When interviewing for a job, it's really important to know what you're getting into. Are you going to get into a job where you are really enjoying the quality of life you retain while working there? Or will you be selling your soul away?
The thing is--we can pick up signals from our initial interviews about exactly what we are getting into. The signs may be hidden or buried beneath some layers of weirdness, but if you're looking, you will see exactly what the work environment will be like during your interview.
Here were some of those answers.
Putting Us All On The Spot
On a second interview the general manager brought me into the conference room with his 8 managers present. At first I thought it was a meet and greet but no, they grilled me for an hour and a half. Didn't appreciate that along with a couple other things and politely withdrew from being considered.
Couple months later I'm playing in a ball tournament and come across one of the managers. I mentioned how weird that interview was. He says 'Weird for you? Ha! I found out then and there you were being interviewed for my job!'.
Yep, dodged a bullet there.
Lying For Clout
I was once part of a group onboarding for an IT job. They handed us all the one-page new hire "contract" and everyone except me signed immediately. When I read the paperwork, I discovered we were signing a mystery document. Clauses included "I agree to abide by the personal search and seizure security policy (attached)." Without other pages, there was no way to determine what I was agreeing to. I kept requesting more and more pages until the HR drone said "ok, I guess [me] is just determined to hold everyone up. We will handle you separately if you're struggling so much."
After I walked out and drove home, I called the hiring manager to apologize for not taking the job. He informed me that HR reported I had walked out after refusing to be drug tested.
I'll Never Come Back From Lunch
Last job I worked.
"Yea, everyone here is new, but it's totally because of covid"
"The boss doesn't like people going out to get lunch because they're afraid you'll never come back, so being your own lunch"
"You'll get weird looks if you leave on time". It was a chinese owned company with heavy chinese work culture influence so you were expected to stay overtime all week.
Also "the people here are nice but it's pretty stressful".
Once an interviewer straight up asked me if I had any trouble working for free on weekends... I told them my free time is more valuable than anything and that the only way that I would work a weekend is if they are paying me and if I felt like working a weekend.
She got really mad at me and ended the interview right away.
Biggest red flag I've ever seen because they didn't even try to hide it.
Actually I Do Need To Read This
When you are signing all the forms they give you and you are taking your time to read over every document so that you can fully understand what you are getting into and people come in and start telling you that you don't need to read this and that just sign here and so on.
Finding Out The Going Rate
I interviewed for an independent contractor position on a piece rate. It's hard to predict how much you're going to earn on a piece rate, so to attract me the manager showed me some paystubs from his guys. I noticed that:
- He could easily cherry pick paystubs to show my his best guys best weeks. All that tells me is that I'm likely to make less than what he's showing me, at least on average.
- The paystubs were obviously designed to be confusing. They were a full page and absolutely covered in data. He wanted me to be impressed by a dollar amount (obviously not accounting for costs which the contractor has to carry or taxes which the contractor has to deduct and pay) but he took them away before anyone could have deciphered what the pay period, piece rate, number of jobs or kms was.
- He showed me other people paystubs! wtf??
Another red flag is that they were desperate to hire, because they didn't have enough contractors to deliver the work contracts they'd already sold. I had two guys from different offices call me after I'd declined the position who apparently still thought I was considering it.
A Terrible Boss
At my last place of work, the person interviewing me had a printed cartoon on their wall of someone who looked like a bomb had blown up in their face, with the caption "I spoke with 'boss' name' about it.. I guess we're still doing it".
That wasn't subtle at all, but I ignored it. The boss was an absolute tyrant who wouldn't listen to her staff, consider changing her mind about anything, or let people do the work they were best suited to do. She wouldn't show up for weeks at a time. The job itself was decent, but she was the worst boss I've ever had.
How Many Peoples' Jobs Am I Doing
Jobs where the expectations of the position aren't clear. The person hiring you should be able to give a clear idea of your responsibilities are day to day in a practical way. It shows that the company understands what it wants out of the position.
I've worked a couple positions that had a really hard time figuring out who was supposed to do what that lead to a lot of confusion and both of them had this in the interviews. If the company you're working for can't define what success in that position looks like you won't be able to either.
You Just Decided Not To Show??????
I once showed up for an interview and the manager wasn't there that day. No one called me to let me know.
The assistant manager was not apologetic for the scheduling issue at all. She was literally just like "oh, she's not here today" in a tone that suggested I should somehow already know that. She said they would call me to reschedule some time the next week. I told her I was currently unavailable M-W but could come in any time Th-F. She said if I couldn't make time for the interview, I probably wouldn't be a good fit.
I said okay, and went on to my other interviews and ending up working elsewhere.
You'd think that would be the end of it, but both the manager and the assistant manager badmouthed me to a few other people in the industry, including one of my friends.
Hello? I made time for an interview. You disrespected me by not calling me to let me know it was canceled. I gave you the times I was available to reschedule, and that was disrespectful somehow?
If you can see the floor before the interview, you can sometimes get a vibe about the place. I once went to interview for a sales position. Aside from the interviewer being 30 mins late, it did allow me to sit and observe the situation. I realized pretty quickly this was not going to be the place for me. Very quiet except a handful of people on the phones cold calling.
Many reps trying to push for contacts on the other end, just painful to listen to. And when they'd hang up there wasn't really any interaction with co workers. Just quiet, and then another call. It all seemed very tense. I noped out of their real quick after the five minutes the interview took. Dodged a bullet.
I had interviewed for a call center job at another place that's as a complete 180 from that. Yes it's a call center job so it is what it is, but there was laughter on the floor, people talking to floor managers, just a completely different vibe that was more inviting.
The best question to ask
My current boss gave me a great tip on the last interview I had. He said "Ask them if you can pick an employee to chat with about how they like the position you're applying for. They'll give a better impression of the place than management".
I got the job I was interviewing for. I turned it down because the above is the kind of management I want to keep in my life. Also the place undercut my pay offer I found out which is certainly also a red flag
Location location location
When you ask, "what do you like about working here" and the interviewer talks about the location of the job ("it's a great place to live!") instead of the actual job.
I was once told "Sometimes the hourly workers go on strike and they lock us in to keep the production line running, but management brings us steaks and we have an informal agreement with the unions so you can cross the picket lines once a week to visit your wife."
Employees are either new hires or have been there for 15+ years with no in-between. There is no room for improvement - it's better to leave for advancement.
I brought up a company's awful Glassdoor reviews and they got so mad they ended the interview. Well. Guess I dodged that bullet
I've done this a few times during interviews. I've gotten the same responses and it has never been addressed professionally. Even when companies have stellar reviews, I like to ask about their online reviews. It shows me their reactions to stressful situations. I also figure they're looking at everyone's LinkedIn or whatever, so if they judge me by my online presence, I don't see why I can't do that to them.
"We don't like 'clockwatchers' here. We expect everyone to be committed." Expecting more work for no extra pay. Getting mad at you when you leave at 5 even though your stated work hours end a 5
In movies and TV, a character who is portrayed as highly intellectual has visible signifiers.
In real life, however, a person with a high IQ is not as easily identified by common Hollywood stereotypes of smart people.
"What is a subtle sign that someone is really intelligent?"
The minds of really smart individuals never stop working.
"They draw wisdom from multiple sources. Wait but that might be more wise than intelligent... But I guess those two tend to be seen together a lot."
"They are curious about everything."
"To be intelligent you need to be knowledgeable and you cant be knowledgeable if you are never curious."
The way highly intelligent people interact with others is slightly different.
"They can switch up the way they talk to match the person they're talking to without sounding condescending. They listen to how others learn and explain it in that person's language of understanding."
Talking On Level Ground
"Talking to people as if they're intelligent at their level and without being condescending or even letting on that it's lower than their level."
"I used to work with a doctor - Tom Howard - and the day I realized he was a genius was the time he guessed every single condition a patient of mine had based on minute piece of information about him."
The Humble Professor
"No joke. The smartest professor I had in engineering school was also the most humble. She was an astounding human being. By week 2, she knew everyone's names by heart in the intro engineering course. In College. With like 180 students. Later, in upper division classes, people would occasionally ask some really stupid questions."
"Like, it happens... you get so deep into some fluid mechanics derivation or something you forget something really basic. People would ask a question like this and everyone would be thinking like; 'Wow, how did you even make it this far?' but then... it's like she would spot the flaw in their understanding so perfectly, and then respond with such clarity and wisdom that the person asking the question would look less stupid and the whole class would be enlightened."
"And here's the thing... I pride myself on being really good at that exact skill. I tutored a lot of people. I was easily one of the brightest amongst my peers. But that woman was on another level. It was mind-blowing."
"And it wasn't just her intelligence, but her organizational skills, discipline, consistency.... And yet... she was so humble. She was quiet and physically quite small. But she just exuded competence and immediately commanded every room she walked into. I've never seen anything quite like it."
A Positive Effect
"When they explain something they make you feel intelligent."
When In Doubt
"They know when their knowledge ends and say something to the extent of 'I don't know and anything else i say on this topic is ignorant speculation.'"
Some with impressive IQs may deal with questions in the following ways.
Reaction To Delayed Responses
"'You really think about everything don't you?' - a doctor, to me, after he asked me a question and I took longer than 2 seconds to answer it."
"No, I just pull something out of my @ss every time and those extra seconds you waited for me to answer were purely to irritate you for my own enjoyment."
The Really Good Questions
"They can ask really good questions."
"Edit: to anyone not understanding what mean, I’m talking about people who ask 'really good questions,' not just any questions, really good ones. I don’t know how one would achieve this skill(I know I haven’t)."
"They spend time thinking before asking a question."
"Some of the smartest people don’t comment at all."
I agree with many of the comments saying a really intelligent person knows how to cater the conversation towards another person's level of understanding.
They do have the impressive skill to convey something in a way that can easily be understood. Some of the most venerated professors at my university were like this, and their classes were always the hardest to get in to.
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There are roughly 7 billion people on earth so being the top 1% of anything sounds like it might be an incredible honor.
Maybe you've received an award or a certification that only a few people have gotten. Or maybe you have a rare disease, which doesn't sound as fun.
We went to Ask Reddit to find the people who are in a top 1% of people.
Redditor I_Love_Small_Breasts asked:
"What are you in the 1% of?"
Here's some of the rare groups people are apart of or things they experience.
Could be totally great or totally inconvenient.
"If I shake my head in a certain way, I can give myself an orgasm. Never met anyone who can do that."
"Wow that sounds incredibly inconvenient."
"'Shaking my head' has a whole new meaning now. Damn."
Survived a flesh eating bacteria.
"Survived flesh eating bacteria in the bloodstream after sepsis. Most people die within 3 days."
"Had MRSA and sepsis because of an open wound on my left foot. Thing is a nurse was treating the wound with Santyl and it was fully bandaged at all times. The nurse changed the dressings 3 times a week but I still ended up in the hospital with antibiotics IV'd into each arm plus oral antibiotics. Spent 15 days in ICU having all my organs sonogramed for signs of the infection spreading. X-rays and MRI's to check for bone infections and when they released me I had to wear a wound vac pump for 2 months to seal the wound on my foot."
"I can stop my hiccups on command."
"There’s a superpower for sure."
This is way less than 1%
"I am one of only 1300 board certified Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners for the adult and adolescent population. In the world."
"I'm unsettled by how small that number is."
"To be fair, there are more SANE nurses, meaning nurses who take care of these patients and are qualified to do so. Being board certified just means I took an extra step after I reached a qualifying time to take a test to prove it. I’m actually up for renewal. At the time I first tested, I was one of something like 1100."
"Still, even knowing that, there aren’t enough SANEs or FNEs overall."
"I’m naturally ambidextrous. Apparently that’s something only 1% of people naturally are. I can use both right and left hands ably for any task. For example, I often switch which hand I write with based on how I’m sitting."
"It’s worth noting natural ambidexterity is not the same as learned or acquired ambidexterity. For example, left handed people often have to use things designed for right handed people but otherwise are left handed."
"I’m of the .002% of people with osteopoikilosis. This freaked the sh*t out of me because when I was diagnosed the first thing the doctor said was 'wow I’ve never seen this in anything but textbooks before.'"
"Basically, I have bones growing inside my bones. It’s not anything I should be worried about, at least for a while, so that’s nice."
How many people can say this?
"I've represented my country in the Paralympic games."
"That’s a really nice one! Which specialty?"
"Volleyball for Great Britain in the 1996 games in Atlanta."
"Not me but my dad."
"He was born with a backwards heart and didn’t find out till his heart attack a few years ago and it actually saved his life."
"His doctor later told him that after being a doctor for over 30 years he’d never seen someone with a backwards heart and that apparently 1% of people on the planet have it."
"I am diagnosed with Visual snow syndrome. Basically seeing through static. It may not be rare as thought but I am one of very few people to be formally diagnosed."
"Same! I figured it out when people didn’t see the static and I heard it mentioned! Used to think I was seeing molecules when I was a little kid haha."
HIV resistant gene mutation.
"I have a double gene mutation that makes me highly resistant or even immune to the HIV virus."
"Can doctors use your blood to help those with HIV?"
"I have the same mutation and I've donated samples towards research. I got an email last year about vaccine hopes but I'm not sure where it went."
There are some incredible people out there in the world, and thankfully the internet is bringing them all together.
It's fascinating to see how diverse humans really are.
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How you approach life's many trials and tribulations can say a lot about who you are. However, many of us don't necessarily learn some lessons so easily.
Life is complicated. It's messy. Few, if any things, go according to plan. On top of that, sometimes the way we handle our relationships or our obligations might not be the most healthy one.
You live, you learn... or so the saying goes.
People shared their stories after Redditor ryanblumenow asked the online community,
"What did you learn at great personal cost?"
"I broke three..."
"Never trust a ladder set up by someone else. I broke three of my lumbar vertebrae. Thankfully I recovered fully, but damn was that scary. I also bit through my lower lip. I have a nice scar as a memento."
This is terrifying. Glad you're still alive–that you healed is miraculous!
"Even if you work your hardest..."
"Even if you work your hardest, do everything right, and are a great employee… you may still be seen as expendable."
This is true. Your company will never be loyal to you. Don't bend over backwards. Do your job–don't sell your soul.
"That you need to be careful..."
"That you need to be careful what you put up with as it teaches people how to treat you. I lost a lot of 'friends' once I started to set boundaries."
This is very true. I can relate: I definitely lost a few so-called "friends" the second I began standing up for myself.
"This goes for all relationships..."
"Don't listen to what people say, but what they do. This goes for all relationships, both professional and personal."
Amen to that. It's a cliche, but actions absolutely do speak louder than words.
"Family can be just as toxic..."
"Family can be just as toxic for you as anyone else. Sometimes it's best to cut them out."
Ain't that the truth.
Are we trading toxic family stories now?
"If someone gets upset..."
"If someone gets upset at you for trying to establish boundaries with them, it's not you being mean or unreasonable, it's them not caring about your happiness."
This is spot on. Don't trust people who violate your boundaries. Your gut won't lie to you, not about this.
"You can't convince them."
"You cannot, even subtly, force someone to love you. You can't convince them. They either do or they don't, and it's on you to decide what to do with that unchangeable position in mind."
I feel like many people go through their 20s without learning this.
Not that I know anything about this... or anything like that.
"Just because you try to be a good friend..."
"That people aren't always your friend. Gaslighting is real. Just because you try to be a good person doesn't mean good things will happen to you."
Very true. Be very careful about what you put out there. Not everyone has good intentions, though this is not in anyway meant to imply that the world is terrible.
It isn't. Just be judicious.
"You can accomplish..."
"You can accomplish anything you set your mind to. Doesn't mean you should. Everything will cost more than you anticipate in ways you can't imagine."
That's a poetic way to put it! Spot on. Everything costs something, even your success.
"That you don't have to run off and get married. A marriage that only lasted one year cost me more than $10K. Life is not a race and you don't need to be married by a certain point or at all for that matter."
"Be patient, make yourself available, gravitate to those who understand you the most."
Awful. It sounds like you have peace of mind now, however, which is priceless.
Don't be so hard on yourself, by the way. We all learn at our own pace.
Here's a tip before we go: Your education is never complete. Life always something to teach you, so just accept it, be open to it, and go in grace.
Have some suggestions of your own? Feel free to tell us more in the comments below!
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Is there anyone who loved high school?
High school is a disaster. That is true for like... 95% of us.
it's like being branded. "I survived high school because of this!!"
The past is never really past, is it? What did you see?
Redditor HelloProxima wanted to go back and visit the teenage years, by asking:
"What is the most f**ked up thing that happened in your high school?"
I'm on the fence about high school. I want to hate it, but nostalgia haunts me. I saw a lot of violence, there is that.
We were on CNN.don lemon nodding GIF by Red Table TalkGiphy
"They started charging us for ketchup in the cafeteria. Most of the school boycotted cafeteria lunch and brought all manner of condiments from home. We were on CNN. They eventually caved." ~ Ash3Monti
No one liked him.
"I was big into drama club and musical theatre when I was in high school. There was a girl in the drama club in her freshmen or sophomore year who was super nice and everyone loved her. Her older brother on the the other hand, was a complete and total douchebag. No one liked him."
"He always made inappropriate comments or jokes and no one liked to be around him. One night, he was driving him and his sister back from school when he took a steep curve going around 100 mph. He lost control and hit a telephone pole. His sister died instantly and he was in a coma for a few weeks but ultimately survived."
"Myself and my friends in the drama club were devastated. She was one of the sweetest girls you'll ever met and we all loved her. A year or two later, the brother messages my sister and tries to use his sister's death as leverage to get laid. F**k you, you piece of crap." ~ FearTheKeflex
"Guidance counselor was taking bribes to change grades (Both money and sexual favors). Invited one male student over to his house. Had the student tie him up and hang him by chains in his basement "dungeon." Student was homophobic and while the counselor was tied up, bludgeoned him to death." ~ monthos
"This is not that extreme, but it's still disgusting. We have drinking water taps instead of fountains. One parent was suspicious of whether they were cleaning the tanks or not. So they made an announcement that the tank was being cleaned every single day."
"A lot of us didn't believe it, so a group of boys decided to see for themselves if it was true or not. So they put a dead frog in the tank when there was no one around. I don't even know where they found the frog but they swear they didn't kill it. Anyway the frog was there for a few weeks. And obviously the water started tasting weird."
"After the teachers got multiple complaints, they opened the tank and found the frog. The boys were punished, but they fired back with the fact that they lied about cleaning the tanks. They were still punished, because they proved it in a disgusting way. They could've put literally anything in the tank, but they chose a dead frog." ~ R00mTemperature
The QuadAcds2 Look Away GIF by Anime Crimes DivisionGiphy
"A worker doing stuff on the roof. He fell off. Landed in the 'quad' at lunch. A large piece of machinery fell and squished his head. Like a cartoon, only funny. Like 150 Kids saw this." ~ LordInventus
"The Latin kings gang threatened my cousin and his friends and they had 10 squad cars guarding the whole school and dismissed us the same day early." ~ Terrykrinkle
“it’s gonna blow”
"I had just moved in from Egypt to the states in my senior year of high school. A teacher thought it would be funny to fold a bunch of papers and wrap them in duck tape to make it look like a bomb and threw it my direction and went under his desk saying 'it’s gonna blow.' Everybody started laughing and I was so clueless then I just laughed along. It infuriates me to this day that I didn’t call him out on it or report him." ~ ezzabousaif
"Someone somehow made a bomb threat on a Swedish fish candy. Like one single piece. I don’t know how it happened but he got arrested." ~ ts_13_
"A couple weeks before graduation, this kid hacked into the school system and put a Hitler quote and a Boston bomber reference in the senior quotes for the yearbook. One of the affected parties was a trans girl, and we're still not sure if it was a targeted act because of that."
"Administration didn't find out until the entire senior class had received their books. Some people turned theirs in to get their pages replaced, but some kept it because it was a 'limited edition item' or some stupid sh*t like that. Kid got arrested and charged with cybercrime, since he hacked everyone in our school system's school passwords."
"He was so close to graduating too, but got expelled like two weeks before he could. Looked like a rat too. It was all over the news, and everyone in the state of CT basically knows about this now. Got out on bail for $5000." ~ kocorpsie
Good God!Season 3 What GIF by On My BlockGiphy
"We had a huge fight happen in the girls bathroom."
"Apparently one student brought drugs to school and was selling it to her friends. A completely unrelated student caught on and stole the drugs while everyone else was in class. She was caught snorting the drugs in the bathroom by the group selling the drugs and got the crap beat out of her."
"We also had a recently graduated student murder his parents for insurance money . He hid the bodies in a chicken coop and told everybody they were on vacation. It wasn't until 7 months later the bodies were found by the landlord because the rent was late." ~ randomgenericcow
Enjoy high school, at least try too. Maybe if more kids do that, it wouldn't be so insane.
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