I took a couple of phone interviews for round two of the consulting job yesterday. I think I passed but you never really know. The first guy would be my boss's boss. He's in CA and I'd call him the guy who distributes the vision and is responsible for building the business of this services arm of a very large corporation. He was an interesting interview, going kind of Microsoft on me a couple of times. For example, without the use of your computer, how would you estimate the number of gas stations in the US? I came up with a couple of different approaches which were basically valid. He said his answer was to count the number of stations in his town of 10,000 and then use that to multiply up to the number for the population of the US. He was more interested in the the thought process than the answer. He also asked a couple of behavioral interview questions as in, tell me about a time you successfully dealt with a difficult business partner. Tell me about an unsuccessful time. Having used this method a bunch in my interviewing, I don't find it hard to come up with examples.
The second guy was the first guy's guy. By that I mean, they've worked at a number of places together. He was fairly easy to talk with and I think we established a good rapport. I got him to describe a consulting horror story - he's based in CA and ended up on an assignment in NYC for 6 months. He was given internal people to work with who weren't performing very well and vendors to the project that didn't see him as useful. He described a process where he began to micro manage the employees (no other choice, really) and began reporting to the project sponsor the shortcomings of the vendors. I guess by the end, he had gained the trust of the sponsor and now has a very good referenceable account.
So, a couple days off for Thanksgiving. I do have a phone interview this morning with an insurance company up the road in ME. I don't think I can make the $$ work out while commuting to the office (tolls, miles, time). But you don't get to hear about the job until you tell them you willing to work for the $$ they put on the table, so I told them I was interested and now I've got an interview.
I give thanks for those of you who support me. I give thanks to my family and friends. I give thanks for my good health and generally good spirits even in these trying times. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.