I got an interview for a job I was really interested in. It sounded like a really interesting position that fit my skills well. The pay was good, benefits were great and it was in St. Paul. Pretty much everything I could ask for.
Twenty minutes after receiving the information about who I’d be interviewing with, I got a call. I couldn’t get to the phone, and I listened to the voicemail a few minutes later. It left me in shock.
Someone checked me out online in preparation for my interview and “found” my blog. I say that in quotes because I put the url right on my resume. I think it’s a good blog with a decent following and shows off my writing and social media skills. So I figured it could only help my case for the types of jobs I’m seeking.
But someone had a problem with the title.
The voicemail was from the HR person I’d been talking with. I bear no ill will toward as she had the courtesy to tell me the truth. She said, in a nutshell, that the position requires someone very detail-oriented so it probably wouldn’t be a good fit for me as a procrastinator and they didn’t want to interview me.
After about an hour of shock, I consulted with a couple of people and called the HR person back. She said it was very hard for her to call to cancel the interview but the position I was applying for is very public and requires a lot of project management. She said “perceptions matter” and that is why “the decision was made.” She said this perception problem wouldn’t keep me from being the right fit for other jobs in the organization, just this one. She encouraged me to apply should another position of interest to me open. But let’s be real, this was their first position fitting my skills in nine months so I doubt another is going to be popping up any time soon.
I’m still not sure how I feel about all this. Yes, I am a procrastinator. At home. I’ve always been very focused, organized and hard-working at work. I told her this and told her she could ask any former employers/coworkers. But it was clearly out of her hands. I don’t know whether it was just one person or more who thought the perception of me as a procrastinator would be a problem.
The part the bothers me most is that whoever it was that has the problem didn’t even read my blog. This is clear by the short time between confirming and canceling the interview, but I also know from my blog stats that nobody at that point had gone beyond the home page, which has posts about finding grocery deals, creating a proactive morning routine, organizing a closet, making mac and cheese from scratch. Clearly problematic, right?