I decided recently that spending my life sitting in a cubical under florescent lights hammering away on resumes is not the life I need. I have been in the boring, yet safe human resources field for twelve years. Change in my life was clearly needed.
Yesterday I had my first interview for an amazing new job. I adorned my “interview suit” and headed to a local health club for a management position. As I sat down in the waiting room I sized up my competition. Clearly I had been in the corporate world a little too long. It quickly dawned on me that of the ten other interviewees; I was the only one in a suit. Being a health club, the standard dress is polo shirts and khakis. Everyone around me, including the staff conducting the meetings, sported athletic wear. As we began the interview, I was asked why I wanted to leave a comfortable office job for the chaos of a gym. I tap-danced through my beliefs of always wanting a crazy job with the buzz and excitement. The standard questions you give in an interview, the ones I’m usually asking, were easy to answer. It’s funny and very true that the hardest person to interview is someone who has worked in hiring and recruiting.
Sitting in the Manager’s office in my imported power tie, and after I unintentionally corrected the interviewer’s knowledge of labor law, we both attempted to see if I was not a square peg being forced into a round hole. She asked about my passion for the fitness industry. I did my best to explain that I’m really just a gym guy. I truly live in gym shorts and tee shirts and I’m most happy out on my bike or at the gym. At the end of the interview I had the overwhelming urge to rip off my tie and shirt and show my hole filled undershirt.
The lesson I learned is to dress the part. Dress for the job you want.
We will see if I get a call back.