Thursday, August 03, 2006

My Day at 1-800-Got-Crap...

Had another Job interview this week! It was for the company 1-800-got junk. If you have junk, and you need it hauled away you call these people and they take care of it. The Job I applied for was to be one of the people on the phone who would book your appointment and make the sale.

I had the interview at noon on Wednesday and I took Transit... I knew I was in trouble as soon as I walked out of the apartment because I was already sweating. Anderson boys sweat, we sweat so bad that white T-shirts must be worn at all times under ANYTHING! Well, I was already getting wet spots on my arm pits by the time I reached the Sky Train. One bus transfer later and the wet marks were even bigger... "OH Crap that was my stop" I think to myself, as the bus drove past my destination of west 3rd avenue, missed by me, due to the frantic fanning of my underarms in a desperate move to stop the growing dark wet spots. The wetness was advancing much like those old movie newsreel animations showing how the Third Reich swept across Europe in 1939.

"No Problem" I think "I'll just get off at the next stop..". Well, that didn't happen until 12 blocks later as this was an 'Express bus' with limited stops! I had only 20 minutes until my interview started, but I lucked out as the next bus comes along right away and I'm making my way back to west 3rd. The correct Bus stop is reached, and I have 5 minutes to make it to 1-800-got-junk. So I have to run... If you thought the sweating was bad before, you have no idea how a slight jog in the heat will aggravate the situation.

I make it to the Interview with a minute to spare, but now the pit stains are so big that simply keeping my arms down won't hide them. The pools of perspiration are now the size of pie plates underneath each arm and I don't even want to know if I have dreaded back sweat!

First thing I notice about the 1-800-got-junk office is that it's all filled with early to mid 20-somethings all wearing T-shirts with Iron-on transfers from the 80's that were cool when I was 12, but now have a certain cheese factor so they are 'cool' again. Then, after after finding out there is no receptionist to report to (I'm told that's "Too Corporate"), I mange to make myself known and lean up against a wall painted with inspirational messages. I look down and see the sweat marks have almost reached my shirt breast pockets... I think that' a personal best for sweating.

Then out of nowhere a giant Dog comes up, puts his paws on my thighs and starts sniffing at my crotch! It's like a scene out of a bad Chick Flick starring Hugh Grant. "Oh he's just the CEO's Dog" a young 20 something woman with 4 piercing in her face says...."Hi! Come with me and we'll get the Interview going". The Interview had me and 2 others being interviewed at once by two people who were younger than me. I've been in situations lately where I've been reminded I'm getting older, like hearing kids talk about 'Old Music" like The Beastie Boys or Huey Lewis like it was a Lawrence Welk repeat on PBS. But I've never been interviewed for employment by two people younger than me.

A quick glance around this office saw about 60 High School type cubicles with these 'Cheesy/cool' T-Shirt wearing people sitting at their phones surrounded by inspirational messages about aiming higher (higher sales I would assume) and sales quota numbers. I looked around for Alec Baldwin screaming at people to close their sales a la "Glen Garry Glen Ross" but he was nowhere to be seen...

The Interview started with the girls apologising that they didn't bring the Blue Wigs for us to wear. Excuse me....Blue Wigs? Apparently, they actually make the candidates wear blue wigs during the interview to show they are willing to be part of the 1-800-junk family! This is not a joke or an exaggeration for the sake of a good story... They really do this. So no wigs to go along with my dinner plate sized pit stains, what a pity...

The next 90 minutes of this group interview are a hazy memory of buzzwords like "Think outside the Box", "Sales Coach" instead of the proper term Sales manager (I know I lost points when I had to ask what the hell a 'Sales Coach' was), the word Synergy was used far too often, along with the phrase 'team member' instead of employee.

Since it was a 'Group Interview' to hire new 'Team Members'.... I kind of zoned out during the other applicants answers (We all said the same thing anyhow) and noticed they had a pool table and a foosball table for employees. I also noticed they weren't being used. I've always heard about these companies that offer all these extras for employees but frown upon their use as it means you have too much free time and need to be working more

Anyhow despite my Lawrence of Arabia type sweating, and being slightly ill at ease with the 'Hipness' of the company I really felt I did well with my answers and did okay with the interview overall. It turns out however that I didn't do okay. My uneasiness at the hard sales approach and hipster dofus image this company tried hard to present must have come through as I got the call today telling me that they just weren't interested.

I didn't ask why they didn't want me, as images of how I must have looked with Lake's Superior and Huron under my arms, and my lack of disappointment when the blue wigs weren't brought out basically told me it probably was for the best. But the fact is, not getting a second interview REALLY bothers me personally. I could have done what they wanted, at least for a while. I know it's not a personal attack on me that I didn't get the job, but part of me feels that way. And also part of me is actually thinking I was just too old. I'm only 34 and I was too old. That thought is kind of scary... I've never been too old for anything!

Again, It's all probably for the best I'm not there, but it still sucks being turned down for something you think you could have done. It also puts doubts in your mind if anyone will want me to work for them doing anything. But that's bullshit thinking, we all know it. I'll get something soon, and I won't have to wear a Blue Wig or fight off the CEO's dog to do it


Anonymous said...

Screw them! I hate cool people, like the starbucks idiots who are all in on the same private joke. IT'S COFFEE, GET A LIFE!
Its better off that they didn't have a chance to spend too much time with you, no one would get anything done what with hanging off your every word as you regale them with stories.
Losers I tell you , losers

Anonymous said...

That wasn't anonymous, that was me Amanda, I can't figure out how to work this comment thing, duh.

Chris said...

I'd have loved to have seen you in the blue wig though . . . :-)

Maybe it's time to give Matt Dorval a call. If you think you could have drank the Got-Junk kool-ade, Norpac's couldn't taste any worse.

Auntie Glo said...

Hey! Next time we are down that way we will take Meg into meet the CEO Dog and we will see who is boss. lol I knw I should have saved those sweat shields form Grama's.

Anonymous said...

Hey buddy, Sandor here.......I HATE those "cool"
people too, or should I say, wanabees!
Tell them...Don't try to be hip with your lip rings
and A-Team t-shirts, they're just looking even more like bigger dorks.
People like these probably purchase their fashion at the retro store Cherrybomb, on Granville Street in Downtown Vanvouver.
Guy's like you Gregg, you're A-Team shirt needed! You would have gone zonkers working there and having to put up with those posers anyway.
Hope you get a gig soon!
Speaking of sales, I'd certainly buy a car from you!
You could be the next King of Cars.
Catch ya later dude....

Anonymous said...

sandor here again, sorry for my badd sellling
see ya!

Anonymous said...

1-800-got-crap will be in the dumpster within two years. The 'entrepreneur' who thought up the idea will be onto some other 'cool gig' that he has thought up and the blue wig wearers with their retro shirts will be flipping burgers at Mickey D's wishing they had played more foosball.
This is a great opportunity for you to do what you want to! What do you really enjoy doing? Apart from polishing the penguin to Ghost Whisperer. Move to wherever you need to do to get it done my man and may the force be with you.

Monkey Pants said...

Man, admit it. You'd love to work there, otherwise you wouldn't have spent the time to write this post. In addition, the comments you made about people who work at 1-800-GOT-JUNK are pretty wild generalizations. Yes, there are a lot of people in the call centre that dress like dickheads, but the majority of the corporate staff dress in your average casual business clothes. And by the way, you're lying about the dog. He's a tiny Shiba Inu that stands about a foot and a half tall. Unless you're an elf, that's not what would be normally considered a "Giant Dog". :)

Gregg Anderson said...

Ummmm no, I wouldn't want to work there. I obviously hit upon enough truths about your company to irk you into writing me.

And if you bothered to read my post you'll see that my bitterness is explained, and my point is NOT the company was stupid for not hiring me. I paint myself as much a fool as I saw the majority of the early 20 somethings that work there.

Thats great that you drank the kool-aid, saw the light, crusade against nay sayers on the internet, and want to work for 13 bucks an hour. Good for you. I now run a Museum and am so glad I didn't make the 1-800 'family' as I am much further ahead financially and Professionally than I ever would have been at 1-800-got-Junk.

As for the Dog, it's called poetic license... look it up. Did you actually think my pit stains were the size of 'Dinner Plates' too?

Anonymous said...

No I didn't think your pitstains were the size of dinner plates either. I just thought you were a bitter, going nowhere malcontent, and that's probably how you came across in the interview.

Good for you for getting another job. You must be doing something right (and different from when you wrote this entry). Onward and upwards. Try to keep it positive though - it's easy to judge anyone for anything. Think the people you manage at your job now don't have a thing or two to say about you?

Gregg Anderson said...

Holy, you are seriously earning your 13 bucks an hour. What sane person responds to a comment on a personal blog (other than the person who wrote the blog... me) two years after his first comment? Are you even the same person?

In the now famous "interview" I probably came across as somebody who has enough independent thought that couldn't be hoodwinked into thinking he was in a good situation. It's quite apparent you are either paid to spread lame happy bullshit about a 'crap company' and defend it in pointless comments on personal blogs, or, you are simply in a dire need of some sort of real human contact. I feel bad for you.

But not so bad that I don't want you to fuck off back to your 1-800-got-crap 4' cubicle! Unless of course you have the balls to sign your actual name to what you've said here.

Anonymous said...

hey, I like your comments about 1800 get a brain, according to the business newspapers this company does about 100 million a year in sales across a few thousand franchisee's, from what I have read about 80 percent of the franchisee's who paid their $ 100,000 fee a waste of money and they can't wait to sell what they bought, I also read the head office frown on franchisee's advertising theirs for sale, because head office is still trying to sell units - you were lucky not to join the company, all your efforts would lasted a few years until the co. goes out of business - I want to keep my post private because the last thing I need is a 1800gotwaste lawyer sending me letters -