Sunday, June 25, 2006


Whenever I interview someone for my team, I try to see if they would fit in. I love my team. I love being a part of it. We're one of the most cohesive teams in my company *touchwood*. We work together and play the fool together with amazing co-ordination. And somehow, the five of us are very much like one another. So if I feel that a certain candidate will not fit in, even if they have the credentials and experience, I am reluctant to hire them.

So last week I was interviewing this girl. She had excellent credentials, and six years of relevant experience.

"So what made you apply for this job?" I asked.

"Well, one of my very good friends used to work here, and she told me about the work here..."

"Really? What's her name? And what did she tell you about the work?" I asked.

Blank look from interviewee.

Blank look back from interviewer.

"Her name...?" I asked.

"Oh my God, I can't believe I forgot her name. I forgot my own friend's name!" She laughed nervously.

That took me back ten years in time. I had not taken my bicycle that day and so Dad was there to pick me up after school. I was introducing my friends to him, who were standing in a semi-circle around us.

"Dad, this is Raj, and this is Anu, this is Shreya, this is Amit, this is Rajesh, this is Sunny, this is Ritu, and this is..." As I neared completion of the semi-circle, I realised that the name of the last girl had completely escaped my memory. It was unbelievable because she was a very good friend of mine.

So I did the best thing I could think of.


Someone opened my water bottle and handed it to me, as Dad stood there shocked at my sudden and explosive coughing bout. By the time my coughing had "subsided", my friends had exchanged goodbyes with Dad.

The moment I sat in the car, I exclaimed. "Dad, Pallavi! Pallavi!"

"Huh?" said Dad.

"The last girl! She was Pallavi. Pallavi!!"

"Err... okay..." Dad looked at me with a mixture of confusion and concern.

Flashback over.

So the girl in the interview room continued to look at me blankly for a few more seconds. Then she said, "Uhh... Do you mind if I check my phone?"

"No, problem. Please go ahead."

She looked at her phone, and then proceeded to give me the name of her friend and what her friend had told her about the nature of the work in my company.

Then she looked at me and nervously smiled.

I assessed her in my head.

To forget the name of one of her closest friends' name in the middle of a serious interview where every move of hers was being judged and recorded? To have to look at her phone before she could answer interview questions?

Gosh, this girl was crazy. CRAZY!

"Yup, she'd fit right in." I thought, as I wrote my recommendation.


Duhita said...

Gold?!:D It's so good to be on the same time zone:) hehehe Anyways look forward to hear how crazy can she get if she finally joins your team. And no worries, I always forget names, unintentionally of course!;) hahaha

shub said...

hehe I've had whole conversations with ppl without recalling where-the-hell I know them from or their name! :D All along while I'm hemming and hawing and smiling, in my head I'm thinking "do I know you, do I know YOU?!"

so erm....I qualify for your team?! :)

manu said...

good going sayesha. u have opened up a great topic.I can site people who forgot their husband's name, just because someone more important came in the scene,.;-) a cine star.

Pakku said...

Wonder what it wud be, if I forget my own name!! My mobile contacts doesnt have my name... *Let me add it*

The Smiling Girl said...

Very true.. happened to me more than once and I end up telling- Umm.. sorry yaar I forgot ur name...:)
My close friends know this about me, so its ok..:)

But I also liked the - this girl is crazy, she will fit in...:) wala thinking... so true...:)

And u know what, i also have this I-forget-my-number thingy which u mentioned sometime back and when people say - What u dont remember ur number, I say - Yeah, I dont call myself, right?:).. Yeah, I know u also said the same thing..
Just wondering the similarities in people..:)

The Smiling Girl said...

What Manu said above triggered this thought for me. People ask me when I got married and I actually go blank for a second. My thoughts run - Am I married? When did I get married? Uff.. doesnt feel like I am married.. But when did I exactly get married? Gosh.. how could I forget my marriage date.. Man... Just if I remember it... Uff.. what do I tell? Will she laugh at me?? Uff...

And while all these thoughts are going through my head, I give a weird blank smile and within that time I would've remembered the date. I say - thank God!! and tell the date.
But its very weird that someone who remembers every small date in her life will forget her wedding date!!:)

Guess, I got a point to write in that weird wala tag! Thank God, its not going to go empty!:)

Sumit Tada said...

Completed aapka mass-tag!
And i cant tell how happy i feel reading that there ARE many people who think that forgetting such important things is also normal.......
Wish there are more interviewers like you!!

neihal said...

ALL my college life i had serious problem matching faces with was embarrasing then...but now when i look back...i cant stop laughing.
That is not to say..things have changed now....its still the same thing...but I handle it much better.

freebird said...

I guess i'm here at the bar b4 the usual customers :D

and i just saw tht u added me in ur blogroll, cant believe how happy i'm >:D<


I saw tht i'm in ur blogroll, one for u too >:D<

and abt the post, Yeah, its so imp to hav ppl matching ur craziness wavelength arnd you. i've this cous who's just as crazy as i am and we gel soo well..we always have a blast :)

have an exam morrow, *sigh*..the never ending saga...

Before i flood ur commentspace with my longest comment ever, lemme go..hehehe...

Venky said...

Coming to think of it I spent a 14 hour train journey with a class mate of mines whom I was meeting after a year's time and we were discussing stupid things we did together in college and all the time he was calling me Venky and I was calling him clue whatsoever why I did that

(and yes I finally got the name just as I reached home)

American Pi said...

For my current job, I told my interviewer that I knew some folks who had worked in the same office - and if they could excel in this environment, so could I.

chandu said...

happens a lot of times and really is laughable whenever we recollect the incidents

Rohit Talwar said...


You think I'm a crazy too!!! (As you wrote in the testimonial for me) I'll be absorbed in your company!



satish said...

reminded me of your first post that i read here, where you had written abt the points you wud evaluate a person on.

that was quite enlightening and i bacame a big pankha of urs thereafter.

actually it makes me think sometimes. being urself is the best thing that you can do on an interview. but then i have talked absolute crap before my profs and mentor in the discussions that i have had with them. kya karun, control hee nahin hota. i hope i jsut learn to say kee, 'no sir, i dont know about it.'.

i hope to get more fundaes from you on interviews.

The_Girl_From_Ipanema said...

abbe oye rohit. zyaada fudak mat.

oh. forgetting names..{siiiiigh} looks like everyone in this list has an experience like that. makes me feel so much better!!

Sudipta Chatterjee said...

Wow! You must be the best interviewer around!

You revived funny memories ... because I just go blank at times and can't even remember names of simple objects, like keyboards or glasses, etc. So I get to explain things sometimes just in the way Sunil Shetty used to in Aawara Pagal Deewana :)

[Ok, without the added meanings, mostly ;) ]

jade said...

happens with me all the time. i am gonna lose most of my frds soon!

adi said...

oh.. sumthin which happend wid me quite often.. i call ma frendz and after 15 minz am like wat is ur name.. or strt chattin wid gals nd after 10 mins i am like "err.. sorry .. but.. err.. umm. i 4got ur name
and where r u frm??
> fuck off.. "
i luved dis one of urs

Sumit Tada said...

He he he aur karo mass-tagging..........hope u didnt mind it!!
Did u??

bananapen said...

Hahahaha cool :)

Sirius Black said...

ohh man it was gr8 u did the coughin part.
I was once working in a NGO and was incharge of Annual Recruitments.After completing that and giving my good bye speech i was talkin about all the people in my team.When i came over to the last girl , i forgot her name.
I just completely went Blank , even forogt to do the coughin part.
She almost killed me later lol :)

Rebellion said...

hehehe.. I knew this Sash!!

The minute I started reading that she'd forgotten her friend's name, I knew she'd fit into YOUR team perfectly and you'd love her to be a part of it :P

Hope she's doing her part of job (read:craziness) just fine now :P

Take care,

Shekhar said...

Ha ha. Good one..birds of the same feather had better flock together. :)

Funny thing is, this is the first time that I've heard of someone being recommended because the candidate goofed up during the interview. Hmm...

The_Girl_From_Ipanema said...

so i think if any of us ever needs a job, we know where to go, eh?? ;)

Sayesha said...

Haha! I'm hoping she'll accept the offer. If she does, we'll have many more stories :)

Hahahaha! It's not a compulsory criterion, you know! :P But from what I know, yes, you qualify. :)

Really?? Hahahahahahahahaha! :D

No worries, your resume will be in my hands, and hopefully you'd have remembered to put your name in it! ;)

#Smiling Girl,
I think my friends may just kill me if I tried that :P

Thanks for taking up the tag! :P
ps: Wish there were more spontaneous interviewees like her! :)

Hahaha! I'd still do the cough-cough routine, I suppose! :P

Huh? You've been in my blogroll for ages now!!!!! :O
ps: All the best for the exam!! :)

Hahahaha! Bechara yaar! ;)

#American Pie,
And where's the part where you forget something and think that you screwed up the interview?? :D


Yes yes, but my offer's gonna expire soon, so complete that MICA thing asap and get your ass to Singapore! :)

Hmmm... it's a dilemma actually... many people are not receptive to "I dunno" type answers... you gotta evaluate the interviewer first I suppose? :)

#Ipanema Gal,
Ek toh late aate ho, phir Rohit ko daant-te ho?? :P

Hahahaha! LOL @ the Sunil Shetty thingie! :D

Hahahaha! :D

Dude, I suppose you're talking about random girls you talk to on the net? Bad boy bad boy! :D

No yaar! I'm one of the guys, remember? ;)

Hope she joins man... She's the one asking for more than my salary, hope HR gets her in! :)

Hahaha! Hope you treated her to pani puri, man! :)

Hehehe.. you're beginning to get me now! :)

Now don't you go and goof up your next interview on purpose! :D

#Ipanema Gal,
*Sayesha looks at her nails coyly and considers*

Liz said...

Hey, i was @ east coast yday..and suddenly remembered your post on b'bay cafe :) How do i get there? =D Perhaps next time I can drop in..
cheers :)

PS: i think i can get gold only if you're in a different timezone! =P

Hari said...

Hey! Gimme ur corporate mail id! I wanna post my resume too! I am CRAZY!! Beleive me, I am real CRAZY!!! How else would you justify my habit of reading your blog posts the first thing in the morning at office, unmindful of my ever growing workload!

Nirwa said...

Hahaha.. it happens so many times with me.. I forget names of friends, phone numbers, etc..

Can I join you in your team? :P


Raj said...

I generally dont forget names but kabhi kabhi ho jaata hai. It can be really embarassing.

I think the girl has guts to do what she did in an interview.

Neways, I just went thru the whole plagiarism row on ur blog. Sad but am glad its over :)

Bhaarat said...

I am sure no one can beat me on such Duh's. I have obscene number of such incidences. I will write a blog on the same tonight after finishing my work.

I will quote one incident here which has happened number of times with me. I called up one my friend and forgot whom I have called. So when the other side picked up the phone I forgot whom I have called and what for. So here goes the conversation.

ME: Hi Amit
FRIEND: I am sorry I am not Amit.
ME: Oh... then u must be Rohit.
FRIEND: I am not Rohit either.
ME: Okie then u must be Venky... Nopes U r karthik.
FRIEND: Whom do u want to talk.
ME: You...But I have forgotten your name.
FRIEND: Please disconnect. I think u have dialled a wrong number.
(And he is about to disconnect)
ME: Hold on Hold on... I have not dialled a wrong number. I am Bhaarat from Ahmedabad. I am sure u know me. Please tell me ur name.

And then we talk for long long time. till the end I dint recall why I called him.

roopa said...

its common for ppl now-a-days to refer to their gadgets even to find out their anniversary date/spouse bady..thats the times v line in..

American Pi said...

That happened with my Dell interview, I was shown six Quarterly P&L statements and asked to match them to Dell, HP,IBM, Apple, Gateway and Sony.

I got IBM and HP right - but I forgot how much Dell had earned in that quarter! And that too in a Dell interview. I did not get called back for Round 2. So I actually screwed up. :D

Ramkumar said...

i am slowly becoming an ardent fan of yours.
u create a topic out of nothing ... nothing at all. girl u r gifted.

Sayesha said...

Ooh I was there last night! You gotta take a 43 or 76 from Paya Lebar MRT, and then get off at Katong PO. Cross the overhead bridge and voila, you have Bombay Cafe! :)
ps: Don't forget the gobhi machurian dry. :P

Hahaha! I think you may be a bit too crazy for my team! ;) Besides, you just tried to bribe your future boss with compliments on her blog! :O

Only if you don't look like your profile pic! ;)

Long time, buddy! :) Yeah, I'm glad it's over too! Dun wanna see myself that angry ever again. :)

Hahahahahaha! :D

First time here? Welcome to the bar! :)
Yeah, it's kinda sad huh? We dun remember anything anymore just because we have easily accessible devices to do that for us... :/

#American Pi,
Sheesh! Sounds bad... they ask you to match companies with P&L statements?? :O :O :O
Thank goodness I never applied to Dell! :P

Thanks! *blush* :P

Sumana said...

I forgot my birthday! yes the interviewer looked shocked but it took me couple of seconds and him repeating the question twice, one incorrect answer to get my birthday right!!

Sumit Tada said...

Arey ab itne dino ke baad darshan doge to welcome back nahin kahenge to kya kahenge???

dharmu said...

uh, sayesha bahi....where do i post my resume to join ur team???

US bohut hua,ab singapore dekhen

pradster13 said...

why arent there more team leaders like you, i think most other folks would have rejected the lady..

spamtaneous said...

kya fart hai yaar...

Sayesha said...

Hahaha! So did ya get the job? :D

Thanks, baba! :)

Tu idhar aa toh sahi, Bhai apna legitimate job se resign karke tere saath supari ka business kholega :D

I hope she accepts the offer yaar... problem is that she's asking for more than my salary, and HR will not allow that...

I'm sorry I didn't get you?

spamtaneous said... sorry too... that comment was for ur orkut post

lemme hunt u down in orkut :)

Sudeep said...


pradster13 said...

LOL..asking for more than the team leader..if HR accepts this i will surely like to find out which co. this is...mere liya bhi scope hoga, and will ask for and get more than my superiors :)
take care

Amarula said...

n you were cool to her too!

Sayesha said...

Found me? :)


Hahaha... I think they're bringing her in, but in a post parallel to mine :)

Thanks :)

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