Backstabbing (even in interviews)

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And so, I decided to #YOLO and went ahead for the interview. Boy, it was so tough to wake up so early in the morning, especially when I went out with the Uncle Selfie clique for Marche dinner and came back at 11.30 pm the night before.

Anyway, kiasu Singaporeans were kiasu LOL. I reached early, about 20 minutes before the registration time of 8.30 am, but there were already SNAKING lines all over, just queuing up to get registered LOL. I was assigned the group number 38, which meant that there were 370 people in front of me already. ._.

I was already feeling nervous and was afraid that I wouldn't speak coherently. After about 15 minutes of standing the queue, I finally saw the head of the queue and they ushered us into the waiting room. Hahaha, it was the exact ballroom which I had stepped foot into more than 4 years back. After waiting for what seemed like an eternity, we were led to the interview room and the butterflies in my stomach were fluttering even harder.

There were 2 interviewers who interviewed the 10 of us. We had to stand up, give a short introduction about ourselves and then answer the random question that they asked us. To be honest, the question asked wasn't very hard (I've heard of even weirder ones like "What shape describes your personality?", "Which phone would you like to be?" etc.) but when it was my turn to start speaking, I was already quite a nervous wreck and I just gave answers which even my sister thought was lame (I recounted the interview to her afterwards when I reached home). I was expecting myself to be kicked out during the first round. We were then asked to go to the lift area to wait for our results.

To my surprise, I actually heard them call my name and that I had made it to the second round. In all, 6 people out of the 10 in my group made it to the second round. I guess we were lucky that we said things that were probably what the interviewers were looking out for because the previous group only had 2 out of 10 people making it through the second round. ;X

In the second round, they took our height and checked whether our hands could reach the green lines which they have taped onto the wall. The taller ones didn't have to take their height LOL. I guess I was one of the shortest around because many of the girls (at least those that I saw) didn't have to have their height taken. They only had to prove that they could reach those green lines, which they could easily without tiptoeing LOL. I had to tiptoe in order to reach the green lines. T_T Anyway, I passed this stage so all was good, so far.

Next was the checking of education certificates, which I got through as well. The checkers here were a bit grouchy LOL, and apparently they only checked your highest certificate obtained. I brought my whole portfolio for them and they only checked my degree certificate. #OKcan @_@ I passed this and then moved on to the next stage.

In the next round, we had to get our skin checked and this was where I feared that I would be told to go home. My skin, in comparison to the others who literally had skins that were as smooth as an egg, was dry with minor bumps all over. There were strong spotlights placed everywhere in the room so no flaws could really escape their eyes. When the interviewer checked my face, she said that I had chicken pox marks and asked me if they could be concealed with a concealer. I immediately replied "Yes." without thinking LOL. I really couldn't be kicked out, could I? The interviewer also thought likewise HAHA so while checking my face, she asked me a few questions regarding why I wanted this job blah blah blah. I tried to keep my composure and my smile. I think she was satisfied because afterwards, she told me to show her how I walked and I just did. I was told that if they just told you to go out without walking for them to see, it meant that you would be out. I was made to go outside to wait for the results of the skin check. A few minutes later, I was told that I had passed and could move on to the 4th round. There was this HK woman in my group who got on really well with me. She got booted out at the skin check stage. I couldn't understand why, because to us in the group, her skin was literally smooth like an egg and was glowing radiantly. 4 out of 10 people, including me, from the initial stage were left. ._.

The 4th round, which would also be the last interview round for the day, was also probably the scariest. I did fear for this stage, and my fear did come true LOL. This round was the management round. It seemed like they brought forward the management interview from the 6th stage to the 4th stage now. This stage consisted of a debate, a passage-reading, and we were also told to introduce our partners. I failed this stage unfortunately. I was really sad, and to me, it felt like a waste because I knew that if I had gotten pass this round, the job would have been 80% mine. Initially, I was very shocked when my name wasn't called out, because there was this girl whose English wasn't very good (her pronunciation wasn't clear and she did mispronounce some words) but she still passed this round. I think I didn't do well for the debate round, all thanks to this "good team-mate" I had who kinda sabotaged A (not the A who went to Korea with me) and I. During the preparation for the debate, we were given some time to think of the points to say, so we basically discussed the points we had and made sure we had something to say. Apparently, this "good team-mate" of mine got the privilege to present her points first so she ended up saying all the points that A and I had. -.-''' I was left totally shocked. A fortunately was able to come up with some of her own points after this "good team-mate" presented, but for me, I was a goner. Whatever I had wanted to say had already been presented by this "good team-mate" and A. I had no choice but just to repeat whatever points that this "good team-mate" had said. The interviewers for this round weren't being exactly very friendly, and I could tell that they were not very pleased.

When my name wasn't called out, I was quite sad, but I had expected it, so I didn't mope over it for long. In fact, I didn't expect myself to make it through round 1 so I ought to be very thankful instead. But I felt that had I been kicked out in round 1, I wouldn't have felt so bad because I know that if I had passed round 4, all I had to do was to do well for the remaining 2 rounds, which I had more confidence in passing, and the job would be mine. I was secretly happy when the "good team-mate" didn't pass this round as well, so I think the interviewers knew that she took all our points and presented it herself. A got through, and I was genuinely happy for her because she deserved it.

Upon further reflection and after telling my parents the experience I had, I, too, have myself to blame for not getting pass round 4. I was not able to think on my feet (A demonstrated this really well) and was left to regurgitate whatever had been said by my team-mates. A CC should have this ability and I, unfortunately, was not able to do so. I think I didn't smile as much as I did in the previous rounds (must be due to fatigue 'cos all the rounds took more than 3 hours and I woke up really early for this interview). The girl with bad English did smile a lot though so I guess her smile did put her through the final rounds.

Anyway, had I not failed, I wouldn't have gotten to know J, who just lives opposite me. It was such a nice feeling knowing somebody who finally lives in the West, because apparently almost everybody whom I had the chance to talk to all lived in the East. J also failed the 4th round so we were able to "console" each other LOL.

Anyway, all these must have happened for a reason. There were more than 1200 people interviewing for just less than 150 slots. This is really a very well-known and prestigious company so I know that they expect nothing but the very best. They have no shortage of people wanting to join them, and it's always the case of supply outstripping demand for them. To get in, I have to really stand out and make them want to hire me. Unfortunately, I wasn't at my "very best" but still, I thank the Lord for this experience. Without failure, I wouldn't have known where and what my mistakes were and improve on them.

I give thanks to the Lord for this experience gained and for the lessons learned. And who gives up on the first try? Definitely not me! J and I will definitely be going for the next recruitment drive in March!

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