May 14, 2017 0 Comments Thoughts and Feelings Working in Alberta

Job Interviews- Only a Formality

Interviews nowadays are often just a brief formality. Employers have met thousands of people over the years and have the experience to quickly tell what kind of person you are within minutes. In fact you develop that sixth sense in dating after a while as well- to quickly tell what kind of person someone generally is. Generally a logical person will only tell you what you want to hear as well, as if you want a job or employee, you don’t say things or act in a way to deter the person in front of you. In a way it’s a game of poker.

In a way it’s like a date. After you met enough women you can quickly tell within minutes whether she’s someone who craves attention, money, and your time, someone who (usually unfit) shuns anyone wanting to better their physical health and would happily tell you her philosophy of fit and unfit people or the color of your hair, or is she more of the strong independent career-oriented type who is straight to the point.

Your employer can usually quickly tell if you’re:

  • a “soft” long term person looking to add yourself to the “family”
  • a hustler looking to just make the highest dollar and to grow rapidly (but who will work hard for it)
  • someone who is unemployed because you don’t look everyday and have a negative attitude. The type of person who is told to send a resume or call a contact, but will get to it maybe in a couple or few weeks.
  • someone who is just usually good enough to perform a given job- but not experienced enough in life to find anything better and hence would make a good long term “revenue body“, but bad candidate for growing the company
  • And etc.

In some industries the interview is just skipped altogether and they just tell you to show up and see what you can do.

In my personal experience, I’ve had 50+ job offers since the beginning of the oil crash in 2015. This year, 9 since the New Year- only 1 that I actually applied to. They usually just tell me to show up and see what I can do, or the “interview” is just a brief chat for a few minutes over the phone. Then when we meet we start casually talking about stocks, trucks, houses, or the companies I worked for in the past and how they failed. Last time it was about the company owner cheating on his wife and getting 3 of his trucks repoed and what they sold for at the auction. Sometimes it just turns into a fun chat.

While this sounds good, in other industries they don’t like to touch my type with a 10 foot pole- usually in less volatile industries (or businesses with less money) where they expect a longer term employee happy just to collect a paycheque that gradually grows a little bit over the next few years, rather than a hustler who is chasing the highest dollar and to grow. Problem employer types I’ve ran into are:

  • City trades companies, like residential and commercial electrical contractors- where they usually work 40 hours a week and that’s it, and pay rates are lower than their industrial/oilfield/pipeline counterparts. They like someone who will stay, not want more, and just make enough to pay their bills and for food on the table.
  • Many white collar professions, where there is a social expectation to gradually grow your income by x% after every year, two, or more. These are the people who like to finally see you in a BMW and/or house maybe by the time you are 30-40. Then when you get even older, finally they’ll let you into management and offer you some profit sharing plan. In your late 40s or even 50s, finally hit the 6-figure salary benchmark and you’ve finally collected enough for your first rental property.
  • Industries requiring more “soft” skills, as I have a tendency to make a lot of vulgar jokes and have an extremely honest but blunt, to the point attitude that would not suffice for a traditional office job.
  • Close-knit workplaces where they try to make a “family” and like you to fit into the cliche. If they are stupid, then they want you to be stupid too to mold yourself into the group.
  • Places that want a body that is just experienced enough to perform a given role, so that you make the company money- but can’t find anything better. In essence, someone to enslave as he/she is afraid to lose his/her job because that means no beer and food for the family and can’t make the vehicle and mortgage payments. Someone who would beg management for mercy if about to lose his/her job. They want people just grateful to have a job. It’s like teaching your dog to do a given task(s) and as long as you let him/her shit and eat and throw him/her a bone once in a while, he/she his happy. But you can’t get the dog to teach you much aside from making you happier with a tail wag of approval.