Monday, October 18, 2010

Regarding The Interview That Went Awry

This morning at ten, the Director of Admissions Services / Personnel & Facilities Director promptly called. She started the conversation with, "Before we begin, I want you to know that I think we found a better candidate than you [simply because she is bilingual]. I am going to be interviewing her this afternoon, but I'd like to ask you if you'd still like to go through with the interview?" I replied by saying something to the effect of you need to do what you think is best for your organization.

However, we chatted about writing and poetry, because she noticed from my cover letter that I was a skilled writer. She even said that she had never in all her years of employment read cover letter that was as well crafted as the one I sent BGU last Friday afternoon. I have decided to post it here since I spent twelve hours crafting it:

I am interested in applying to Bakke Graduate University for employment as an office assistant and receptionist. I possess a plethora of talents ranging from attention to detail, to numerical accuracy, to tenacity, to verbal/written creativity, to reliability, to organization, and to interpersonal relationship skills that could be utilized to further Bakke’s mission for positive change in our world. And this is the crux of why this position fascinates me.

Most of the tasks/duties I have been employed to perform utilize one of my strongest gifts: the ability to track details. In my last position, I worked as AR/AP bookkeeper for a (no longer extant) door and window company. I also have experience as a receptionist and office/admin assistant for a mental health agency and for a Podiatrist. A year ago, I finished a three-year commitment to a charity where I donated about twenty hours of my time each month as their treasurer. Further, I have experience working in academic settings as a substitute instructional assistant in seven Yamhill County school districts and at Linfield College where I worked three semesters as a teacher’s assistant in the Physics department. The most interesting job I did at the college was watching lead acid batteries charge and discharge while tracking and recording, at precisely prescribed time intervals, the amperage and the temperature of the subject.

It is important, as you know, for any front office person to have an enjoyable gracious voice answering and redirecting caller’s inquiries. Well, I happen to have such a voice (or so, I have been told). As an illustration of the timbre, I sang tenor for four years in a Gospel Choir. Another important detail for your consideration is that I live less than one mile away from your office and thus, there are no transportation issues that would prevent me from arriving at/before the appointed time (even during the most arduous of weather conditions). Another gift that I developed is the ability to organize an idea into a tangible working mechanism. For example, in my life outside of employment, I organized two different writers groups one dedicated to the craft and the other to the seeds of an individual’s creative voice.

In summation, I’m an experienced administration person who can produce consistent high quality work both in front and back office settings. Lastly, the most intriguing aspect of this position is, that it exists in an academic setting. I have dedicated much of my life to the pursuit of knowledge. And I would very much be impassioned to become a part of that process for others in the capacity that I can best serve.

At the end of the conversation she wished me well and that I can find a place of employment that will appreciate all of my talents or that will be a glove that I can fit into. But of course the unasked question cruising through my mind was, what if there is no such place for me?


  1. Bill, if blind, no leg people can find spouses, trust me, you can find a job...:). Just saying.

  2. I wasn't saying that I couldn't find a job. I was asking the question what, in the world of employment that there is no place that is a perfect fit for me or a place where I could thrive. Maybe being a fit for a job is not important.