Interviewing Tips to Avoid a Bad Decision
Most people who are interviewing have 1 thing in mind – get a job offer. This is certainly the proof that you interviewed well but before you accept that offer, make sure you did some appropriate interviewing on your own.
The traditional interviewing process is a series of meetings with company leaders to gauge the fit of the candidate. That’s fine and good, but you need to make sure the company fits your needs too. Consider Dave, a senior marketing executive who interviewed with a “fast-track” firm poised to go public in 4 years. The company had been in business for 15 years and the owners had just raised $32 million through a private equity firm. He met with the Chairman, CEO and Executive Vice President to whom he would be reporting. Throughout the fast-paced discussions, Dave kept mentioning he had a lot of questions but time never seemed to be available for him to dig deeper. And although he didn’t like the Chairman’s personality or management style, he felt that since he was on the other coast and 2 levels above his boss, that would probably be OK.
When the offer came, Dave, who was unemployed at the time, accepted the offer rather than keep looking for another position. And so the train left the station. Just 4 weeks later, the company announced it had a cash crisis – apparently the $32 million was not invested in the firm but in the previous owner’s pockets. His boss, the Executive Vice President was fired and the Chairman announced he was stepping into a co-CEO position and would be involved in daily operations.
The result is Dave spent more than a year in a hellish position that kept changing due to crisis management and poor leadership. The moral of the story is that if Dave had held to his goal of digging deeper into the company’s financial status, he would have skipped this opportunity and spent his energies wiser on finding the right fit. So despite the temptation to grab a job offer, make sure you get answers to your questions. Even if it delays the process, the company will only have more respect for you and might even make the offer more attractive.