The BLOG: Voices

Do THIS In A Job Interview, Millennial, And I’ll Punch You In The Throat

Ok, ok.  I won’t REALLY punch you in the throat.  But for the love of God, somebody should.  You’re giving all millennials a bad name.

The last couple of years have brought rapid growth for our company.  And with that has come rapid hiring.

And with rapid hiring comes an increasing belief that most people shouldn’t be applying for jobs.  They should be going back to 4th grade to learn how to spell. 

Or perhaps, upon climbing the stairs out of mommy and daddy’s basement, they should be asking daddy to borrow his grown up clothes.

So I’m going to give you all a gift.  It’s a pile of advice for people who hope to get a job.  And it’s from someone who has interviewed more schlubs than I ever could have nightmare’d about.

And yes, I’m well aware that I just made up two words.  You people have done this to me.

1. Follow The Instructions

When the job description says “send resume, cover letter and references”, what it REALLY means is “send resume, cover letter and references”. Seriously.

Your inability to follow the very basic instructions means that at best, you’re going to drop the ball regularly if you work for me.  Seriously.  Don’t screw up the very first step.

2. No, you’re not going to get five weeks of vacation for an entry level position.

Oh, your daddy told you you’re WORTH five weeks of vacation?  Your daddy is a moron and gave you too many participation trophies when you were growing up. 

Please, hold your indignant gasp.  I’ll be happy to tell him that to his face.

3. No, your “liberal arts degree from a $60k/year school” doesn’t make you more qualified than someone who chose to work for four years instead of going to school.

You went to Harvard?  No way! 

Ok, now that we have that out of the way…ask me how much I care.

Zippo. 

If anything, I’m judging your logic and ability to make smart decisions for getting $300,000 into debt because you wanted to party at an expensive school for five years while you “discovered” yourself.

4. Want to know what “no phone calls” means? It means if you then call us, you’re no longer in the running.

That doesn’t make you “stand out”.  It makes you a bad listener.  You want to really show your chops?  Reach out to me through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Snapchat with a video about why I should hire you.  I’m down with that.

But so help me God.  The second I get a phone call from you, you’re more screwed than the state of Connecticut’s budget.

5. If you avoid number 4 repeatedly, you’ve now entered stalker status.

I had this guy send in his stuff.  Looked decent.  My Director of Operations, Allison, and I were both traveling on business for a week.  Every day, he left countless voicemails on the business line, our cell phones (don’t ask me how he got them) and blew up our email.

He’s lucky he didn’t interview.  Allie would have shanked him with a dull butter knife. 

6. Don’t tell me that you don’t like the content I put out because it’s “too controversial” and that I’d have to “tone it down” for you to work for me. Really. That’s a very bad idea. Like…super bad idea.

Do you go on a first date and tell the woman she shouldn’t order a salad when she’s a vegan?  No.  You find out she’s a vegan before you go out and you avoid going on a date with her.  It won’t take a lot of research.  Those people don’t shut up about it.  Like…ever.

The moral of that story is you should do your homework about a company first.  And you should never date vegans.  You can’t trust someone who doesn’t like bacon.

7. When you ask a potential employer to triple the amount of sick days in a job offer…. you get three letter response: GFY.

It’s not about the paid time off.  It’s about the fact that you just showed me you’re likely to call out of work sick – a lot.  If you’ve got a legitimate health situation – that’s a different story – but address that early on and a good boss will be more than happy to work with you on it. 

But asking them to triple your sick time just “because”?  Sounds to me like you need a little over the counter laxative…because clearly, you’re full of ….

8. When you throw my staff under a bus and tell me they didn’t respond to you fast enough, three letters: GFY.

Then there was the guy who didn’t hear back about his resume submission “quickly enough”.  So he went on Facebook and complained on a job posting we put up, saying the person in charge of booking interviews at our office was dropping the ball and had probably ignored him.

Guess who else is ignoring you now?

9. When interviewing for a job, don’t tell the CEO you “don’t really know what I want to do with the rest of my life”.

Fine, ok.  90% of people don’t know what they want to do with the rest of their lives.

Lie to me.  Make me feel like you have a little direction or ambition in life.  At least try and dupe me.

10. Don’t come on too strong. It doesn’t work in dating. It definitely won’t work in a job interview.

I know you want the job.  But calm down.  Crush the interview first in a mature, professional manner.  Looking like a single 35-year-old bridesmaid about to knock some wenches out and pounce on the bouquet when it’s tossed doesn’t make you look hirable – it makes you look desperate. 

And you’ve got a crazy look in your eyes that’s freaking me out a little.

But alas – the days of interviewing clowns is over.  As I told you about last week, I now require that any prospective employee with potential fills out The Snowflake Test.  And my God has that saved me from the overwhelming desire to punch people in the throat.

Kyle S. Reyes is President and CEO of The Silent Partner Marketing. He’s also an acclaimed keynote speaker on entrepreneurship, leadership, marketing and social media. You can follow him on Facebook.