When I first quit my job, I decided that it would be a perfect time to do an internship with an organization I admired that sounded fun, small, and upbeat. I sent in my resume and was immediately contacted for an interview.
(This is not a story about an internship, this is a story about hiring timelines, don’t get too excited.)
I was going to come in two days a week, to help with their Spring Gala and help with other events they had planned. The producer who interviewed me had come to Real Characters, or knew about it, and they seemed really excited to have me on board. I was excited too. It was March, and they wanted me to commit to being able to work their big fundraising event in mid-May. I let them know that I was looking for full-time work, and therefore uneasy about a 3 month commitment. We were going to try to make it work.
But at the time I was interviewing for two different jobs, both of which wanted me to be available to begin work at the end of March. Paid work being vastly preferable to unpaid work, I turned down the fun two day a week internship. Needless to say, I got neither of those jobs.
The amount of frustration that this caused me is vast, and hard to describe. The waiting, the never-ending waiting! I am just supposed to sit and do nothing while people don’t return calls or emails, take five months to make hiring decisions, or never contact me at all?
There is a history of this kind of frustration in my deep past. Right out of college, I turned down an interview with a prestigious theater’s internship program because my boss at the time didn’t think I could do both my job and an internship. Less than six weeks later, the theater where I was working closed its doors, permanently. I had always been a “bird in the hand is worth two in the bush” type of person, but that experience really hurt me.
I still wish I had said yes to the fun, two day a week thing this spring. It would have been a blast, and who know where it would have led? At least I would have learned about development and throwing a gala. I guess we’ll never know.
(head desk slam)