Re: Interviewing for Tech Write/Contract Positions

Subject: Re: Interviewing for Tech Write/Contract Positions
From: Emmy Aricioglu <EMMY_ARICIOGLU -at- HP-ROSEVILLE-OM3 -dot- OM -dot- HP -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 3 Dec 1998 10:07:04 -0800

Item Subject: Re: why I want to Tech Write/Contract Positions

This thread is interesting and worth indulging in from time to time.
I've been working full time since 1967 in a number of different
industries and, thus, have some experience being both the
interviewee and the interviewor. Also, I should add, I
started out as a contractor for this company and now have
a full-time position.

I work for a huge company. The interview process for technical
writer position in our group is probably the fairest I have ever
encountered. Personnel does the background screening. The
candidate's interview is a day-long process. The candidate is
interviewed by the manager of our group (a one-hour session) and
also individually by four other group members (one hour each). At
the end of the day, the interview team meets for an hour and
discusses results. When all candidates have been interviewed (this
could take 2, 3 or more weeks), the group meets again to rank the
candidates. An offer is made to the highest ranker. Candidates
from outside the company compete with internal candidates.

Taking part in this process (on the interviewing end) is
enlightening. The experience is similar to being on a jury (which
I've also experienced). It's amazing how different the
perceptions of the interviewers are! Not only are job-related
biases brought out (interviewers with engineering backgrounds
vs. those with liberal arts-writing backgrounds, etc.), but also
personal biases (interviewers who had difficulty mastering a
certain skill projected that difficulty onto candidates, etc.).
Some are concerned about perceived job hopping and others are
not, etc. A certain fairness, however, applies because one
team member's biases are smoothed out by another's.

The interviewers are trying to be fair, but let's face it --
each of us can only look at others through our own skin. The
best we can do is be aware of this.

What this means to me (and this from 30+ years of experience) is
that there is a certain unfairness to the whole process of
seeking a job. OK, that's not news. But, knowing this puts
everything into perspective. For this job, I was perceived
well and got it. Next time, that may not happen. But I,
as a person, have not changed. Only the circumstances around
me have changed. And this I cannot agonize over. The fact
that this group accepted me but another one won't cannot
be the driving force of my life.

I like to think that there is more than one perfect job out
there for me and for you. I've had some pretty unpleasant life
experiences -- but I've always gotten a second chance, and even
a third chance. And this is true for you, too. I've also had
some luck (fortune, good timing, etc.), and will have some again.

I see all jobs as learning experiences. But what I'm learning
for is to have a good life -- not to have a good job. This is
the advice I mean to pass on to those of you just starting out.
I wish you good luck because I know you will get it.

emmy_aricioglu -at- hp -dot- com

From ??? -at- ??? Sun Jan 00 00:00:00 0000=

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