Saturday, February 18, 2012

Where Do You See Yourself In Five Years After We've Sucked The Life Out Of You?

I'll be blunt. We like you. Your last interview really impressed us, and we think you're the most promising candidate for the job. Your skills seem like a perfect fit for us. I just have one question: What do you think about your future here? Where do you see yourself in, say, five years... after we've destroyed your spirit and sucked the life out of you?

Moving up in the company isn't just about having a title and an office. It's about challenging yourself. We want to know what you hope to accomplish here at the firm. Especially after you've sacrificed every personal goal and betrayed those you love so you could work 80-hour weeks. Once you've done all that and become some kind of dead-eyed husk of a human being, what kinds of projects will you want to tackle?

Tell us what kind of person you hope to become during your time here. After you've gained 30 lbs. from sitting in a cubicle all day and eating rancid takeout while you type meaningless characters onto a screen until your eyes feel like they're on fire... How do you think this process will turn you into a better version of yourself?

And are you willing to be part of the big picture here? Can you synchronize your goals with the team's goals? Say we dangle a promotion in front of you to make you work extra hard during a tough quarter - maybe you miss visiting your kid in the hospital during a serious illness, and your wife has an affair and you don't even notice, because you're so absolutely cold and paralyzed inside. And then after that quarter passes, we just hire some new guy to take the spot we promised you, and he's about five years out of college? Could you handle those obstacles? Could you adapt and grow as an employee?

Our company is all about profits. But we're all about people as well. And we want to make sure we're going to achieve our objectives together. We want to make sure we wring every bit of energy and initiative out of you until you just die of an early heart attack and save us money on your 401K. But we want to know that's what you want as well.

Because we're like family here. The only family you'll have.

Welcome aboard!


  1. If the interviewer actually had the balls to ask me that question, I'd thank him or her for their honesty and resume my job search. And if I were actually *smart*, I'd think about trying to start *my own* business.

    1. I've worked for five entrepreneurs in the last decade, and believe me when I say there are more enjoyable ways to go bankrupt.

    2. If I am asked this question, I would hope to respond "If you asked me that five years ago, I wouldn't have said 'Applying here.'"

  2. Oh, my. This is spot on. (Tragically so.)

    If this is part of your list of "funnier" posts, I shudder to think what I'm going to encounter when I get to the "darker material".

    Whatever. You're good.


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