I started to understand why it’s called job hunting. Really, it feels like trying to catch a wild animal – you have no idea where it’s hiding, but somehow you’re trying to find it and hunt it down. Or, you find it, it stands right in front of you, but then it sticks its tongue out and says “I don’t want you”. I endlessly scrolled through the websites where you can supposedly find a cheetah, I addressed the cheetah very nicely in my letter, calling him dear sir, but somehow I still couldn’t seem to catch the cheetah. Here’s a little story about my hunting adventure, where I was trying to catch a wild animal and ended up capturing a frog.
– 17th of september, tuesday, zwolle –
Finally, a cheetah responded to my application and invited me for an interview. I took the train to Zwolle, full of hopes and nerves, to meet the first cheetah. This particular cheetah was working in the educational system and looking for a content writer. The interview was very standard, asking all the questions you see when you ask google about the most asked interview questions. Original. To recover from meeting the scary cheetah, I went to drink craft beers in a former cloister with a friend. I didn’t know that vegetarian bitterballen can make you forget about cheetahs so easily.
– 18th of september, wednesday, the hague –
I was standing on a square in The Hague, mentally preparing to meet the second cheetah, when the first cheetah called. The first cheetah opened his mouth, stuck his tongue out and said “we don’t want to hire you”. I was disappointed about the no even if I wasn’t too excited about the actual job. I wanted to cry right there, but I pulled myself together. Cheetah number one told me that I presented myself well, but that someone else with a similar profile had come across more decisive. It was literally half an hour before meeting cheetah number two and my nerves multiplied by 3000.
The second cheetah, also looking for a content writer but this time for a communication agency, was very friendly. The interview was weird; after I introduced myself not a single question was asked about my experience or education. We just talked, almost philosophically, about many different topics. The cheetah told me about about how he smoked weed when he was younger and that he had spent a night in jail, which to me – correct me if I’m wrong – seemed somewhat strange for a job interview. Maybe it was a test? I was slightly confused, but remained neutral. The “interview” went well in my opinion and this seemed like a very nice place to work. Before I came there, the cheetah had already informed me that there were more experienced candidates and that it was not very likely that I would get the job. He was right – I heard a few days later that I didn’t get the job. However, he said that I made a very good impression and that it was a difficult decision.
After the interview, my boyfriend (who came with me to all the interviews which was really awesome) and I explored The Hague a bit, before taking the train to Gouda, where we spent the night. We went for a short walk in the evening and I fell in love with Gouda.
– 19th of september, thursday, gouda –
The third day in a row of cheetah-meeting. Again, a communication agency looking for a content writer, close to Gouda this time. I arrived at the cheetahs house, a very ugly one, and was brought to a big meeting room with a huge round table. The two cheetahs entered and left a chair empty between us, already not a nice feeling. The cheetahs asked me many questions – most of them I did not like and a few times their responses even seemed patronizing. The sector they were working in didn’t seem to suit me, something I could not read so clearly from the job description, and nothing about this interview made me feel good. I had a bad feeling with the actual work, with the company, with the place where the company was and also with the people who interviewed me. They never even got back to me about the job, something I think is very disrespectful – the least you can do is say “no thank you, we found someone else” – but since I definitely do not want to work there, I am not too bothered by it. It just confirmed the bad feeling I had in the first place.
After the shitty interview, I luckily got to enjoy a beautiful day in Gouda with my boyfriend. We tried many different cheeses and walked around the idyllic city centre. Since I like Gouda very much, it wasn’t a total waste of time to go on the interview.
The following week I was back to square one; cheetah one and two didn’t want me and I didn’t want cheetah number three. Again, I endlessly scrolled through the websites where you can supposedly find a cheetah, I addressed the cheetah very nicely in my letter, calling him dear sir…
– 1st of october, tuesday, groningen –
Things seemed to be going well again: cheetah four, five and six invited me for interviews. Cheetah number four was from my hometown, looking for a communication officer. I had a very good feeling at the cheetah’s home, everything seemed to fit and I thought the interview went well. Having done three interviews before made me feel more relaxed beforehand. I had the feeling I knew what was about to come and I felt like I was prepared. And apparently I was – the next day I got a call that I had the job! I haven’t signed the paper yet, but I don’t see why it should go wrong, as both parties seemed happy. I cancelled the interviews with cheetah five and six and jumped around the house repeating “I have a job, I have a job” all day.
While hunting for a cheetah, I ended up catching a frog. I had no idea I wanted a frog, but for now I am very happy about catching one of those rare animals.