo :) who knows... or be a stewardess hahaha...

    The right job will come along :)

  2. It sounds like its not the right job for you if you havent started yet and you are already not excited about it. Thanks for sharing this, I thought it was incredible funny. I just hope I never have an interview like this!

  3. Wow that's a weird interview! And girl I made a post just yesterday about how I'm going to pursue my passion instead. WOHOOO go for it!

  4. More power to you sista for sticking with your gut, because it will always be right. There is definitely something out there for you that will be the perfect fit!

  5. Have you ever thought about teaching English abroad? My boyfriend and I taught in Korea last year and are currently teaching in Chile. We definitely are not ready to live in the states again just yet so I can imagine how you feel!

  6. Wow that's a crazy interview process! Kudos to you for doing what's best for you! :)

  7. Ugh. Just reading this stressed me out. I've had interviews like that and they are the worst! Hang in there, you'll get something that is a good fit soon!

  8. That is a intense interview and I agree with you. Do what makes you happy!

  9. I feel the same way, except I first have to climb out of my overwhelming student debt before I can really, truly, explore passions. I just came off of a really depressing 4 months of unemployment and I can say I've had several interviews like that one, and a few more than were even more intense (including one that made me come back on 3 separate days, speak to numerous people, take tests, do trial runs, and spend about 6 hours on each which I then did NOT get the job).

    You'll find something you love. I've discovered that a little hard work in pursuit of something specific helps. I was stuck doing soul crushing admin work for an insurance marketing company when I said ENOUGH! and started working hard on my graphic design. Now I'm a graphic designer. Still not my 'passion' but much better than the admin work was.

  10. That person who interviewed you sounds like a psycho. They're "tired of that shit" and want you to be a "big ball of love"? What??? I think you dodged a bullet by turning it down.

    It's also a big warning sign when they want someone who will "never get sick". I once practically ran out of a job interview when the guy said he wanted someone who would "basically live in the office". Um, no thanks, sir.

  11. Oh honey, I am so proud of you! I have been unemployed going on 6 months now and have so far refused to apply for any receptionist/office manager/soul sucking office jobs. It's so hard not just to take the easy thing out of fear, but I believe we'll find something better!!


  12. I really appreciated this post because I thought those kind of interviews were only reserved for me! I had this excruciating test given to me, out of the blue, after a two hour interview with six different people. The test was to measure how detail oriented I was for a biotech job and so they gave me two legal documents and had me proofread each one. But they both looked exactly the same to me. I ended up picking up my phone and tuning into Facebook instead...

    I'll be moving to another state this Fall and plan to search for jobs once I get there. Oh I'll definitely plan to document the process! Visit me at My Honey Studies Money


  13. I don't think I would want to work there! Yikes!!

  14. Just reading this post made me stressed about this job... Alas I am currently in a soul sucking office job. My interview? Total length probably ten minutes if that.

  15. Dang, that's SUPER intense!! I totally understand about not havinga good feeling afterwards and if you're in tears afterwards, I don't recommend it! lol Best of luck to you though as you figure it out and continue your job search!

  16. This made me cry. It's all about being happy and if something doesn't make you happy, it usually isn't worth it! So proud of you!

  17. I'm thinking the other girl left so quickly after the second use of "big ball of love." What a bizarre interview! I'm glad you're not settling for something that would likely suck the life out of you.

  18. OMG Michelle. I just recently did the same exact thing. I went for this job for one day. It was fucking terrible!! I got home after like a half day of work, was in a super bitch mood and cried. I was like I can never go back there. I cannot do it. I will not! And I thanked them and told them that it would not be a good fit for either of us. It feels good to know you can get it if you need a job out of desperation, but it also feels great that you don't have to settle. I'm proud of us :) Love you!!

  19. It is kind of depressing sitting day after day in an office doing a job you aren't passionate about. I do it. If you are not at the point in your life where you are accepting of it and not willing to settle. DON'T!! What's up with the big ball of love reference? Weird.

  20. That sounds like a horrible place to work if that's the INTERVIEW. Sheesh! Good for you for going with your gut!

    I know you haven't figured out what you want to do yet, so maybe look for something part-time so you can figure out what it is you DO want to do? I've heard that Starbucks has health insurance even at part-time (I'm not 100% on this though), so something like that might be a nice temporary job while you keep your options open.

    You seem to enjoy being around people and going on adventures, so something in tourism, perhaps? Travel agent? Flight attendant? I dunno, just throwing out ideas!

  21. Wow that's depressing.

    I'm in a job that I'm not passionate about because, hey- it pays the bills! And I got 2 mouths to feed (well, 3 including my own).

    Sometimes we just have to do what we gotta do to make it work. I love where I work but finance is not something I'm passionate about. Not saying that you should take the job because crying after the interview IS NOT a good sign!

    Good for you for recognizing that early on. If you end up with a "limbo" job, you should at least enjoy it, even if it's not your passion.

    I've wasted some good years working with something that pays the bills (the job before my current one was HORRIBLE! I cried almost every week). I'm still trying to pursue my passion of teaching but with a family and the annoying increase in birthdays, it's a little tough to switch gears in the midst of it all.

    I can't imagine how difficult it must be to jump into something after the amazing experience you've just had.

    Hang in there. Don't settle, but don't let good opportunities pass you by, either.

    Her Heart Proclaims ♥ eMinistry

  22. Good for you for getting out there and going for it! And I so admire you for realizing you didn't want to settle! You go girl :)

  23. I would pass too!
    I had an interview like that once. It finally got to the point where I didn't even WANT the job anymore but I STILL stayed and kept going through the process of interviewing. I wasted a whole day at that place. I was offered the job and just like you I called later that day to say thanks but no thanks. If I hated the job as I was interviewing for it there was no way I would want to go EVERY day and work there.
    You'll find something better! I know it!

  24. I would have passed too AND taken my shoes off as I walked out!

  25. Steve Madden is the devil. His shoes always give me blisters!

    Stick to your gut. Those people sound cray. I had an interview like that right out of college, it was so bizarre. They trapped me for hours, and wouldn't let me leave until I signed up to sell their pyramid scheme. I had to threaten to call the police. It was seriously the most traumatic event ever!

  26. You'll figure it out. Hang in there.

  27. i know how that feels, to be in a job that you're not passionate about. don't get me wrong, i LIKE my job but i don't LOVE it. i hope that one day i can find one that i'm actually excited to go to in the morning!

  28. Personally, that interview sounds insane. I've never heard of anyone "working" during an interview. Secondly, Mish, travel is your passion. That's obvious to me. Is there a way to do tours of San Fran or something travel related that you'd enjoy? Money matters, but happiness will always trump that in the long run.

  29. I graduate in December and I know this is going to become my life in a much to look forward to LOL. And Ithink that I have those same Steve Madden heels because I know the pain they inflict. Yet they're so pretty and professional. Sigh...I just want a job that accepts me wearing sandals everyday.

  30. The whole experience sounds horrifying and awful. I'm glad you are going with your gut!

  31. That is an insanely intense interview!!

    I totally get what you're saying about not having to find your life's calling & dream job right now but I definitely think you should still be somewhat excited about the job that you take right now. =) I know we've both had jobs that were so blah & I don't want you to suffer through that again! I'm still on my journey to find what I want to do & I'm still unemployed so we can be on a search together!! =)

  32. I think they make these interviews damn near impossible to weed out the people who really don't want to work. I feel you about finding a job your passionate about though. You just feel a little lost until the right then comes along. Good luck in finding the job that completes you!

  33. maybe you weren't excited about that job because they are a bunch of psychopaths??? you can never be sick or go on facebook? that's insane! I hear what you're saying about wanting to find your life's calling, but I think it's possible to find a 'good enough' job while you search for your calling, without having to work for a bunch of nutters. good luck :)

  34. You made a bold choice by not taking the job, but if you feel good about it, that's for the best.
    We should always listen to our guts!

    Love the bandaids btw ;)

  35. That's why I stopped teaching English! That, and it made me want to cry everyday... I'm totally with you on the finding something you're passionate about. There are way too many options these days to just settle. Especially for a smart and talented gal like yourself :)
    Keep it up, the right thing will come along.

  36. Hi Michelle!
    I'm Kari. I stumbled on your blog a few months back and I have been quite the lurker (But not in a creepy way. Promise!). I've pretty much caught up with a big portion of your blog (and felt extremely odd leaving comments on posts you did months ago which is why you never heard from me) and decided I should finally say HI! I think you are just so precious! I love your blog. I think you have such a fun brightness about you and I can't wait to get to know you better through you're blog!

    PS: You looked super cute for your interview!! Props to you for saying NO to something that doesn't feel quite right even when you have no other source of income at the moment. That takes guts, which I have come to realize you have in spades! I am sure the great opportunity you are looking for is just around the corner! :)

  37. run far far away from those people! you will find the right job!

  38. All I can say is think really hard about where you'd want to work outside/inside, by the water, in an office, and then figure out what you want to do and find a job that suits all the areas.

  39. YOU ARE JOKING. All of that on an interview?!? I can't even handle that. You'd think you were interviewing for the CIA!

    My previous job was a nightmare. I was hired on the spot, and I left feeling only marginally excited, and that was only because I could quit the even worse job I had then. Within 15 minutes of my first day, I was fighting tears and knew the job had been a mistake. I sobbed on my lunch break and called my mom and lost it. I was there for 14 months, every month worse than the last. It was terrible. So if it's not something you think you can even be content with for awhile, then don't do it. I will admit that I learned so much about learning to thrive in a bad situation, but it is not a time in my life I would ever want to revisit. My awful job colored my whole life and just made me an unhappy person. My current one is a night and day difference. I'm not passionate about it and I absolutely do not want to do it forever, but I'm content. It's a good stepping stone and will look great on a resume. The bottom line is that it just takes time. It's nearly impossible to land your dream job in your 20s, but every thing you do is a stepping stone and will eventually help you find your way. I'm working in an office, and I HATE the office environment as much as you do, but it pays the bills and helps me survive while I plan a strategy to do something I love. Just know that you aren't alone. I struggle every day trying to figure out how to do what I love. Don't feel bad if don't find a job you love yet. It's all a process.

  40. If that´s the physical response your body gave you, then you definitely did the right thing and declining!
    If it had been dream job you´d been offered, you should´ve been dancing and perhaps jumping up and down of joy, not crying! I hope you find the kind of work you can feel passionate about!:-)

  41. Don't get sucked into a job you don't want... not accepting was the best thing you've done for yourself! Besides traveling the world with that handsome man candy of yours.

  42. Oh wow. I'm so glad you didn't settle for a job you aren't even excited about!

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  44. You go girl! Two years ago I quit my teaching job of 4 years and moved across the country and 26 saying "I dont want to be a teacher anymore!" The year that followed I longed to be in a classroom, and I am back teaching again. But will I retire a teacher? Hell no. I got 5 more years in me, then its off to be a photographer, move to a foreign land, marry a rich Prince, own a restaurant and moonlight as a journalist. ;) I tell my 17 year old students they dont need to decide what they are doing or settle with one idea for the rest of their lives, because I'm living proof that its totally ok!! So glad you didnt settle, go find 5 careers and have fun with it! Life is too short to hate your job :)

    -Elizabeth Kathryn



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