|On July 15th, 2004, Amy Pritchard wrote from Sacramento, California.|
I sure wish you had shared your experiences about 10 years ago. I could have used it.
I was a sophomore in college at UCSB and received a very formal personal letter in the mail stating that they were impressed with my scholastic record, knew I would be looking for a summer job and inviting me to interview with their company for an intern type job to get my foot into the business world. I can't remember the name of the company now, but it was something generic, like Business Solutions of America.
Being 19, I was absolutely flattered at this unsolicited outreach based upon my impressive school record!
I called and set up the interview in NoCal where I was from. I borrowed a business suit from my Mom, borrowed my Dad's car and drove 30 miles to the interview site. It was a very strange warehouse looking place and when I finally got into the room, it looked like a large mechanic's garage with a circle of tables in the middle. There were knives all over the walls. There were about 25 of us from my age to 60, all dressed in business attire.
This guy in his mid to late twenties greeted us all, gave us notepads to take notes and began to speak. I couldn't believe the guy, all he talked about was how rich, successful, smart and savvy he was. He talked about what it took to make it in this world. I am thinking, "What the hell?"
Then the guy started berating people and throwing them out of the room. He would stop his talk and look at a guy and say, "Why aren't you taking notes? If you don't care enough to learn, my company does not want you. Get out!" Then the guy would have to leave. He threw about 4 people out, berating them as they left and at that point I was seriously scared of the public humiliation. I couldn't stop staring at the one guy who looked 60, in an ill fitted business suit and feeling so so so sorry for him.
Anyway, it finally comes out that we are there to sell knives. Give me a freaking break - all that guy's swaggering was to cover up the fact he makes money going door to door selling knives. So, anybody that left voluntarily, he would make an example of what losers they were. I was scared to death to stay and scared to death to leave. I knew it would be a scene. The only gal that was able to leave respectably was one that packed her things, marched over to the guy, shook his hand, congratulated him on his success and said that her religion prevented the sale of knives. I am not making this up.
Finally he passes out personality tests. We had to rate ourselves on a scale from 1 to 5 on a variety of issues, like "Are you a go getter", "Do you consider yourself a people person", "How driven are you to succeed."
So, I of course, rated myself a one on everything and during the test the guy walks behind me, reads it, grabs it from me, rips it up and throws me out too.
Whew. When I got home, my dad told me that he knew that was what it was, but I was so excited for my first "real" interview, he thought he would just keep quiet.
What a nightmare.
Recent Sacramento Resident
Any way you can get out of there works for me. I'm sure there were plenty of people who wanted any excuse to get out without being humiliated.
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July 17th, 2004.