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Thread: Interview Vibes

  1. #1
    mustlovedogs
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    Interview Vibes

    Hello, eNA! I have posted a few times about my career search - thank you all for the help! I've been having a lot more luck lately and have four follow-up interviews next week. YAY! Additionally, I was told I'm going to get an offer for a role I discovered I'm not very interested in. But, all in all, things are looking up.

    Here's my question: I had a phone interview last week with a small company (i.e., I'd be employee 2) and the whole thing has me nervous. During the interview he mentioned how he recently fired an employee but he didn't want to talk about it. Ok, that's fair. But then he gave me a fairly extensive assignment: research a potential project he's working on and prepare an in-depth research report detailing the engineering, supply chain, manufacturing, and operational considerations. This would include working with a small company's BOD, interviewing subject matter experts, researching current industry technology, identifying gaps in tech, proposing other applications, etc. I sincerely think this could take 10-15 hours at a minimum.

    Now, I understand it takes work to find a job. But I'm concerned about this guy's expectations of his employees. It feels like an awful lot for a candidate to do. Not to mention, if I don't reply to one of his emails within 4 or so hours, he sends another one. I had to tell him I'm busy interviewing (which I am!). But I'm concerned he expects his employees to be at his beck and call, all the time.

    Sooooo. My question: given I have 4 other very promising options, is it appropriate to back out of this process? If yes, how do I do this gracefully without burning a bridge?

  2. #2
    RainyCoast
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    so basically, do the work that is part of his project? sounds like he's trying to get someone to do his work for him for free.

    does he intend to publish his findings? would you be credited?

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  4. #3
    mustlovedogs
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    Quote Originally Posted by RainyCoast [Register to see the link]
    so basically, do the work that is part of his project? sounds like he's trying to get someone to do his work for him for free.

    does he intend to publish his findings? would you be credited?
    ^ exactly my thoughts. No publishing, but this is venture capital, so he would use it as a basis to either value a company or pitch a proposal to a company, or something. But yes, he basically wants me to evaluate a potential project he's working on.

  5. #4
    j.man
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    "Small company" with one employee. Ask for his EIN. Guarantee you never hear from him again. Never mind the other shady **** and unprofessionalism ("I fired someone. Don't wanna talk about it").

    Honestly sounds like an oDesk scam. Don't do his work for free. Forego the extortion and stick with your other three follow-ups.

  6. #5
    RainyCoast
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    During the interview he mentioned how he recently fired an employee but he didn't want to talk about it.
    what do you think that was about? intimidation of sorts...?

    he said he fired someone, you went "how so'", he went i don't wanna taco bout it...?

    so fishy.

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    mustlovedogs
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    Phew ok fantastic. I'm glad the consensus is it's a little weird.

    I don't want to seem ungrateful for the opportunity - but the whole thing is strange.

  9. #7
    j.man
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    Quote Originally Posted by mustlovedogs [Register to see the link]
    Phew ok fantastic. I'm glad the consensus is it's a little weird.

    I don't want to seem ungrateful for the opportunity - but the whole thing is strange.
    On the extreme off chance he's got a connection or two in the field, don't do what I'd do, which would be to send a PDF of my morning dump.

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    mustlovedogs
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    Quote Originally Posted by j.man [Register to see the link]
    On the extreme off chance he's got a connection or two in the field, don't do what I'd do, which would be to send a PDF of my morning dump.
    Hahaha. I like it.

    Ok. I'm thinking of sending an email tomorrow saying something about I am busy interviewing, don't have the time to dedicate to this project, appreciate the opportunity, etc etc, but it's best if I remove myself from the process. Is that reasonable?

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  13. #9
    j.man
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    Quote Originally Posted by mustlovedogs [Register to see the link]
    Hahaha. I like it.

    Ok. I'm thinking of sending an email tomorrow saying something about I am busy interviewing, don't have the time to dedicate to this project, appreciate the opportunity, etc etc, but it's best if I remove myself from the process. Is that reasonable?
    Beyond so. I honestly wouldn't even bother corresponding to convey that much.

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  15. #10
    Batya33
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    I would not take the bait either -it sounds off/weird. Sure, giving in a writing sample is one thing but doing actual work, unpaid -nope.

    Good luck on your follow up interviews!

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