I had an interview yesterday actually. I had perfected my resume for this employer, which I'll call Company X, and had secured this interview. Anyway, I met with the interviewer, all dressed up in the acceptable, conservative business professional attire. I sat in a manner that projected attention and interest in this interview. I had wonderful answers for all of the interviewer's questions. And she looked like I was becoming one of the favorites to go on to the second round of interviews. Honestly, if you had been seeing this exchange of words, you would totally be able to feel and sense the exciting momentum and the air of security and confidence radiating from my person.
It was going deliciously well...until she asked me where I saw myself five years from now.
I said, "Well, I hope, if Company X hires me, to be at another level within the company, promoted and not be in the same position that I'm applying for today..."
Perhaps I should have stopped there. I did not.
"Or, because I'm an economics major, and it has been a dream of mine to do this, I'll be working for the Federal Reserve."
In a split second, I saw the interviewer's happy facial expression transform into one of utter disdain. Oops?
She asked me, "Now, I'm going to be honest with you. How do you think Company X would feel if we took the time to train you, give you extensive knowledge about our products and services, and then at the first offer you get from the Fed you choose to leave?"
"Well, I suppose Company X would not feel good."
"Exactly, and because this is a competitive position, Company X is looking for someone who plans to be here long-term. We don't want to spend time with someone just to see them go."
Well, I couldn't lie about my ultimate plans about going into the public sector via the Fed. I passionately replied:
"I do not know what will happen tomorrow, next week, next year, or in ten years. I can only promise that if Company X hires me, I will do my best to make the company better. I will treat my clients in a unique and personable manner, helping them get what they need most, while simultaneously helping the company. I will be loyal. That's one of the reasons I have worked at my current job for about two years. There are definitely other jobs out there that I could take and leave my current job, but I don't do it because I'm too loyal to my current job. I love the people I work with, I love the managers I work with, I love my customers, and if Company X provides an environment similar to the one my current job provides, then I will also remain loyal. If this happens to be the case, then I might never even consider a job offer from any other company or the Fed."
I guess it was a pretty lengthy response. But I was being honest. The interviewer then said, "Ok, I'll send your information to the rest of management then. But if you take some time to think and find that you are no longer interested in this position, or if you have any questions, please contact me and let me know."
An exchange of thank you's and goodbyes.
For a second, I felt kind of guilty and bad about my dream to work for the Fed one day. But then I started thinking, well, it is not my fault I would like to work for the Fed, you know. And I can't know whether I would ever even get an employment offer from the Fed in the near or distant future. Life might take some sharp turns, and I might even end up not working in the finance field. I can't say I'll stay with Company X forever and ever, who does that? If relatively better opportunities come up, why wouldn't I take them? I am after all my own person. This isn't a marriage I'm proposing to Company X.
Ugh, I'm just hoping defending my Fed dreams pay off.