I just interviewed for a lateral position in my department at work... and fell flat on my face. So embarrassing.
I don't know what I was thinking. For the last six months (since I stopped working nights) I've been a work robot. I haven't studied up on my technology, I haven't done much of anything except my actual job, but of course in an interview you don't want to say that. Of course, that's exactly what I did say.
Ack. So embarrassed. Part of the problem is that the new job is a mix of an old job that I had three years ago, and another position in the department, for which I have not been trained. However, you'd think in the three years I've been here, I might have taken the initiative to, um, I dunno, look some of it up? Become familiar with information related to but not actually part of my job? That went over real well. When the interviewer asked about the XY protocol, I said that I knew the XY protocol existed, but I didn't know what it was for or what it did. Classy. Smart.
Three years ago when I interviewed for my current position, it went so well that the hiring manager said it was one of the best interviews they'd ever had. I nailed that sucker. This is the first interview I'd had since I started working here. I didn't study, or brush up on my terminology or anything. Because I am stupid.
I didn't use to be stupid, but then I had a kid and things just went downhill from there. It's just as Catherine Newman described in her book, Waiting for Birdy, about how everyone tells you how your sex life will go out the window, or to say goodbye to sleep, but nobody says anything about how dumb you'll become (I'm paraphrasing here, but that was the general point). The act of parenting is so taxing that it just takes over your whole life.
Actually, this isn't the worst interview I have ever had... that honor would go to the interview where I thought that I was applying for a job as a mapping analyst with some programming, but turned out to be a programming job with some map analysis skills. I am not a programmer. I have some programming skills, but certainly not enough to qualify me as a full time programmer. The interview went great up until they asked me to write them a program off the cuff in a language I'd never heard of. I don't think I've ever had an interview end so awkwardly. I came out with this blank piece of paper and told them I couldn't write the program. Then we said goodbye. Horrible. What can I say... they said they wanted a map analyst, not a programmer. Whatever.
This interview was still bad. I think I did OK on the data applications part, but totally sucked on the integrated systems. Of course, I've never been trained on the integrated systems, but that doesn't prevent me from finding the information on my own, does it?
At the end of the interview, he pretty much told me that I wouldn't be considered for the first cut, because of my lack of experience with the integrated systems, but he was willing to consider me in the future if any positions opened up. He even offered to show me the resources for the integrated systems so that I could study up. He was very nice, but I still wished that the floor would open up and swallow me whole.
In a way, this experience was good for me. If it's been three years since you've been to a job interview, it's easy to forget the things to do at a job interview. Like find out what the interviewer is going to ask and find out the answers in advance so you don't look like an idiot. God.
The worst part? My current manager was in the room with us, and overheard my idiocy. I'm sure she'll remember it when it comes time for our next raise.
I am an idiot.