She too arrived early for the most important interview of her career. Her mind raced during the overwhelming drive to the stately building. No meditation training helped ease the anxiety, which bled onto the receptionist’s desk. “H-H-Hi, I’m here for an interview with,” she checked her paperwork, “M-Marissa Desta and… Z-Zheng Harper.” “Yes. Can I see your ID, miss?” After blundering through innocent answers, she had a temporary badge, and a seat by the window.
“OK, Jane. We have time for one more question.”
“What’s the successful candidate look like in this role? What should I focus on to prevent myself from being unsuccessful?”
“Well, lemme tell you about the old guy. What a lazy bum! Couldn’t do nothing! He couldn’t understand anything we’d give ‘im! We’d tell him repeatedly how to do his assigned work and he’d seem to just forget! Stay away from the guy you are replacing!”
Jane’s first day back into a technical role began innocently. After meet-and-greets, her lead rambled through materials far above anything in her career scope, occasionally speaking another technical language. After realizing she was overwhelmed, she found an opening:
“Hey, umm… Gayle.”
“Oh, have a question about how I configured the Scribewise 88620 ports?”
“Yeah. I… didn’t understand any of that.”
“Yeah, I troubleshoot primarily Wilesware computers with customers.”
“Oh. Dear. You’re in the wrong job.”
“Thanks for meeting with me today, Jane.”
“Before we begin, would you like any coffee, water, or tea?”
“No, I’m good. Much appreciated.”
“So I’m looking to help out our lead on the team. The successful candidate will do what she thinks is best to complete the work as quickly as possible. Is that something you’re willing and able to do quickly?”
“Yes. I adapt quickly!”
“Good, good. How soon can you start?”
“Thanks for meeting with us today, Jane.”
She shifted subtly to get comfortable. Her dress suit was overkill because the hiring manager and assistant were dressed casually- no, sloppy. There was something odd about the industrial-strength conference room meant for fifty people. Maybe it was the polished concrete floors, reclaimed wood table, and ductwork? Maybe it was overly stylish?
“So, tell us about yourself.”
“I’m a professional with two years of experience in-”
The doctor returned from his lunch break, a carefully regimented respite to relax his brain by exploring the nuances of the campus with a sandwich and coffee, to find his microscope wasn’t working. The door was locked. Nothing seemed disturbed. He tried a few things before calling in for help. “IT, this is Sam.” “Hi Sam, Dr. Florigen. My microscope isn’t working.” “Can we run some tests over the phone or should I run over?”
“You know, this can be hard work, but at the end of the day, it’s not too bad. We’re not diggin’ ditches or doin’ brain surgery.”
“Yeah, beats retail.”
Jane, and her driver buddy Jim, were headed to their first delivery on a cold morning.
“But you know somethin’? You’ve got more brains than all a’ us. You should be goin’ places.”
“Yeah, should.” She slouched in the seat and continued reading her technical book.