The unlikely story of how I got the job: Part 1

Like most of my peers, one of my biggest concerns in the past month or so was finding a job. More importantly, it had to be a job that I like or am passionate about. I didn’t want to be one of those people who valued their position or salary more than the work itself or worse, those people who put up with their jobs for the sake of being able to say that they actually have one.

At first, it seemed pretty easy to do- just apply for the jobs that I like and disregard the others that I think wouldn’t suit me. But then, gradually, thoughts pop up in your head. Are you really qualified for the job that you like? How many people out there who also applied for the same job are better and more qualified than you? When you hear people from school, especially those who got higher grades than you (which, if I’m being completely honest, is probably half of the senior student population), talk about looking for work, you can’t help but panic a little and start scrambling to send your resume to every company with a job opening. And I’m quite embarrassed to admit that no amount of praying on my part assured me enough to stop me from reacting in the exact same way.

Overall, I think I applied for seven jobs. I got accepted in four.

If you read my graduation speech (because I strongly feel that every graduate is entitled to one), you’d understand why I have the tendency to cower when faced with a bunch of choices, especially when all the choices seem so appealing. I know, I know. Why apply for seven when I couldn’t even choose between four, right? Like I said, I panicked. But this whole experience for me has been an absolute blessing because I was able to witness firsthand how God works His magic.

Early February, I applied for the Jr. Creative Writer position at an events management agency. I’ve never heard of the agency before. I was only interested in the position. I honestly did not expect to receive a call from them because, first, when I checked their website, I found that most of their clients are high profile and huge corporate companies; second, the only official experience I’ve had was working as a copy editor for the student council paper and while that screams “I have crazy good grammar!”, it doesn’t particularly say “I’m also a good writer”; and third, they only had one opening and I hadn’t even officially graduated college when I sent my resume. Because I had close to zero expectation of being deemed qualified, I forgot all about it. It was really easy to do since I didn’t hear anything from them ’til the last week of March. By then, I had already received my first job offer as a copy editor at a publishing company, which I turned down because my gut feeling was telling me that I’d be miserable, copy editing medical and business journals all day every day.

On March 25th, I went for my first interview and initial writing exam with the head of the HR department of the events agency. If I had close to zero expectation of landing the job going into the interview, I had negative 100000000 expectation coming out of it. Seriously, it was that bad. There were many factors. Namely:

  1. He asked me if I liked to party. I said I didn’t and that I’m the type of person who’d rather stay at home than go out at night. It didn’t even occur to me that I was applying for a job in an EVENTS agency and that creating and attending parties are what the company’s about. The fact that my interviewer frowned after I gave my answer was what made me realize that painfully obvious information but by then it was too late, which brings me to number two.
  2. He asked what made me want to work for the said company. Okay, before I tell you my answer, you should know that after his party question, my small hope of landing the job just flew out the window of a one million-story building, landed in the gutter and was flushed down to the deepest depths of the earth. So when he asked me that question, I figured it couldn’t hurt anymore to just tell him the truth. And I did. I told him I’ve never heard of the company and that the only reason I applied for it is because of the job position.
  3. After being interviewed, I was tasked to write a detailed account of a social event/party that I’ve personally attended. This could have been easy… if I actually went to one. I spent five years in college, not once did I ever attend a frat party or a concert after party. I’ve only been to a club twice and that was only because I wanted to dance, and in both times I was in bed by 1 a.m. Really, I’d make any parent proud. Anyway, I was faced with a choice of either making something up or just writing about something that might just embarrass me further. Again, I figured I was already doing amazingly horrible anyway so I might as well just go all out. So I wrote about my high school prom. I’m 22 years old, just recently graduated from college, and I wrote about my high school prom for a company that’s known for organizing fashion shows, product launches and massive corporate parties. I swear it took everything and more for me to keep myself from bursting out laughing because that’s what I do when I know I’m the butt of the joke – I laugh at myself before anyone else gets a chance to.
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12 thoughts on “The unlikely story of how I got the job: Part 1

  1. Sammy April 21, 2013 / 5:57 pm

    Great story telling. Looking forward to Part 2.

  2. christina Waschko April 21, 2013 / 7:20 pm

    Hi girl, here is a long overdue “congratulations”. I love reading your stories, well written- but hey, what did I expect- you are a master in your field! All the best in your new life, and welcome to the working pupulation!

    • Kathryn G April 22, 2013 / 1:31 pm

      Thanks so much! It’s already a big thing for me when people actually read my posts. To hear someone enjoying them is just really uplifting. Thank you. I wish you all the best as well!

  3. Simpli April 21, 2013 / 7:20 pm

    Lol! I know exactly how you feel. For the job I landed I ended up crying during the third part of my interview. So embarrassing! You are a great writer so there’s that aspect of how you landed your job. I enjoyed your post.

    • Kathryn G April 22, 2013 / 1:36 pm

      Oh, really? That’s definitely one experience you’ll never forget. I always say our embarrassing moments now will be our greatest stories in the future, so good on you!

    • Kathryn G April 22, 2013 / 1:40 pm

      I’m sorry if it seemed like I was complaining because I definitely wasn’t. It’s a blessing to have options, for sure. I’m just saying having options scares me a little.

  4. caroline April 21, 2013 / 8:19 pm

    You obviously said/did something right! Congrats on the job though!

    • Kathryn G April 22, 2013 / 1:42 pm

      I guess I did. I’m just not sure what it is yet. Thanks a lot!

  5. supashmo April 22, 2013 / 1:32 pm

    Well-written. Sometimes, when applying for jobs or whatever, you look down and think, “Yep, blew it,” so you may as well enjoy it. Sounds like you did. But according to the title, you had fun AND didn’t blow it, so nice!

    • Kathryn G April 22, 2013 / 1:47 pm

      Thank you very much! Yes, that’s exactly how I felt during the whole thing – like my chances of getting that job was like a tiny little seed and I just dropped an atomic bomb right on top of it with that interview. But the seed survived! God’s awesome.

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