Advice on what to do in this situation.

Discussion in 'Business, Careers & Education' started by michaelyork, May 27, 2013.

  1. michaelyork

    michaelyork Senior member

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    I applied for a job last January. I had a preliminary interview, which went OK. I was asked to do a series of skills tests. I think that impressed them and they took me seriously. I had another interview meeting everyone at top-level. The whole process took 2 months.
    After the final interview, after not hearing back for 2 weeks, I reached out, and got the following reply a couple of days later:

    "Michael,

    We should have a conversation tomorrow. The comments from your visit were damned interesting. One of the guys you met said "Smartest guy of the three". I would concur, in that you have the best background of anyone we talked to.

    That said, I am going to hire someone else for the immediate position. I promised you honest feedback, and you'll get that. Everyone agreed that you came across as very bright and very skilled, but as nervous. You will overcome nerves, given the chance, but you also need some time to do that.

    If you are able, we should speak tomorrow. My hope, and I can't promise that plans will stay on track, but my hope assuming that you are still amenable would be to bring you into the firm in mid- to late-Q3 of this year. And then give you something between six months and a year to learn the ropes, come out on meetings with me, present some things to our desk and to clients, and get very comfortable in the role before we throw you into the arena.

    Hope that helps. I am sorry that I couldn't be writing with better news, but I found two very strong candidates in this search, and I want to hire both of you as soon as possible.

    Regards
    "

    Next day, he did indeed telephone me, and spoke to me for 20 minutes. He basically re-iterated the above comments. He also said he would be reaching out to me periodically over the summer, and said I could do the same if I wished.

    My question is this:

    1. What do you make of this? Do I believe this guy? He came across as sincere...if he wasn't he had me fooled. Did they hire someone else, to try this person out for 3 probationary months, and are keeping me in the wings if it doesn't work out with that person?

    2. I have been admitted to a Masters program, to start August 20. I applied to the Masters as a backup in case I didn't get a job in the meantime. I will forego the Masters if I get this job, but I am not sure how the timing will work, since the Masters also starts middle to late Q3. The Masters will involve substantial payments which are non-refundable, if I choose to quit after a few weeks. Do I tell this job that I am unavailable after August 20, because I will have committed to the Masters by then?

    Any advice gratefully appreciated!
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2013
  2. VinnyMac

    VinnyMac Senior member

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    1) What you should make of it is that you need to get yourself a better personality. If you didn't get hired because the interviewers thought that you were nervous, then you must have been a real sight to see. You should start working on that IMMEDIATELY.

    2) Signing up for a Masters program as a "back up" is a stupid idea. You either want to do it or you don't. You're not going to get as much out of it if you're just trying to "find yourself" or you're going because you don't have what it takes to deal with the job market. That's just another sign of the cowardly nervousness that the interviewer mentioned. If you want to work, then go and get a job.

    3) If the guy said that he wants to give you a chance and you want the chance, then you should act like you believe him. Follow up. Ask about when you'll be able to start and what you'll be expected to do. The fact that you took him seriously will make him do one of two things: give you a chance or show that he's a lying sack of shxt. Either way, you'll be better off by knowing.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2013
  3. michaelyork

    michaelyork Senior member

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    Thank you for your reply.

    I think I should rephrase my question:
    I have shown this e-mail to about 10 people, who know me in real life. All of them have laughed in my face and called me a retard for believing this guy. A few of the people suggested that they have hired someone else, are trying them out for 3 months and if it doesn't work with that person, they are keeping me as a backup. If it works out with that person, then they'll say their situation has changed and blow me off accordingly.

    Is that plausible?

    In any event, do you have any suggestions for concrete steps i can take?
    In other words, do I e-mail this guy tomorrow and say:
    "I have registered for an MBA to start in Aug. But your offer is too good to turn away, I will postpone my MBA plans to join you.
    Are you serious about hiring me? If so when do I sign the dotted line and when do I start? "

    Or is there a better way of doing this?


     
  4. UnnamedPlayer

    UnnamedPlayer Senior member

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    Treat whatever he says as a lie.

    Plan your life accrodingly and if in three, six, nine, whatever months he says he has a job for you, and you want the job he has to offer, take it
    and go from there.
     
  5. michaelyork

    michaelyork Senior member

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    This is, of course, the sane and logical thing to do.

    It's just that, if in 3 of 6 months, I am 2 weeks (or 3 month, 2 weeks) into an MBA program, with $10,000 non-refundable deposit down the drain....and if he e-mails me with an offer, I have to turn it down. In other words, if I start the MBA, there is no turning back. It's the timing that matters. It's not an online or long-distance or some crappy MBA...this is a serious one, at a serious school, with serious debt involved. Of course the MBA will lead to much much much MUCH better career prospects, but I really don't want to do an MBA right now with the limited work experience I have. Nor do I want to take on the debt right now. However, I don't want to remain at my current job either, if I can help it.

    That's why I think I have no choice but to e-mail this guy, asking for a yes or no, with a firm deadline. Does that make sense to you? In other words, if he has a job to offer, he has until Aug 15 to do it. If afterwards, he is wasting his time and my time.

    SOrry I wasn't clear before. If anything, my communication skills need work to become clearer and more concise. I am not really nervous, nor am I as smart as the e-mail makes out. I didn't say a single interesting thing during the interview....he wouldn't shut up during the whole time.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2013
  6. Joffrey

    Joffrey Senior member

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    Sure, I'd politely tell him my MBA situation that you're excited about but that you would still prefer to work for a few years prior to enrolling (especially since you should be able to defer for a year or two). Tell him when you need to know but you understand the company/organization has it's own needs. Thank him for his candor. Chances are he won't be able/willing to meet your August deadline but at least you gave it a shot.
     
  7. VinnyMac

    VinnyMac Senior member

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    It's absolutely possible that the guy's trying to keep you as his back-up plan, but who cares? If you want the job, and there's a chance for you to get it, then who gives a crap if the manager thought that he was being slick?

    What you SHOULDN'T do is sit around, doing nothing to advance your situation, waiting for him to POSSIBLY call you. You should still be applying to schools and finding ways to get interviews for other positions that you're interested in. That way, 1) you won't be sitting around, doing nothing and 2) IF you get the offer, you won't feel desperate because you'll have other things going on.

    I'm not sure when all of these things took place. It would have been good to try to flush out some of the details immediately to figure out if you're even interested in what he was suggesting. Either way, you should probably contact him to find out the details of this "mystery job." What are the differences between it and the job that you interviewed for? That would be a major question to ask.

    I definitely wouldn't tell him that I'm willing to turn down graduate school (or anything else for that matter) to work with him. That will just make you seem desperate, and available. It's like being dumped and saying that you'll wait to give the person a chance to think it over. Besides, he hasn't "offered" you anything. In fact, he's gone out of his way to say that he may or may not make an offer I'd say "fxck it" and move on with my life. If he actually calls and you're still available, then great. If not, then you won't be counting on it anyway. Rather than waiting until August 15, why don't you use those 2.5 months to get more interviews?

    You CLEARLY aren't all in for a MBA, so I'd put that idea on the shelf for now. I know that a lot of people get MBA's because they're afraid to face the job market or they want a quick fix, but those people usually end up working the same types of shxtty jobs after graduation. It's definitely not a guarantee for a MUCH better career. A MBA with no experience and no direction is no better than a bachelor's degree.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2013
  8. JayJay

    JayJay Senior member

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    Listen to this guy, he makes a lot of sense. :teach:

    If he really wanted to hire you, he'd find a way to make it happen now. Who knows what the situation will be for him in Q3, it's a dynamic marketplace regardless of the industry. As he is moving forward, so should you.
     
  9. archibaldleach

    archibaldleach Senior member

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    As others have said, doing an MBA to avoid a bad job market is generally not a good plan. If you are planning to get an MBA anyways and see it as a part of your long-term plan, I think that going through with it isn't the worst thing, especially if it's a better option than your current job. That said, graduate school is not a panacea and you should proactively look for other opportunities. If they're serious about wanting to hire you in the future but haven't done so yet, they need to accept the risk that you may find a better opportunity and move on. You have no reason in your interactions with them to act like you don't believe them and the guy may be sincere, but all you know now is that you do not have a job offer from them and you need to move on for the time being. If something materializes in the future with this place, great. If not, be prepared for this possibility.

    May I ask what sort of school you are considering for an MBA (you said "serious" but that doesn't tell much)? If it's a top 10 school and you want the MBA eventually, it may be worth going in any event. If the school is not as good, getting more work experience and possibly retaking your GMAT for a better score (depending on what you got) is a better bet. Also, how much work experience do you have? If you have 2-3 years of experience pre-MBA and go to a good school, you should be able to get a decent job especially if you work your butt off during graduate school to make yourself a more complete candidate and do more than go to class and networking events.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2013
  10. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    a few thoughts

    1. he doesn't need to lie to you, he can tell you to fuck off

    2. don't give him an ultimatum. ask to meet him and tell him that you are thinking about an MBA and that you want to know what his situation is

    3. the friends that "know you" are full of shit.
     
  11. michaelyork

    michaelyork Senior member

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    Thanks everyone for your replies.

    Yesterday at 3pm EST, I e-mailed this to the guy:

    "Hope you're doing well.
    Thought I'd touch base to ask how are things going. I was wondering where things stood.

    Hope everything's good otherwise!
    Best

    Michael"

    He did, after all, invite me to keep in touch with him during the summer until middle to end of Q3.

    I have not received any reply yet.

    Yeah, the MBA is a top-5 school. I can't do any better on GMATs, scores don't go any higher . I'm not really asking for life or direction advice, though I appreciate the feedback. I want to avoid the MBA right now, strictly for financial reasons as I really don't want the debt now. Moreover, the MBA can easily be deferred. I really like this role, and I really liked this guy. He came across as trustworthy during the whole process, he also came across as bright and someone who can really mentor me. His interviews on Bloomberg and his published articles are all way above the usual gibberish level. That's why I'm troubling over this so much. If this was just another job, then I'd be delighted to tell him to fuck off "for dumping me in April". I'm not really nervous--I often do stupid things like that without regard for the consequences.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2013
  12. michaelyork

    michaelyork Senior member

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    In reply to my e-mail, he sent me this 72 hours later:

    Hey Michael,
    The new guy here is starting on Monday, and I have carte blanche to go build what I want. So I am still looking at starting a hunt for another associate around September. We may have one or two other analysts in here by then. Things are still on track, you are still front-of-mind for me.



    I don't think I trust this guy after all. On the phone in April, he told me very clearly "I am not going to go looking for another candidate, I'm bringing you in".
    Now, he's changed the tune to "I'm starting a hunt for another associate" and "you are still front-of-mind"...

    September is when the market will be flooded with new MBA grads desperate for jobs.

    Based on this e-mail, I think it's time for me to move on. Is that a fair assessment?
    Should I reply, or just forget it and move on?

    Any advice appreciated!
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2013
  13. archibaldleach

    archibaldleach Senior member

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    No reason to burn bridges or not keep corresponding with this guy. Simply thanking him for the update and letting him know you'll be in touch will suffice for now. If nothing comes of it, you've wasted a little bit of time but not too much. Other than in your correspondence with him, however, assume nothing will come of this and keep scouting out opportunities. This does look a bit less promising but things change quickly in the business world.
     
  14. Medwed

    Medwed Senior member

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    One thing I realised reading these e-mails. You are in for some sort of sales job in finance and you are talking to a guy who is professional bullsh...sorry salesman. The best thing to do when you encounter salesman is to give him the taste of his own bulsh.. sorry medicine. Treat him the way he treats you, feign enthusiasm and eagerness to come on board while working on other opportunities as if this one has never even existed.
     
  15. VinnyMac

    VinnyMac Senior member

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    +1 to this. I also have a feeling that OP's been interviewing for some type of low-level sales job. Personally, I wouldn't be so eager about that type of position.

    The last part of your post is good advice, and it's what I learned to do a long time ago. People like personality. Only on rare occasions do they ask hard-hitting questions. If you have stories and examples prepared, then personality will make you a serious candidate for most jobs.
     

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