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Applying for a job you aren't sure you want

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by BB Bobcat, Aug 19, 2006.

  1. BB Bobcat

    BB Bobcat Active Member

    I'm considering applying for a job in a different area, but I'm not 100 percent sure that I'd even want the job if it was offered to me, mostly because of travel, moving and family considerations. So I'm wondering how bad it looks in the eyes of editors to apply for a job, go after it as if you want it, and then turn it down? I would feel bad about having someone spend time on me and then offer me a job, only to have me then say, "oh, never mind." Would I get a bad reputation from doing something like that?

    On the other hand, I don't want to just let potential opportunties go because I'm only 80 percent sure that I'd want the job.
  2. Gob Bluth

    Gob Bluth Member

    I think the interview process goes both ways. You never know if you are going to like the town or the feel of the place. So I see no wrong in just going through the process.
  3. joe

    joe Active Member

    It's OK to test the waters and see what else is out there, but don't make promises you can't keep. Eighty percent sounds like you would seriously entertain another offer -- but is it really that high? If the process moves along, finally sit down and make a list of pros and cons. Or just flip a damn coin. It's only life.
  4. Roscablo

    Roscablo Well-Known Member

    I say apply. You never know, you may just find out it's the best job ever.

    I think taking risks in job searches is an important thing to do. I've had a couple of instances in my recent past where I thought about the possible cons of a job too much. I eventually figured out these would be a great situations for me only to find out I waited to long to apply.

    At the very least you get the experience of another application process. That can always help down the road.
  5. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    That should be the way it is, but they don't always see it that way after flying you in. I felt bad about it the first time I turned down an offer, and there was one other editor who apparently thought I owed it to them to accept and insinuated that I pursued the opening just to satisfy my ego. After that I did all I could to decide whether I really had an interest or not before we got to that point. A couple times I just got bad vibes on the phone and decided I didn't want to meet the SE. A bunch of times I bailed during the critique process when it became apparent that the paper wasn't what I was looking for (too much of a mess or too few resources, usually) or in one case when the product was decent but I just couldn't see myself wanting to do things the way they were doing it. A couple of places, I told them I had an interview scheduled elsewhere and planned to accept if they made a decent offer. A couple places, I cut to the chase by telling them what I was looking for financially. But you can do all that, fly in and decide for whatever reason that you can't see yourself being happy there. They should understand that but don't always.
  6. awriter

    awriter Active Member

    You have nothing to lose by applying. And you are well within your rights to turn down an offer, even if they flew you in for the interview.
  7. BB Bobcat

    BB Bobcat Active Member

    Thanks guys, I feel better now. We'll see what happens.

    They probably won't want me anyway :)
  8. Gold

    Gold Active Member

    Look at it from a couple of other sides. You might get an interview and find that what you thought was a negative isn't a problem or there are positives you didn't realize you were there.

    And you might apply for a job you are 100 percent sure you would take and it turns out things were worse than you might have expected.
  9. Hank_Scorpio

    Hank_Scorpio Active Member

    People send in resumes and get interviews, only to turn down the job when it's offered.

    Maybe the money isn't what you'd thought it would be.
    Or maybe the job duties changed since the ad came out. Or maybe when the realism comes that you would be moving, it hits you or your family in a different way than when you applied. Or maybe you just don't like the city when you see it.

    Hell, look at Ann Arbor. There's been at least three SEs that have turned down the job after it was offered.
  10. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    Three? That's two more than I knew about - wow. Why isn't anyone taking that job? Is it a bad situation or are they making bad choices?
  11. DyePack

    DyePack New Member

    They can't run from here to there without collapsing from heat exhaustion.
  12. Moderator1

    Moderator1 Moderator Staff Member

    I'm told reliably by two people that AA has been turned down just once - this time. Apparently there was some turndownage that last time it was open, too.
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