Thursday, March 21, 2013

A Cyst

I'm pretty sure it's a cyst. I found it on the underwire line when I took my bra off yesterday evening. It's a hard lump just in front of the armpit. I tried massaging it, hoping it was just a clump of tissue, but it's still there.

The worst part is that I have no insurance now. No job, no insurance. I guess I really fucked that up.  That means if I go to have it checked out that it's going to be costly, a cost that I can't necessarily afford. I've already been on several interviews and been turned down by all but one company. I had the final interview with them last week and am waiting for their final decision this week. I have 2 phone screens today and an in-person for Tuesday with 3 other companies. At least, as long as I'm interviewing the other companies know that someone else may want me, which puts the 911 on the interview process.

What a way to go this would be. Killed by a cyst that became tumorous and wasn't removed all because I raised my voice one time and let an executive know another that his behavior was making me feel defensive. Stressed to death.

I have the option of tapping into my HSA to pay for the doctor, mammogram, draining. I don't have too terribly much in my 401k and IRA. Maybe I could plunder that.

I remember the days of waiting for my wife to leave, so I could secretly try on her bra. I remember sneaking herbal breast products and later starting hormone therapy. I remember not being able to wait until I got home to wear a bra.

I remember wearing a bra under my work clothes because it felt good, and later having to wear a bra because going without made my nipples hurt. I remember getting a natural breast augmentation done to be more proportionate.

Lately, I've been having to take my bra off to sleep, and now, I will have to forgo the underwire bra in favor of camisoles and jogging bras.

Sometimes life comes full circle.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Interview Questions

I am finding that I am starting to enjoy a certain part of interviewing and that's the point when I get to ask the questions. I have stock questions that give me insight into the company, the culture, the processes and the people. 4 to 5 questions is all it takes. I am also to take that insight and use it to drive my Q/A time at some follow-up interviews, which I did for the first time yesterday. I'm kind of wishing that I had discovered this technique some time ago. I also saw how well people who already worked together got to know each other better when I ask these questions to a group. I highly suggest taking the time to make your own stock list of lines of questioning. As an example here's mine, especially when I'm stumped for more specific questions:

1. What's your favorite part about working at XYZ, inc?

2. If you could change one thing, what would it be?

3 (For the technical interview). What new technologies have you introduced? What is the process of introduction? And did the technologies meet your expectations?

4. (For the managerial interview). If I were to be/progress into management, are there good mentors available? Do you have a good mentoring process?

5. (For the follow-up) This is a good time to drill down on things raised in previous interviews as the interviewer's job title dictates.

6. What recent challenges are you facing today and going forward?

7. Tell me about your first assignment/how you came to work for XYZ, inc?

Two questions I hate to hear are:

1. Where do you see yourself 1, 3, 5 years from now?

I hate this question because I'm a dynamic individual, and the answer, whether or not you honestly truly feel it, can jeopardize the interview. Do you have too much ambition or not enough? Ambition is ambition, sometimes requires encouragement, and sometimes requires tempering. The point is no one knows where they're going to be, and it makes them less agile. Maybe I should answer with a question of my own from now on: "I'm not sure. Are there specific opportunities that I should be considering at those intervals?"

2. What do you see as your greatest weakness?

This is a horrible question. Nobody is going to be completely forthcoming when they answer this question, because they risk getting the job. Instead, the candidate has to pick something that they are working on already that isn't their greatest weakness; or they have to pick a strength and show the negative side, thereby implying the actual strength. The last time I was asked this question, I was talking about my strength and accidentally started talking about how it became a weakness as a manager; to which I found I triggered commiseration from my interviewer.

Getting to know the people, culture, and processes before you start working someplace is vital. And even if you don't get the job, you can digest all that experience into secondary wisdom that you can take with you when you finally do land a job. This is really pertinent if you plan to lead or manage at any level.