I was number 666.
During a single afternoon, 665 job-seekers managed to find the ad before me. The counter on the online posting told me so, and awakened the little devil on my shoulder.
As a new Canadian immigrant in London, vying against thousands of other PR consultants amid Credit Crunch hysteria, growing nationalism and massive job cuts, I've begun to wonder if I might need to sell my soul for employment. It's less messy than selling a kidney for rent. But I've already tried going corporate – trading my soul for a security card and cubicle – only to find myself, 4 months later, backpacking through Central America in search of it again.
This time, I decided to take a different kind of risk. This time, I'd run with the devil in my cover letter:
Although I was the 666th person to view your ad, I'll not be deterred. Not odds nor omen are any real match for the right candidate.After attaching my CV, I hit SEND and laughed to myself. I knew I wouldn't get the job, but having written no fewer than 50 cover letters in recent weeks, it was fun to change things up a little. Besides, I wouldn't want to work for anyone who doesn't think I'm at least a little bit hilarious.
Two days later, I received an email. Of more than 300 applicants, I'd been selected as one of 10 to grill for ideas. I whipped up (read: sweat out) a proposal. I knew I wouldn't get the job, but having been out of work for a month already, it was nice to write something other than applications.
The next day, my potential employer asked me to come in for an interview. A motivational speaker first, he's now an extremely high-energy and successful all-rounder, writing books, making a documentary, and aiming really, really high.
He asked questions like, "What are three things you'll do that will frustrate me?" And, "What would you rather be doing with your life?"
And said things like, "Are you always like this?"
And, "I'd rather be a travel writer."
We joked a bit, fought to be heard, talked over each other, and then it was time for me to go. I had no idea how it had gone, but when I passed by the next candidate in the hallway, impeccably dressed, in a power suit with her hair pulled back tight, I knew he was about to make her head explode.
On Saturday, even with more candidates to interview, he declared me a finalist – one of three. Right now, I'm supposed to be reviewing a brief to discuss with him tomorrow.
I know I won't get the job, but ... but I just might.
If I don't, I'm going to ask Satan to hook me up with a couple of plane tickets to Thailand. He prefers hot places and, honestly, so do I.
That's me really happy on a beach nearer to the equator than I am now.