MIDWAY : My first job interview

Prasanna Raj Aryal:

How do you like the weather down here?” Weather? I could not think of any reply. It was the first job interview of my life. Joe, the man I was working for, had engaged me without any such formalities. I had been working two years for Joe for pittance of a salary and had been thinking of moving on to a higher podium. I needed money.

FDTech, with its parent company in Texas, was outsourcing in this city. It had called for applications from individuals with sound knowledge in C#, Perl, XML, Linux and Windows2003 server. Working experience of two years would of course be an advantage. Half of the prospective applicants were so intimidated by the requirements that they decided not to apply. Since the remuneration was mentioned as negotiable, it was clear that the firm was ready to flow out big bucks for the right kind of guy. Thus I thought of going for it. Rudy Bayor, age 24, computer engineer — the resume looked really impressive.

So when the interview turned to things like weather and food, I grew impatient. I knew already that FDTech would hire me, but they didn’t talk about salary — the all important salary. If it turned out to be just another meagre amount, then it was nice to talk to you gentlemen, I thought. A healthy remuneration and I would talk about weather or food or my hobbies and probably ask about theirs. “Weather! well it is rather freezing outside but I’m sure you’ll have ACs in your workplace,” I finally replied. Offices with ACs must pay more in salaries. “Of course,” the man at the centre replied. “We keep our employees warm in all aspects. Tell me frankly Rudy, how much do you really expect for this job?” Ok, there you are. At Joe’s place I was drawing out Rs 5,000 per month. No perks. No benefits. No taxes. Straight cash. “I am drawing Rs 15,000 a month.” Those people probably knew it was an outright lie. Yet they looked at each other and seemed to agree on some initial offer.

“Now here is the deal. For the first six months, you’ll receive Rs 35,000 per month. And...” I didn’t hear what the speaker said next. With that salary, I could live like a pampered prince, I could eat like a pig each day, booze, date endless number of girls and yet save enough to send savings back home. I tried hard not to lose my composure. “Now, do you have anything to ask?” I had not recovered from the salary punch and my head was still swirling. Without thinking I replied, “Yes, umm...lets talk about your hobbies now” and gave my silly smile.