This blog is going to document the process of a technical adult moving in with another technical adult (my boyfriend) and living together as grown ups. It will mostly be a running log of our consistent surprise at the rest of the world not quite meeting expectations.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Dicphering Job Descriptions

Whenever potential employers call me in response to job inquiries I immediately pull up Notepad on my laptop and start taking notes. While they're talking, I type furiously so at the end of the phone call I will have basic info and a general description of the job they're calling me about.

I recently got a call about a job that would be with A Company That Owns Another Company that Does Business with Another Company that distributes free publications from... Some Other Company. Over the phone it sounded pretty sweet, and exactly what I'm looking for at the moment. Administrative, part time, paying more than $9/hr. The company was a distribution center for free publications -- you know, the little magazines you see on those dinky metal racks on your way out of Blockbuster or the supermarket? Those. This company puts those out there.

Two phone calls later, I had an interview. The degrees of separation between company names didn't bother me so much as the fact there was no sign on the door. 80D was just that; 80D. There was no lobby, no desk, no receptionist. You might think that was a good thing, since ideally I was looking into being the administrative person. So after I stepped around a few empty cardboard boxes, over a batch of wires, and poked my head into the first office, I was met with a man who looked like an aging version of every open-shirt, hairy chest character ever. We'll call him Dick, not that he was one.

He and the other guy I met were friendly enough. The older gentleman (not Dick) wore jeans and a plaid shirt. I felt over dressed in my skirt and heels. Sitting there, wondering if my jacket was bunching inappropriately, I was tag teamed as they began to explain in vivid detail what my job would be. Not if I got it -- what it would be. They went on to explain how people were getting fired so they could hire me. On a more cheery note, they explained that two other girls were leaving because there was "no money left in it for them." So, they saw my resume and liked me. They liked my background, my resume, and there it was. As I was given a brief tour and then once again asked to sit down in front of a 6ft tall map of the state, one thing became clear:


Everything I had been told over the phone was a grossly manipulated to sound like, uhm, a real entry level job. In reality, it was a ridiculous job that pays well, yes, but requires you to be driving 85% of your day. $150/week for a car allowance is NOT worth the wear and tear on your vehicle.

Here's a table to help better understand the fuckassery of this interview. On the left are actual phrases I typed during my Notepad/Phone Call session (that is, what I was TOLD about the job); on the right is what I learned during the interview.

What They Said
What They Meant
No Benefits
No Benefits
Looking for a person to be part of the [City] team who would be:
Looking for a person who will be part of the [City] branch, but actually working alone everyday and:
Responsible for operations management and support the general manager
Drive to dozens of stores to check on the free publication magazine racks and make sure the person who was there yesterday delivering them set it up right
Assisting the general manager in contracting and supervising
^ If not, tell the general manager
Manage trucks coming in and out
Unload magazines off truck and onto pallets in the warehouse

Assist in scheduling

Do things at .. times.
Monitoring delivery of product
Delivering magazines all over the fucking place
Dealing with distribution service center issues
Cleaning the warehouse when it gets dirty
Some cleaning
Cleaning the warehouse when it gets dirty, as well as wiping down magazine racks in stores when people’s shitty children stick gum and other fluids to them
Do anything necessary in coordinating routes
Taking on someone’s route when they call out of work
Be able to lift at least 25lbs
Lift heavy stacks of magazines on a daily basis, be it onto shelves, pallets, off a truck, onto a truck, into my car, out of my car
Needless to say, I'm turning them down. They asked me to call them if I was interested (I had said I needed to mull it over and compare possible numbers of car insurance hikes vs. pay) and I'll be giving them the big N-O in the next day or two. 

No really. They said it twice. It was not a joke. I DID NOT BUY A $25 SKIRT FROM MACY'S TO DRIVE A FORKLIFT, TYVM.

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