My last post was about not getting the job as a Research Interviewer. Now I got it anyway!
What are the odds of being called back and offered a job after first being rejected? They called me again and asked if I am still interested. The lady said that they have more work in my area and have reconsidered what I said about being fine with the risks and interviewing people with different socio-economic backgrounds. Yay! I start training next week!
Preparation & probation
The preparation requirements and planning (which I have already received in writing) are thought through and fair and well organised, as everything seems to be with this organisation.
There is a questionnaire to hand in by the start of the course. It seems to be a sort of exam in the organisation’s values and the character and duties of the job. I’ll also need pass photos and a ‘fit for work certificate’ from my GP this week.
The formal job offer will be given by the end of the seven day training course. As is the norm in Australia, the first 3 months of the job is a probation period where I can get sacked without any specific reason and virtually no notice. So the job isn’t secure as such, but this is a start, and an income… which is a great improvement since last week.
With this success on board, I have started to worry about the training. Not the training itself, but the seven days of social challenges.
Where I expect difficulties:
1. The breaks: small talk and noise
I’ve always had a hard time with breaks, although I try to camouflage it as good as I can. I hate when I don’t know what to do and where to go, feel lost in noise and confusion, the pressure to small talk and hang out with (make) friends; and the negative image of standing out as a loner.
I fear it can put my new employment at risk if I fail to socialise … even though the job doesn’t involve any workplace socialising with colleagues.
Lunch breaks may involve having to eat lunch in a noisy and chaotic cantina or similar place and if I try to find a quiet spot for myself somewhere where people don’t usually eat lunch, I may brand myself as weird.
2. The risk of fainting
Strong physical or mental discomfort can cause somatic reactions and if it is bad, fainting. I fear that the anxiety and tension related to a new job start, the need to make a great impression, and the dislike of being surrounded by strangers can set it off. It isn’t an irrational fear, it has happened in the past … including on the first day of a new job, on a plane and at a scuba-diving course* (in the classroom, not anywhere near water).
What makes fainting so daunting is the risk of being accused of epilepsy. A suspicion of epilepsy can kill any job opportunity, and would instantly kill this one, because the job relies on driving around in my car to interview people.
The vicious loop is that the fear of this happening can develop into a panic attack, which can trigger it (under unlucky circumstances). As soon as I make it through the first day of training, then the tension will most likely decrease so much that the risk disappears.
Although there are these and other challenges ahead, it is a great win & opportunity to finally get to make some money and find inspiration in the world outside our house … worthy of celebration!
*Consequence: medical clearance cancelled, and scuba-diving permanently ruled out for me.