Sunday, October 19, 2014

25 Stories About Work - "Don't Hang Up" and the Recruiter from Detroit

I was recently on a plane doodling and thought of some funny / interesting stories from 25+ years of working and traveling. So I decided to write them up as short, random chapters of a non-book with the title of this post. Hope you enjoy them and / or find them interesting. Certainly the value will be at least equal to the marginal cost of the book (zero)...

Champaign, early 1990's

As I graduated from college in the early 1990's, I went through the interview process on campus. About half the companies really liked me and about half the companies hated me. I guess I was a polarizing interviewee but who knows I had little idea about what to expect in an interview or how to behave. I do remember buying a suit with my mother for about $400 which seemed like an astonishing amount of money at the time.

In addition to the on campus recruiters, I also fielded some phone calls. Looking back before the age of cell phones it is amazing that anyone ever got in touch with anyone else - they must have called me in my dingy hellhole of an apartment in the 5 minutes that I happened to be there in between class, prepping for the CPA exam, and going out drinking. I guess we had an answering machine but I'm not even sure about that and my roommates at the time weren't exactly the most reliable.

I was enamored with the idea of work and getting the heck out of Champaign so I was like a happy puppy when anyone called. The joke is that I would select the last recruiter to call. One day I did receive a call: Hello. I'd like to talk to you about a job opportunity in the transportation industry, he said. I was interested. I was always interested. Then he said something I'll never forget.
The job is in Detroit. Don't hang up!
The recruiter combined both sentences into almost a single thought, with urgency, because he apparently was used to people instantly hanging up as soon as they heard the job opportunity was in Detroit.

I didn't hang up. But I surely did not pursue that opportunity. Because it was in Detroit, of course. No wonder that city went down the drain...

Cross posted at Chicago Boyz

1 comment:

creakypavillion said...

So now we know whom to blame!

My father still thinks I was wrong not seeking employment in Detroit as a die+stamping engineer...