I’m having trouble as far as trying to come up with a follow-up post to the shoot from earlier this month. Then I realized let me expose an “easter egg” for you. I showed a few scenes of grocery stores on my instagram page within the past two months and one of those scenes are actually of a store that I had interview with in 2014 during the streak era.
The store in question I had an interview with during the Streak Era was with a company I call Finer Foods which does represent a real life company owned by a major corporation and it was located not too far away from downtown. It was a bit closer to home than the store the Fiend wanted me to come work for and they were looking to hire people as it was a new store that had yet to open.
To give you a basic timeline. In January or perhaps earlier in February 2014, Anthony had sent me a text asking if I wanted to work for Finer’s. I reply, Yes. He said I should be hearing from someone and I do, however, around the same time Finer’s corporate offices came calling. This was one that the ball was dropped I will admit because the acceptable option back then for yours truly was a shorter commute which meant the location closer to downtown.
As with other interviews during that period of time I had to take some steps before receiving a job offer unfortunately there is hardly any guarantee. That period is called the streak era because I went through a number of interviews until October 2014 and failed consistently to get a job offer. So this interview was the seventh of about fifteen interviews and the count would be zero and seven.
I had to go through a phone screen successfully and then had to do an in person interview. I had to change trains and then walk a bit to get to a hiring center which either used to be a daycare center or a hair salon. The people doing the interviewing were wearing uniforms consistent with Finer’s which was in those days a white shirt, black pants with a black necktie.
I hardly talk about interviews however it wasn’t long before this interview that I learned it was a bust. I just couldn’t read the interviewer and while I kept up my optimism it wasn’t going the way I hoped it would. Perhaps I tried to hard to show that hiring me was a good choice and hopefully move up the chain if you will. The interviewer wasn’t showing enough enthusiasm and had no reason to believe she was going to offer me a position.
So I didn’t leave in great spirits although I did “hope” for a phone call. Worse still she suggested not the store I was originally told by someone in the corporate offices over the phone, she mentioned yet another store on the north side of town which seemed like a much better commute than going to the northwest side of Chicago.
Another thing that threw me off about this interview, I forget what questions I asked – and it probably wasn’t very good anyway – but her answer was to tell me that she never worked or doesn’t work for a store. She probably was an HR person as I can only imagine those are the only ones whom a company would trust to make hiring decisions. One question she asked me threw me off and wasn’t sure how to answer “What frustrates you?” To answer that in the context of a job without talking about all of your life’s frustrations is not exactly a very easy task. I don’t remember my answer all I can say is that one can only do the best they can with that question.
It’s almost like being asked about your tardiness or just general attendance. I feel like once that’s on a manager’s radar and while it’s an easy fix you can’t win with that question.
Anyway at some point after that I reached out to Anthony regarding his contact the one who had called me. I only ask if she was at work on that day, he only answers NO. Though I made the assumption that he washed his hands of it and decided that one word answer was as sign that I was being blown off. Just decided it was OK for me to pursue those opportunities I really want.
Of course as time went on into the next month I get bombarded by single-minded texts and missed phone calls by Anthony with primarily one question, “What’s going on with Finer Foods?” As things just slow to a crawl again with no potential prospects coming along I break down and give Anthony a call thinking he has some connections I can use to leave The Show. He characterizes me blowing off his store for a soon to open store for his company as “putting all your eggs in one basket”. Meanwhile as you might have figure he later tries to have me put all my “eggs into his basket” and pursue the opportunity he had set up for me. Well consider that a move that didn’t work the way he nor yours truly wanted it to.
Last month for the first time I ever I paid a visit to that store. Nothing remarkable about it I figured quickly it had the same layout as the previous tenants. Unlike Fresh Foods in the same situation Finer’s didn’t take a significant time to design & build out their spaces. I came looking for some typical items to purchase. And it was an interesting visit, one can only wonder what would’ve been had it worked out back then.
I heard so many negative things about Finer’s as a company that I find myself wondering if working there would’ve worked out for me in the long run. At this point who knows, I feel as if it took a few months after this at least into 2015 to find a move that in the long run worked out best for me.
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