In Your Face!

It was just a little before 3 PM when my 4 o’clock appointment walked into the lobby of our training center where we were holding interviews. She was a lot taller, a lot bigger, and a lot different than the person I perceived from the photo on her resume. But I wasn’t wrong about her being direct, although I didn’t expect her to be opinionated, as I would later discover.

She refused my offer for a drink, and directly got to work to fill out the application form. Expecting her to be Action-Intelligence in her approach to communication and to be a Dominant in her personality, I carefully planned my opening for the interview.

As soon as she completed the form, I began by complimenting her on the way she meticulously structured her resumé. She responded with a sheepish grin and a polite disbelief.
“No, it’s not that good, really.” She said with a pleased smile.
“It is still a lot better than most resumés that I have read the last couple of days,” I insisted.

We continued to talk about her past accomplishments. She turned out to be more open and less dominant than I expected. The conversation went well, and we finally reached the end of my part to ask the questions.

“Now it’s your turn to interview me,” I said, giving her the rein for the rest of the discussion.
“I only have one questions,” she said. “I noticed that you have put out an ad for this position several times. Why do you think the past people did not last long in this job?”

I knew she would not buy any BS, so the best course of action would be to be directly and brutally honest.

“The last person did her job excellently. She had good initiatives, she took actions, but because she failed to build rapport, she got bad responses from the rest of the team.”
“Everybody hated her?”
“No, just some people. But they were the loudest lot. I should have given her more support. I should have sent her to a training program so she could cope better with the situation. At the end of the day, I guess it was my fault. Yes, I was so busy, but that is not an excuse for failing to support her.”
“How long have you worked here?” she asked.
“Thirtheen years.”
“You own part of the company?”
“I do.”
“Then you’re right. It was your fault. You should have shown her more support.”
I must have shown some sort of a shocked expression because she was quick to explain her opinion.”
“You know this in this job, the person is sandwhiched between employees and management. As soon as the pressure is too strong, one will be quick to find an opening in another place.”
“Yeah, you’re right,” I admitted.

I already suspected that she would be the kind of person with a nothing-to-lose attitude. I guessed as much that she would say whatever in her mind, regardless of what other people would think. And I must say, I admire her guts.

What I shared with her was something that had been simmering on my mind for a long time. I have never talked about it with anyone before. It took a nonchalant stranger to get it out of my system. Instead of a job interview, the meeting had become a confession.

I know I could use someone like that in the organization. Can the rest of the company accept her?

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