This is about a hiring seminar that took place in the Apple store located in a local shopping mall on Mon. Sept. 28, 2009.
A hiring seminar is a casual invitation only event instituted by employers. The staff manager first peruses hundreds of applications then sends personal invitations to pre-qualified applicants. I was one of the select few pre-qualified applicants to enter an arena filled with pretentious geeks.
The seminar was slated to be three hours long and there I stood in the Apple store filling out yet another availability sheet. I had some time before the seminar to walk around the store and recognize some of the featured items. I then watched an apple specialist in action. Since I I didn’t know what specialist actually do aside from being overtly friendly I found this demonstration exceptionally helpful . Seconds later we were hoisted away to the second floor towards the seminar room.
I figured in order to get my face remembered I would have to stand out amongst 30 others. So I started out with a basic lead. Leading the group right in through the seminar doors. As soon as I stepped in six employers rushed towards me with their hands in the air awaiting complimentary high-fives. I jumped forward smiling to receive such early praise and camaraderie.
The team of business leaders pleasantly asked us to ” find a seat and introduce the person next to you.” We were then asked to determine what kind of iPod our neighbor was. I asked my neighbor Ian what he was studying? what kind of music he likes? and what his thoughts were on the status quo. A few short answer later I concluded he wasn’t an iPod at all. I explained my answer to the congregation by insisting that “Ian was too old fashioned to be an iPod but if one should be appointed to him an iPod classic would suffice.” I am such a jerk. I prayed that was the only time I would be asked to speak again.
We were prompted to watch a series of videos that addressed job descriptions, career advances and customer service philosophy. After the videos and a brief Q and A they forced us to join groups of 10. I looked around and noticed three areas of the room that housed either an iPod Nano, iPhone or a Mac book pro. These were our customer workshops. We were asked to demonstrate the products to an apple specialist, business director and store manager role playing the common patron or guest. I was so nervous that I was literally shaking. I have never articulated an apple product to anyone other than myself. It was going to sound horrible. The leader critiqued each performance then scribbled in his notepad.
After the second presentation it was obvious who would be called back for a secondary interview. Some people received really good feedback. I for one received a low profile wink and a meager “good job.”