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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

1st Job Interview: Expectations Vs Reality

Gary sends me to KTM station early in the morning, I take KTM to KL Sentral, take LRT to KLCC, walk to Megan Avenue II. Megan Avenue II looks like a large, empty shopping mall. DMF Technology (company name) is an office-like-shop inside the shopping mall. I walk and walk and find it. 
I peek into the office. White lighting. People walking around, some chatting, some doing their work. I visit the toilet and take a pee, apply my lip gloss, smoothen my hair and shirt, giving myself an utterly decent and professional appearance.
Then I go back to the office, knock on the glass door, and timidly push open the door. I tell the girl at the counter that I've come for an interview session. She invites me to sit down and wait as it's still half an hour before the interview starts. Then the interviewer comes, a middle-aged Chinese man. 
I answer all his questions with my well-memorized answers, laughing politely at the right places, and ask intelligent questions about the company. I tell him that my programming skills are really not bad, and I like programming. I have good logical thinking skills. I'm shy and I need time to warm up to people and have problems in making eye contact. He replies that you're doing very well now. I beam in happiness. I tell him that one of my (supposed) weaknesses are that I need clear instructions before starting on a task because I'm afraid of doing anything wrong. He replies that that's very good. I give a decent answer to the "why should we hire you" question. And finally asks him "are you willing to hire me". He smiles and says yes. I laugh happily and we sign offer letters. He introduces me to all the colleagues and we dine together. I take the LRT and KTM home.
- END -

I go to Gary's house for dinner one day before the interview. Gary's parents are shocked to hear that I'm going to an unknown company in an unfamiliar location all alone. Gary's parents insist on sending me all the way there and accompanying me right into the office, because they're worried of my safety (afraid of me being cheated and raped and so on). I try to reassure them that I'll be fine and I want to learn to be independent. They win the debate and I wonder when will I ever be able to repay them for everything they've done for me.
Gary's parents fetch me to KL. Traffic jam. We reach Megan Avenue II. Parking space for visitors is super far down. Then we go round and round the building trying to find the office. By the time we find it, it's ten minutes late for the interview. The office is dark, black and red seems to be its theme colors, has a gongxifacai banner along the top of the doorframe, and is VERY SMALL.
Presses the doorbell of the office. A smiling guy comes to open the door and asks me if I'm Mable. I say yes and apologize profusely for being late. He says it doesn't matter. Uncle and Aunty sits down and waits for me to finish my interview and fetch me back, instead of leaving right away. Guiltiness++++.
Smiling guy (the nice one who answered the phone two days ago and taught me exactly how to travel to KLCC and walk to the office) takes me to a table and gives me some forms to fill up. He says he didn't expect that I would bring my parents. I explain the situation to him and he is even more surprised. He tells me to tell UncleAunty to go downstairs and have a drink first or something, because this is going to take some time. They don't want to at first, but after about half an hour or so they change their minds. 
Ok, to come back to me. I ask smiling guy who is going to be interviewing me, and he says that it was originally a software engineer, but as she's in a meeting, he will replace her as interviewer, but still need to gain her approval for an official job offer. Then I apologize again for being late and ask “迟到有扣分吗?” then he says “没有啦。:D” I'm filling in the employee application form happily, quite many pages, when I come to the end of the page and notice Another piece of paper laying comfortably below. IT'S A TEST. WRITTEN TEST. I glance at smiling guy who's doing his work nearby. I look back at the test. It's a test for us to write out simple functions. In whichever programming language we want. Should be easy. 
Then I realize that I've forgotten ALL THE BASIC FUNCTIONS that I've ever learnt. No choice. Have to invent my own code and go the roundabout way, write n lines of code when probably only 5 lines are needed. After about half an hour of me scrunching up my face, squeezing my eyes shut trying to squeeze some logic out, and glancing around for some inspiration, I accidentally drop my pen on the table and smiling guy turns around.
"Finished liao ar? ^_^ " he says.  Oh btw all our conversations were totally in Mandarin. 
"No," I reply wearily. 
"It's all very basic stuff la," says he. 
"I know, but I've somehow forgotten everything," says the reckless me, brain totally emptied of my carefully categorized 'What To Say' and 'What Not To Say'. "Can I use Google?"
"Hahaha that's considered as 出猫 la," says smiling guy. "If cannot do then just leave it blank la, really never mind de."
"NO NO NO I can do it, just give me some more time," I plead, and proceed to struggle with the really basic functions.
Finally I finish. Smiling guy comes over and looks through the paper. "Wah, not bad ma, can finish leh, correct somemore."
"What? Correct meh? 2nd question confirm wrong I tell you," says someone who's so stressed over the test, that she isn't bothering to filter her thoughts.
"No la that one was just to test whether you are willing to complete it or not, some people just give up on the spot." And I was like :O okay. Then we had a conversation but I don't remember what we said. I just remember that it was so normal that I totally forgot that I was going to be interviewed. Something like him telling me that there are a few interns leaving in July so they're in quite a rush to find new interns now, and him asking me about my internship period, and saying that usually other students are 6 months one (while mine is just 4), then I told him that I really don't mind as long as they hire me (wtf desperado over here), and he said “真的吗等下耽误到你毕业” and me saying "nvm毕业不重要” and so on. 
“Oh ok... ermmmm...”
Thirty seconds fly past as I struggle to capture fragments of my carefully prepared answer script to the Tell Me About Yourself question.
“那就没有问题了咯。。然后我在你们的网站那边看到你们有做那个biometric device的hor那个我不会咧。”
“嗯,还有crystal report~" 
“嗯好好 ^_^”
30秒后。。。“我可以看笔记吗,我真的忘记了。。。"((其实我有记得其中一个是说我的Logical thinking skills还不错,然后i'm able to meet deadlines。。。可是after刚才那个笔试我到底还有什么资格讲出这种话?
“没有啦没有啦~ ”
“这里的老板是哪个?” ((快速转移话题
“应该不会啦 :) ”
“我看到那个工作内容,intern真的是会接触到整个SDLC(software development lifecycle)的吗?”
以此类推。。。。我后来继续像机关枪似的问了一大堆有的没的的问题。。。关于公司网站上面的资料的,关于公司的,关于工作内容的。。== 变成好像我在interview他了。。。然后那个tell me about yourself 如我所愿完全被遗忘掉了。说真的如果要我跟他讲我的biggest weakness是Shy的话,那个时候的我真的没有脸说出口。。。interview那时候的我只能用两个字形容:三八。原本准备了3-4个很有水准的问题,结果问了至少50个各种各类的问题,而且重点是我问问题的pattern一点都不是一个professional interview candidate应该有的,比较像是一个小孩对某件事情很好奇然后一直有问不完的问题。。。
没错每当电话响一次然后他跟我说“等一下啊”的时候(电话响了好几次),我都会隐约的觉得我自己很啰嗦,aunty uncle还在楼下喝着茶等着我,smiling guy应该也很忙,是时候结束这场非常不正式的interview了。。可是每次他讲完电话后回来都会跟我讲一些新的内容然后我又有新的问题。。。
总之,到最后,他一直跟我讲“我觉得你应该ok的啦,没有问题,我等那个software engineer回来跟她讲,她同意了就ok了的”,然后我一直很怕他只是想当好人不想毁掉公司的形象。
然后踏出公司的门的时候我就找不到电梯,原来电梯就在门旁边(我哪记得),然后他就跟我说“你真的hmm...还蛮年轻的。。。像你这样真的很容易被人家骗走,还好你遇到的是我们不是什么坏人,以后出去真的要小心一点。”(p/s: 他所谓的“年轻”可以直接被翻译成幼稚。)

然后Interview就结束了。然后他刚才就打电话来说有好消息就是那个Software engineer刚开完会回来然后决定收我了。然后他跟我说可以不要急着接受这个Job offer先,可以先try下别的公司,不然以后后悔就来不及了。可是最迟月尾要给答复。

然后我现在还在想明天应不应该去OCBC Bank的 interview然后尝试下一个超正式的 interview的滋味。可是我真的不想。而且也并没有打算去那边工作。可是又怕后悔!

然后那个DMF虽然那个interviewer他人真的很好,可是如果连我这种人都收的话,他们应该真的缺人缺到一种危险的地步吧。。。难以想象以后自己也会变成那种忙到没有时间说话的样子(应该2天后就要住院了吧,我刚才回到来就直接夏眠到凌晨两点多了)。。。然后我在jobstreet看的时候,8 applicants for this position (10 internship positions),while其他公司都有十多个到四十多个applicants在争5个internship positions。。。。


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