"Job-interview ready" (really)

August 4, 2011
Brooklyn, New York

"Easier name"
Gosh! I really got ready for this job interview. It was kind of silly that I got this excited over nothing (or over a mere possibility… which is basically nothing)

“Orlando…” said the receptionist startling me a little, “She will be right with you in a minute.”

People called me 'Orlando' all my life, so it's not new nor weird for me when someone called me by my first name, 'Orlando'…

Family and close friends though, always called me by my second name, 'Hernan.' According to my mama, it was hard for me as a child, to say 'Hernan' correctly, so they decided to call me by my second name to help me get used to it, and it got stuck.

As it was hard for me as a kid, the name 'Hernan' is hard for non-Spanish speaking people. I learned English at the intensive English program from Brigham Young University. Many of my class mates were from Asia and Europe. I remember one of my teachers spent 15 minutes teaching how to rponounce 'Hernan'... ("Air-Nuhn")

So, after many potential employers kept asking me how to pronounce my name I’ve decided to make it easier for everyone and give my first name a chance to shine once again.

I was seating in a white and very modern and uncomfortable couch that looked “chic” in the modern-looking lobby of Diane von Furstenberg Studio.

A few minutes before I had a painful urge to pee and the fact that right in front of me made me thing that I wasn’t going to be able to hold it for too long.

But the second I entered to the reception area my urge went away.

I guess I was nervous, and that helped.

(It passed 10 minutes and no sign of the interviewer... I looked at the receptionist and she told me she, the interviewer, will be right down)

I was sweating.

It was more than 100 degrees outside. I heard many times that summers in New York City is crazy-hot.

Not even the air-conditioning of the modern-looking waiting area cooled the room enough. Or maybe it was that I was nervous.

I didn’t feel nervous though, I was fine. I was ready for this job interview.

Since the moment the Director of Creative Services of DVF let me know that she wanted to interview me for this opening in the Creative Marketing department I was as excited as a very excited person can get.

"Dress for success"
I was very excited for this opportunity.

And there I was, perfectly combed, well-groomed with an ironed brand-new white shirt, a nice dark charcoal gray suit, matching socks and cordovan-red tie, belt and shoes.

If I stared at my just-polished shoes for a second or two I could swear I could see my reflection on it. It was shiny…

(Another thing I had to memorize was who I was wearing: brown sun glasses by Armani Exchange, Non-iron white shirt by VanHeusen, dark charcoal-gray suit by Milano Moda, charcoal-gray socks by Marcoliani Milano and red tie & green tie by Hugo Boss, striped tie by Guy Laroche Paris, cordovan-red belt by Gucci, cordovan-red shoes by Stacy Adams and dark-brown leather watch by SKC)

Customized portfolio (&Resume)
My portfolio cover was new. I wanted to look new, so I got one Kinko’s for this occasion. I was hard to find a place that would do good quality printing of my work, and it was noticeable.

I had many copies of my proof-read resume.

My Portfolio was customized towards DVF… displaying of course, what I considered the best of my work in Photography, Graphic Design and Advertising that would also demonstrate that I would be helpful and a valuable asset in DVF studio.

Determination & ambition
I flew in to NY the night before just for this interview. That should make obvious that I really, really wanted this job, but I still maintained my confidence and calm, not to appear as desperate. I came to the area early to know where I was meeting and to avoid any possibility of being tardy. (My interview was at 4:00 pm, 3:55 I was at the door of the Studio)

Practice and study
I practiced answers to questions that they might ask. I practiced my smile and my hand shake.

I have to confess, until then; I didn’t know who Diane von Furstenberg was. But now I know more about her than probably most of her employees. I think.

I memorized important names in the company and their faces. I even googled the person who I thought was going to interview me.

I was confident about my skills… I don’t want to sound arrogant, but even though I feel I have much to learn still, I know I have talent, and I know I will be great at this job.

I even recognized my weakness, which are, confidence that my experience is enough, but in this business one should be always learning so I don't think it will be ever enough, and my accent… perhaps… I don't know, many people said it’s "charming" and makes me unique… so it is also my strength.

So there I was… who would have guess that I was going to be where I was, in New York... being considered…

It's hard not to look back in my life and not be amaze... and the funny thing is that I was excited and amaze over nothing, because I was just being 'considered'... but still I never even thought I could even...

"Orlando?" I get startled again by hearing my name. A very laid-back-looking girl walked towards me extending her hand. I quickly stood up and with excitement and a smile in my face I shook her hand.

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