Happy Friday Beanies! I’ve been job hunting for a while, and I had one of the strangest interview experiences last week with a publisher. I had some reservations about the content they publish, but I thought it was only fair to give myself and them a chance by learning more through the interview.

I applied on Monday, and on Tuesday the publishing manager emailed me to invite me for an interview on Thursday at 4pm. He didn’t even ask if I was even available, which I wasn’t. After some back and forth, we settled on another date, and he tells me to bring this application form and “documents”, which again he failed to specify. He didn’t confirm the location of the interview either, so I had to email back to clarify both.

Then I open up this application form, and it asks for an array of personal details including religion, marital status, and even my family members’ names and occupations. (Employers asking for the first two details are not outlawed in Singapore, but usually you are not required to provide it until after you accept a job offer.)

So I fill out all the necessary fields minus those fields, and go for this interview. The interviewer had one of those crushing handshakes, and he asked me a bunch of questions about my voluntary editorial work with a K-pop site, which I do weekly.

After this, he pauses, and asks, “So this is what you’ve been doing the past three years?” I confirmed this, thinking it was an odd way to phrase it, since it was more of a side hobby. And he says, “I’m sorry, but I have to ask, why didn’t you choose to take on a full-time position?” He didn’t realise I was doing a full-time Master’s programme, even though that info was right at the top of my resume! He even exclaimed, “Oh! It says 2018 (year of completion) here!” Needless to say, that was the final nail on the coffin.

The lesson of the week was, even if I am 4 going on 5 months into this job search and feeling slightly desperate, there are just some jobs that are just not worth the opportunity cost, or the sacrifice in my emotional well-being. I’d much rather take another month finding a job with more careful superiors than accept the offer immediately, only to waste a year or so in a horrible workplace.


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