A call from Mercedes…


It’s the day after the Mercedes interview and I’m fiddling about distractedly at home. It’s hard to concentrate on anything at the moment, my career hangs in the balance of someone else’s decision making process and I don’t like the uncertainty. I was told to expect an answer in two days so at least I don’t have long to wait. From what I was told they’re still interviewing today and then it’s decision time. Ulp!

I’m actually sat in my study writing this blog when my mobile bursts in to life late morning. I grab it and hit answer, “Hello, Charlie Croker”. It’s Mercedes, HR Manager! Why’s she ringing now? I know they’re still in the process of interviewing. It’s bad news, they must have decided I’m out, decided to put me out of my misery. “Thank you for your interest in the position, I’m afraid that I have to tell you that on this occasion you have been unsuccessful. However we will keep your records on file and will consider you for any future roles within our company. We’d like to wish you all the best with your job search. Goodbye”. I’ve heard it all before, I know the script. The polite brush off and then they can concentrate on the main contenders.

Amazingly this whole thought process races through my mind like a Blipvert in about half a second before the poor woman even has chance to draw breath.

It turns out that I’m blissfully wonderfully fantastically joyously wide of the mark! Whilst they are still interviewing, she tells me, they would very much like to put me through for assessment with Mercedes UK! I almost drop the phone, but I cling on to it like a lifebuoy in a storm as she goes on to describe the assessment process. I’ll get a call from HQ first confirming my details, and then two emails, one with a web site address and another with a user name and password. Enter both and complete my details on line, and then it will take me through to the assessment which will take about half an hour. Complete that and I’m done. They’ll be in touch.

What does this mean? Have I got the job? Surely she’d have said so if so. This must just be the next level of interviews, a sort of high tech second interview stage. I need to know. So I ask.

“How many positions are there” I enquire (in the interview I was made aware there was potentially more than one) “and how many are being put forward for assessment?” It turns out there are two jobs, and three put forward for assessment so far, although they’re still interviewing so there could potentially be more. I thank her and we say our goodbyes.

You know that bit in soap operas and TV dramas where after a monumental call the actor always stares at the phone afterwards before putting it down? I do that for a bit before slowly placing the phone back on my desk. It’s weird, despite hoping and wishing and thinking of nothing else since yesterday, somehow I wasn’t expecting that. Weird, but good. Very very good.

I spend the remainder of what’s left of the morning in a bit of a daze, then pull myself together and wander downstairs to make lunch, taking my phone with me. As I’m buttering the bread it rings again and I snatch it up. As quickly and efficiently as promised it’s Mercedes UK and a nice lady runs through my details and explains the procedure. The emails will be with me this afternoon and I’m asked to complete the assessment within two days, I tell her she’ll have it done and back to her by return.

I eat lunch buzzing with anticipation and unable to concentrate on the car magazine open on the table next to me. I settle for turning to the review section at the back and thumbing through pictures and stats of Mercedes Benz. I’ve got it bad.

All washed up and I’m bounding back upstairs. I’m going to act on these emails immediately and get them straight back, I know they’ll be waiting for me and I want to be first, show my enthusiasm at every turn.

They’re not. I Click send/receive a few times to make sure my email is connecting with the server. It is and they aren’t there. Damn.

OK, I can wait. I fiddle about idly, flicking through a couple of web sites, unwilling and unable to engage in any activity until I’ve got this assessment thing done and finished. Still no email…

An hour later and I’m getting paranoid. What if this is an initiative test? You hear about these things don’t you? People going for interviews and finding the interviewer stood on a filing cabinet just to see if the interviewee asks why? Probably apocryphal nonsense, but it makes you think. What if they’re waiting to see what I do? Do I wait patiently? Do I call and ask where it is? Will that seem over eager or pushy? What, what?

I don’t do patient well so I phone the HR Manager. She gives me the number of the nice lady at Mercedes UK and I phone her. I’m told she’s in a meeting and I explain to whoever has answered the phone that I’ve not received the emails and I was just a little concerned that perhaps the email address was wrong. Or something. She’s very nice and explains that they just haven’t sent them out to anyone yet. She promises to do it straight away for me. Phew, think I got away with that.

Three minutes later both emails drop into my in box.

The assessment is a sort of personality test. A series of statements and five radio buttons from “strongly disagree” through to “strongly agree”. There are four or five to a page. And thirty seven pages! It had been stressed very strongly to me that I was to just answer honestly, don’t try and second guess the quiz, there are no right or wrong answers. All very well but when you’re applying for a job in which you’re part of a team, and the questionnaire is asking you questions about your ability to work as a team, if the honest answer is that you’re not much of a team player, what are you going to put? Fortunately I am (from now on!) so I tick yes to those…

Thirty minutes later I’m all done. There’s no going back once you’ve turned each page so no re-checking what I’ve put. I enter it into the system as requested and log out. Now what?

I fire off a polite email to the HR Manager copying it to the Sales Manager letting them know I’d completed the process and looking forward to hearing from them soon. communication is all in sales, so it doesn’t hurt to show them I’m a communicator, and it doesn’t hurt to stay on their radar either. Hopefully the email will do both.

That sent there’s nothing left to do. I don’t get much done the rest of the day, just poke about at home trying to second guess everything that’s happened so far. In the evening I watch a movie and then take myself off to bed but with my mind still churning sleep is a long time coming.

PS. The inteview was Wednesday, the assessment happened on Thursday, I’ve written this post on Saturday morning and it’s scheduled to appear 9am Monday morning. At the time of writing (and therefore as of first thing Monday morning) I’ve heard nothing further.

I normally post once a day as you’ll know if you’re a regular. But the moment I hear I will post it up immediately, regardless, be it in five minutes or five days. Hopefully nearer the former.

As of now this blog is effectively live…!

Stay tuned.


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3 Responses to “A call from Mercedes…”

  1. Colonel Panic Says:

    Well done. Fingers crossed.

  2. Ex chicken Farmer Says:

    Those personality type questionnaires are a real grind, but having seen the results of mine when i answered them truthfully they were uncannily accurate.

    Fingers crossed Charlie!

  3. Salz Says:

    Fingers crossed, but only if you promise to keep writing the blog!!

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