Work It | First Interview

by , posted on September 10th, 2014 in Features, Work It

dorothy parker quote

For years now, I’ve been living the very glamorous life of a freelancer. I’ve been a writer, designer and illustrator. There was even a period where I did “social media consulting.”

Freelance has been great. And yes, the stories are true; there are many perks. There’s flexibility! I’m (kinda) my own boss! I get to work in my PJs!

There are also many pitfalls. Slow months… Requesting checks… Waiting for checks… The grind of constantly rallying… The grind of being your own cheerleader… Slow months… Never having ‘off’ hours… Worrying that you’ve gone feral… Maintaining your sanity…

Some months back I decided I needed a part-time job out of the house. That last part was the key. I missed people. As much as people drive me nuts (not you people, you know, other people), I missed them. I also missed a steady paycheck. So I started looking for a job. Like a real one. Like one you actually have to wear pants to. You know, a job like everyone else has. Like one I used to have.

After some tortured soul-searching, I typed up a resume (and may I say, I look mighty fine on paper), and started looking. Now if you’re like me, and have been working from home, let me warn you that traditional job searching is an exercise in humility. More correctly phrased, it’s likely to make you feel like dung. Every job wants you to be proficient in not one job, but FIVE jobs and yet, pay you for only half of one of those jobs. But I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know.

This is not a pity party. It’s just a story. A story to say…

On Monday, I had my first real interview in close to ten years. It was fun and I met some really lovely people. I remembered not to drop any f-bombs and I didn’t eat before hand. There would be no food stuck in the teeth of this gal. No siree.

It would be nice to get the job, but if I don’t, at least I got back on the horse, right?

Any sage interviewing tips for me?

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9 Responses to “Work It | First Interview”

  1. Alexandra Hedin Says:

    September 10th, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    Hooray and good luck! What a week you’ve had. Finger crossed for you

    Jennifer Cooper Reply:

    It has been a… ugh, an awful week actually. Although there have been some bright spots. Your birthday party festivities being some of them!

    What I didn’t tell anyone was the morning of my interview, I had to call a friend to come pick me up from the grocery store because I lost my car key (it broke off) somewhere in the store. Ahh, life. ;)

    Thank goodness for friends, right?

  2. Giulia Doyle Says:

    September 10th, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    Yayy! Good luck. Be yourself, don’t bad mouth anybody or any place you’ve worked at, don’t say ‘perfectionist’ is your weakness ;), talk about your ‘side projects’ , be informed about the company and make sure to ask questions about the company,culture, mission, where they see themselves and how they see you contributing to their goals. Don’t ask about benefits, vacation times, etc. until it’s the appropriate time.

    Jen Reply:

    All excellent advice Giulia! But what if ‘perfectionism’ is my only weakness? Ahahaha!

    I think they could take one peek at my typos and know I was full of it.

  3. Allison Says:

    September 10th, 2014 at 4:33 pm

    Why do you ALWAYS say what I’m thinking? This is such a good (and from the heart) article. I will be reading the responses . . . and taking notes! Good luck with the search and remember — my pom poms are shaking in anticipated victory on your behalf!

    Jennifer Cooper Reply:

    Thank you Allie!! xo

  4. Jen Says:

    September 10th, 2014 at 5:04 pm

    Remember – the interview is MORE about whether the job suits you than do you suit their job ;)
    xx good luck xx

    Jennifer Cooper Reply:

    Jen, that is an excellent way to think about it! Relieves some of the presssssssure.

  5. JIll P Says:

    September 10th, 2014 at 6:17 pm

    I’m thrilled you had your first interview – now the rest will be cake!

    This next stage of your career will be exciting and you can make it happen on your terms. Even better!

    Looking forward to hearing about your adventures in job hunting! xoxo

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