I am still not sure if the event I am going to describe was only extremely bizarre or outright violent. Namely, more than a decade ago I was attending a workshop, held by a firm that got funds from the state to help the unemployed get a job. Again, I was not looking for one, but as the course was in my neighbourhood and one lesson particularly interested me, I decided to join. They asked for our CVs. I adapted it a bit so they would treat me like the other jobseekers.
There were several lectures on planning and writing appeals, which I found interesting and useful. At the end of the course, the woman lecturing most of the time gave us a list of companies that needed new people and we had to mark the one that we wanted to work for.
I marked a regional TV station. The woman said that one of her friends is the director and that I will be find a job there, for sure. She would mail me the date when I had the interview. OK. The first thing that came to my mind – Oh, you get paid by the state to find staff for your best friends. I sensed something didn’t smell right.
Nevertheless, I decided to have this job interview. The letter said I should bring my CV. This time I brought a complete, unabridged version, but with bolded tasks that I thought would come in handy for a TV station.
I wait at the reception area of the TV station. I wait some more. And… I wait some more. When I decide to have a glass of water, a fat guy came and asked me if I am waiting for him. He seemed sick of everything, as if he was only doing a favour to his friend.
He invited me to his office. The office was a dark place. No posters of successful TV shows, no family photos on the desk, nothing. Actually, his black desk was completely empty.
He introduced me to the work that a TV station does and asked me if I have had any experience in the media. I told him that I was writing articles, columns, translating movies from English and Spanish and that I had just written a script for a movie. I told him there would be no problem for me to write news for his TV. I mentioned that I was also good at leading teams.
He wants to see my CV. I give him the sheets and wait for him to read them.
– Come on, you’re not serious.
He raises his voice, rapidly going through my former jobs and projects.
– Are you kidding me? No, really. Are you serious? I can’t believe you dare to show up here.
– Excuse me. I don’t understand. Mrs. Soandso said you needed people to work for you. That is why I am here.
– That is true, but I need someone to wind the videotapes. This looks like you want MY job in a couple of years. You have it all and … This is just too much.
– I don’t understand. What profile are you looking for?
– Not someone that would take my job, for sure. Please, leave. If I accept you in the team, I will be jobless soon.
– Oh okay.
I stand up and leave. Stunned, puzzled and screaming – Oh my God, what has just happened – inside.
In the end, he was shouting at me and I could not watch him being knocked for six anymore. His fat torso was shaking in despair and shock. I saw terror in his eyes and sweat all over his face.
No wonder this TV does not exist anymore. Maybe someone following me was cannier and succeeded to make him jobless. This, of course, was never my intention, but indeed my first experience of a boss that does not deserve to be one.
A lesson learned – Always adapt your CV by eliminating everything that would threaten someone reading it.
Eventually you find out that you will have more chances if you hand in an empty sheet of paper, containing only your name, address and phone number. Don’t put in more effort. With such people it is futile anyway.