Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Truths or Lies: What Happened This Morning

What would you prefer, a comforting lie or a biting truth?

They say that truth hurts. But why hurt yourself with the truth when you can have a comforting lie? The answer to this question would vary from different people and depends on different cases/scenarios. Some people would prefer the comforting lie rather than the biting truth. Some would not.

Well I got the unfortunate chance to choose between these two this morning. I actually liked to solve or respond to these kind of ethical dilemmas but this morning was (I guess) a little different and a little serious (for me at least). When I was in college we have this subject called Philo 107 (Moral Philosophy) and we got the chance to solve different ethical dilemmas and situations and I really liked it. But we were in the classroom that time solving. This morning was different. It was real.

So here's what happened.. I just had my final interview for the company I am applying for this morning. I did my preparations before the interview. I did a little research about the company and I tried to anticipate and rehears some answers to some possible and common interview questions the night before the interview. Meaning that I already had prepared some answers even before the interview started. Then it was 9am and it was time for the interview. I was very relaxed and confident because I knew that I really prepared for that. The questions were really common (and I guess easy than I anticipated) and I had prepared answers to each of them.

BUT suddenly, there's this one question that made me think and ponder for a while. "What is your weak point?", the interviewer asked. I knew that I prepared an answer to that. But I also knew that the answer I prepared was a "strategic weakness". Meaning a lie. The night before that, I decided to prepare a "strategic-weakness-answer" when I would be asked by that question. It's because I don't want to expose my weaknesses so that no one could exploit it (WTH, oh the paranoid me). Also I knew and anticipated that if I would tell truth about my weakness, the interviewer (he's the Plant Manager btw) would not like my answer. Thus risking my application.

Two things ran into my head that time, "truth or lie". Should I tell the truth and risk my application or should I just stick to my plan and answer my strategic-weakness-answer? Well I cannot really imagine myself to lie to a such serious and good man and being labeled by my conscience as unethical so I told the truth. I told him my true weakness (w/c is I sometimes easily loose my temper). And as I anticipated, he (the way I see it) didn't liked it although I reasoned out that I am working hard on that weakness. He really asked a lot of questions about it. I really felt that my chance of landing that job just went from big to small. Heck.

As of now, I am still pondering and thinking if what I did was the right thing. I chose the biting truth over the comforting lie and risk my chance of landing that job. Well I could have chose to answer my strategic-weakness-answer but I didn't. I chose not to. I don't really believe in the existence of heaven and hell (meaning I'm not afraid of them) and I could have told a lie and know that I would not end up in hell yet I chose to tell the truth. But why? I guess I'm just too ethical that that could be considered as one of my weaknesses. LOL. I'm still pondering on that experience.

So if you were in my shoes, what would you choose? Comforting lie or the biting truth?


jong said...

You could have answered something like:

"In my desire to get things done in a proper and timely manner, I tend to be impatient with indolent persons, sometimes to the point of really losing my temper. I know that this is unprofessional, particularly the temper thing, and so I am continuously working hard on this."

You can then cite examples in school group work (since you still don't have any working experience) when your team mates' lethargy made you angry.

Now that is both a strategic-weakness answer and the truth. Who says you can't have both?

Jobo the Bored said...

Hahaha.. Sayang! Ani man gud na, the company I'm applying is labor based. They dont want people with little patience (or people who easily lus temper) kay basig naay conflict/mag away. I told him na I am flexible and that I can adapt to different people but he told me that that contradicts to what I say re: my weakness (i dnt understand this part). But I reasoned out that the problem of that weakness I mentioned is not about getting into conflict w/ others but that i tend to loose my focus when i lose my temper and I added that I am working on that weakness.

Also, its really difficult to read the mind of the interviewer. i dont know if he liked me or not. i just cant identify emotions in his face. so i guess im 50-50.

jong said...

I see. So the strategic-weakness answer might not have been without complications after all. Anyway, a few more interviews and you'll start to learn how to read an interviewer's bluff.

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