I’ve really only had one or two mock interviews but it feels like I’m being dragged through these social hoops I’m somehow supposed to jump through. Except I don’t. I trip and stumble through them and miss a whole bunch of them. I am clumsy at navigating this space and nothing wants to move. My timing is off and I could hear the hoops clattering to the ground.
In other words, it’s awkward.
I tried a mock interview today but it was slightly hampered by my lack of good mood (I had a headache. I thought it would go away overnight but I woke up in the morning and it was still there!). Oh and plus a somewhat misplace of humour.
Okay, maybe you can try to lighten the mood but the way I did it probably won’t work either – which is to be extremely, hilariously blunt (to be fair, I thought it was funny as did the mock interviewer). What else I was supposed to say on the spot? My thoughts stop so I couldn’t make anything up (which would likely be some other snarky comment…so maybe it’s just as well) and it’s hard when the job in question is basically your nightmare.
It didn’t help that the job that we were pretending to do this with is totally not the job for me. It’s almost along the lines of “my worst nightmare” which is customer service and banking, combined! Ugh. (Although my dislike of banks probably has more to do with my association with them which always involves my mom forcing me to do something). I am not the one for customer service and every time customer service approaches me, I start walking away! If it’s an writing-based setting (online chat, answering emails, letters etc) than that could be a possibly. But face to face customer service and dealing with the general public? I’m not sure how long that would last….
But right now, I feel like I don’t really have the skills to back up my lack of social skills. Temple Grandin recommends to keep a portfolio of work because our personalities will not sell (and that is how she got her jobs). As she notes here
What you have to do is sell your skills rather than yourself. I’m a big believer in making portfolios. Make a nice portfolio of some of your very best coding. People are going to look at that and say ‘wow, that’s really good coding’.
That’s something I’ve had to do my whole life– I mean, I sold jobs by sending out a portfolio of drawings and pictures of jobs i have designed. I sell my work rather than myself.
– Temple Grandin, transcript from Oct 2002
While I am very fortunate that my fields of interest are portfolio based, I do not have the body of work and I don’t feel like I have the skill to completely sell myself based on that. Not yet anyway. I will try to continue to work on my portfolios but I’ll probably still have to hoop hop.
So I suppose it’s back to the hoop hopping. Even though I cannot seem to pick my feet up in time. Even though I feel like I’m knocking down a bunch of hoops that I didn’t even know was there. Even though it feels so incredibly unnatural. Even though it goes against my inclinations.
Gah!! I know, I know, first world problems…but I just don’t know how that’s going to happen since it’s so against my nature…