Social Question

MissAnthrope's avatar

Is it just me is or is this employment situation weird?

Asked by MissAnthrope (21491points) March 31st, 2010

So, I need a part-time job and the Blockbuster near my mom’s is hiring.. it’s a good location, the employees are cool, and I found it appealing as a lower-stress break from waiting tables.

So, I walked in to ask for an application and ended up having kind of a pre-interview with the manager. She seemed really cool and sharp, but was immediately talking about hiring me with an eye to make me shift lead and/or eventually management. I was kind of stoked, sounded like a good deal, so I went on to the next step, a group interview the following day.

I didn’t do very well at this interview.. I do MUCH better on a one-on-one interview and usually rock them out hardcore. The group interview was four other people at the same time as me, which completely threw me off, not to mention 2 of the 3 interviewing managers were 20-something guys who seemed kind of dickish and full of themselves. In other words, it was a tough crowd and I left knowing that I kinda bombed. It’s really a lengthy, involved process and I find it ironically amusing that Blockbuster takes it so seriously.

Anyway, I didn’t expect to hear anything back and when I didn’t, I just kept looking. Then, last night I got a call from the first manager, saying that she really wanted to hire me, that she wants me to call the general manager today to make an appointment for a final interview. The lowdown is this:

- I was perceived by the two male managers as not doing very well, and they latched on to something I said (about it being less stressful than restaurant work) and kind of twisted it around, like I don’t even know. Ugh.
– Female manager apparently sees a lot of potential in me and really wants to hire me. She is trying to circumvent the process (and the two male managers) by fighting to hire me directly with the GM.
– She said that she was also fighting to get me a higher wage, as well.
– She was being kind of secretive, because she wasn’t supposed to be telling me what the two male managers thought, didn’t want her other employees to overhear, etc.
– She then called me on her cell phone instead of the store line so she could speak to me privately, but we got disconnected and she didn’t call back.
– I’m supposed to call this GM today to set up a final interview, which they don’t usually do, but the first manager wants to convince him to override the interview consensus (both guys said I was a ‘no’).

So, this whole thing feels a bit weird to me. On one hand, it’s f-ing Blockbuster and I don’t get what the big deal is. Another thing is I don’t really get why she is so gung ho about hiring me, why she feels so confident, especially how she could tell me she saw me as potential without really knowing me or whatever. Part of me wonders if she wants in my pants or something, but I’m mostly kidding.. I think she’s married.

Should I be suspicious? Is this weird?

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28 Answers

Idknown's avatar

Go for it… I don’t see why you’re so careful. It’s a job and you’re right – its just Blockbuster…

Whats the worst that can happen?

Keep looking on the side though…

nikipedia's avatar

I would not be at all surprised if it turns out there’s some kind of power struggle between this female manager and the two male managers. Sounds like there’s definitely a back story there.

But what the heck, might as well go for it, right?

phillis's avatar

This is typical company politics. The only thing you really need be concerned about is whether you get the job. However, getting the job also implies that the professional tactics employed by your female superior, and company politics, is going to reach into your workplace environment, which means that there is likely to be some stress for you that ought not be there, but will be, anyway. This is for you to weight out before taking the position. The female who wants to hire you probably does see some of your potential, but the way she chooses to utilize her management position hints at some personal issues. This would definitely affect your work environment.

marinelife's avatar

I would go ahead and set up the one-on-one interview (your forte) with the GM. She is going out on the limb to give you a chance here so take it.

CMaz's avatar

It sounds to me, and the problem is. Blockbuster pays poorly but moves individuals up the ranks fast.

You end up with immature individuals as managers. Lacking the people skills needed to hire based not only on what you can do but what your potential is.

It seems to me the first manager, see this in you. And would like to have someone around with better sense of maturity.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Some of it is unprofessional – she probably wants more women there to balance out the others – she is using you but you are using them so it’s fine by me, you can always quit later.

Seek's avatar

Sounds like she wants some support from the estrogen team. If those guys are as dickish as you say, I know I wouldn’t want to be invited to that sausage party without some backup.

hug_of_war's avatar

My only concern would be – if office politics is this obvious what will it be like being in a leadership position there. Still, it’s just blockbuster, it’s not like it’s a big deal if you decide after working there to quit.

MissAnthrope's avatar

Okay, good thoughts so far.. I guess I’m most thrown off by why she would go so out on a limb for me like she is. However, the maturity point is a good one, based on what I’ve seen so far, and there may be something to adding another female to the ranks, especially since those guys were pretty lame.

My other reservation, I wasn’t able to put it into words until you guys did (thanks), is the politics and stuff. It makes me a bit uneasy.

Dog's avatar

Blockbuster is in serious financial trouble from which they may will not recover. The era of going to a store to rent movies is quickly becoming antiquated as streaming and mail order/redbox are taking over the market.

That being said if you feel like going for it be sure you keep in mind it could be temporary even if you are hired and that you will have to work with those two managers who disapproved of you.

Personally I would move on and look for a less stressful job that does not have the management polarity and is more stable.

MissAnthrope's avatar

@Dog – Niiiiiiiiice.

The two douchey managers work at different stores, so I wouldn’t have much daily contact with them, I don’t think.

Lightlyseared's avatar

Remember the interview process goes both ways. Not only are they deciding if they want to hire you but you should be thinking about whether you want to work there. My take on this is I would thank the female manager for her support but not take the position.

filmfann's avatar

You are right about blockbuster vs. the restaurant job. Don’t worry about it, I am sure you will wow the right people. You always wow me.

Just_Justine's avatar

I think the others pretty much nailed it. I do think though to your credit they saw a lot in you which is positive. I think the females professional skills are slightly “wanting” as she is kind of building up your hopes and keeping you posted. What if the other two “males say no for example? I reckon take it as it comes, it’s not a life long decision, plus management looks good on a CV. To be honest though when I read your post I also thought she had the hots for you. But then I am mental so don’t listen to me!!

MissAnthrope's avatar

@filmfann – Aw, thanks. blush

@Just_Justine – At least I’m not the only one (wondering if she’s trying to get in my pants or mental, take your pick).

Cruiser's avatar

The current job conditions have a lot of over qualified people in these positions and they are unhappy fish out of water and some of these managers could be one of them. Take the job and treat this inside information with a grain of salt as it could be completely opposite of what it first appears to be. Play nice with all the people you come in contact with and just be professional even though it may just be Blockbuster.

trailsillustrated's avatar

I am amazed to see what an intricate process getting a job at blockbuster is. wow.

phillis's avatar

@trailsillustrated That’s the benefit of an open society without a blacklist, baby :)

MissAnthrope's avatar

@trailsillustrated – That’s only the half of it.. the other half is this really long, involved online application and personality test. I think it took me like 2–3 hours to complete.

YARNLADY's avatar

In this economy, you are probably better off to take any job offer you get, and keep looking. When you find something better – leave, you don’t owe them any thing other than the hours you agree to work for the wages they pay.

trailsillustrated's avatar

does it pay well? it sounds like a corporate interview—I wouldve been scared to death—PS what do they ask on the tests? amazing!

MissAnthrope's avatar

It’s ridiculous, but I don’t even know what the pay rate is at this point.. no one has said anything. I assume it’s minimum wage to start. I need to call this guy soon, I’ve put it off because I don’t know how I feel about this. I mean, the whole point to applying at BB was that I just wanted an easy job where I would get to shelve videos and crap. I just am not sure I wanted all this to be a big deal.

@trailsillustrated – The test was a short personality test asking questions like whether stealing from work is always wrong, whether I’d be comfortable with a coworker putting me in an unethical position, whether I’m a motivated go-getter, etc… pretty transparent, easy questions.

trailsillustrated's avatar

Wierd! I would do it for fun, till you get something better. Why not? You are certainly worldly enough to do a job like that and laugh up your sleeve at whatever goings on you see. Keep us posted. Sounds like a very bizarre adventure. I used to hire movies at hollywood or whatever big store it was and I often thought what a chill job it looked like!

Blondesjon's avatar

A job is a job and they all involve weird, personal, workplace bullshit. Give it a try. You can always quit if it’s unbearable (I’m assuming you are single and childless).

and where in the hell do you live that still has a Blockbuster open, let alone hiring?

mrrich724's avatar

I work in a department with 3 other HR professionals. I am a young man, and two of the others are 50 year old women. Naturally, we find different qualities in candidates appealing.

Because I am the most entry level, they tend to take my choice in applicants less seriously. So when I interview someone I know will be great, and I think the others may not like the candidate, I immediately introduce them to the other managers who they will be working with.

More often than not, the managers will really like them. I think that is what’s going on here. The girl identifies with you and thinks you will do great, the guys don’t like you so much. So she’s trying to go around them and get you hired anyway.

If you want the job, go for it.

MissAnthrope's avatar

@Blondesjon – Oakland, CA.. we have lots open around here. This particular store is one of the highest performing stores in the area, in terms of sales/revenue, but it also is in a somewhat wealthy area.

I called and left a message, I figured what the hell.. so I guess we’ll see!

JeffVader's avatar

Well, I’d say it is rare to find someone who has faith in you, so much so that they actively want to bend the rules. However, this really is a win, win situation for you. If you don’t get the job you’ve lost nothing. If you get the job & she wants what’s in your pants, assuming it’s what she’s expecting, then bam, a job & abit of the other, sweet. If she just thinks you’ve got loads of potential, well, having someone push you to achieve is never a bad thing.

MissAnthrope's avatar

@timjeffvaderdrewen – I like your perspective. :)

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