RE: interviews and ethics

Subject: RE: interviews and ethics
From: David Castro <thetechwriter -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L Mailing List <TECHWR-L -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 26 Aug 2003 03:31:02 -0700 (PDT)

Chuck Martin wrote:

> One of the important things I look for in a job is happiness. Happiness is
> more than compensation. Happiness includes enjoying the work, being
> respected for my skills, and working with equally competent people, both on
> my team and on other teams. I generally woudl select a (somewhat) lower
> compensation on an otherwise great job than higher pay where I'm miserable.

I am with you 100%. I am going on an interview today, after being laid off (for
the second time in my career) on the 8th. I *love* interviews! Where else can
you talk about yourself and your work to someone for an hour or more and
actually have them be interested in what you're talking about? I talk to my
wife for more than about 60 seconds on something I've done in some
documentation, and her eyes glaze over. <Sigh>

So I'm going on an interview today. I've been told in previous interviews that
I am refreshingly honest when I interview. And I think that's good for me, but
sad for those who aren't so honest. I look at an interview as two people trying
to figure out if the applicant is a good match for a position. That requires
that an applicant provide an honest picture of him/herself. If I provide
inaccurate information about myself, and then get the job, what's the
likelihood that I'm going to enjoy my work? I'd say it's significantly less.

Not that I'm saying that we shouldn't stress that we can learn a particular
technology. For example, the job I'm interviewing for today will require some
XML knowledge. I have worked with XML a little bit in working with JavaServer
Pages and Jakarta Struts, but that's about it. But I know that I can learn the
technology pretty quickly, and I'll say as much. But I won't say that I already
know it.

I'm so honest in my interviews that I actually take performance reviews from
previous employers with me to show what other managers have thought of me. When
I'm asked about my weaknesses, I tell them (and show them in the reviews!), but
I also tell them how I deal with those weaknesses. So, they can tell that I'm
telling them the truth, and not giving some trite answer about being too much
of a perfectionist.

One last thing that should be either an encouragement or a warning (depending
on who you are!): the person who will be interviewing me recognized my name.
When we went over where she could know me from, we determined it must have been
from this list (either that, or my WinWriters presentations last year...I was
unclear as to which she meant). So, everybody mind your P's and Q's, because
you never know when your posts here could come back to help or haunt you! :-)

-David Castro

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