|L2R: Rania, Jacqueline, Me, Maia, Lindsey, Kumi & Bolorma|
We lie the loudest when we lie to ourselves. ~Eric Hoffer
Between whom there is hearty truth, there is love. ~Henry David Thoreau
Peace if possible, but truth at any rate. ~Martin Luther King. Jr.
Tell the children the truth. ~Bob Marley
The man who fears no truths has nothing to fear from lies. ~Thomas Jefferson
If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything. ~Mark Twain
Men occasionally stumble over the truth, bust most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened. ~Winston Churchill
The truth is incontrovertible, malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end; there it is. ~Winston Churchill
Truth is by nature self-evident. As soon as you remove the cobwebs of ignorance that surround it, it shines clear. ~Mahatma Gandhi
There is not a truth existing which I fear or would wish unknown to the world. ~Thomas Jefferson
Hurt me with the truth-but never comfort me with a lie.
Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but, it'll always get you the right ones.~
Hurt me with the truth-but never comfort me with a lie.
Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but, it'll always get you the right ones.~
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Delta Job Interview
Bear with me because this blog is not just for those of you wondering how my interview went but also for my memories sake (and anyone else desperately trying to find information about the Flight Attendant (FA) process like I was)! I am finally ready to share my experience with Delta Airlines...
As some of you already know, I applied for a FA position with Delta Airlines back at the end of September. My application was officially completed with a 10 year work history by November 3rd & then I proceeded to wait two more months. By the end of December I had given up hope that I had made it past the application process given our current economy.
(As this is a blog about truth & honesty) I'm deciding to share this little tidbit with everyone which may or may not be a big mistake. But here goes everything: On New Years day, I had a brownie for the 2nd time in my life because I hadn't been sleeping very well. I don't do drugs & have never smoked a thing in my life. To this day I still have not smoked or tried any other drug nor do I plan to again. These last few months (weeks really) have further solidified my resolve to never do drugs. Unfortunately, I made the decision to eat that brownie knowing full well what it contained. On January 9th, I received a phone call from Delta. They were giving me a phone interview.! I returned their call the next day & to my surprise was offered a F2F (face to face) in Atlanta, GA. I answered somewhere around 4-5 behavioral/situational questions (i.e "tell me about a conflict you had recently, how it was resolved, etc." or "a passenger on the plane appears to be intoxicated, what would you do?") Remembering the brownie, I freaked out & called my friend to ask how worried I should be about UA results if I were given a job offer the day of the interview....26 days after the fact. I was assured that there'd be nothing to worry about because I'm not a regular user. Delta flew me out the 26th where I proceeded to have my first official Couchsurfing experience (those of you who have kept up with my blog will know exactly how that went it's now the only way to travel)! Altogether fantastic but nerve-wracking. For most of January & up until today I have been a bundle of nerves.
Upon arriving to the interview 45 minutes early...I was met by about 20 other candidates already in the lobby. Everyone looked the part & proceeded to invite me to join the "name game." While I learned everyone's name & where they were from it dawned on me that many of them seemed perfectly at ease & no one was nearly as nervous as I was except for maybe 2 or 3 other candidates. When I asked how many in the room had prior FA experience, nearly everyone raised their hand except for the 2 or 3 of us who looked nervous to be there. They seemed surprise to learn that this was my first FA interview. The next 5 hours were a whirlwind of Delta's spirit of service & 40+ applicants all on our best behavior. We were given name tags & taken to a different building in groups of ten to ride an elevator to the "Sky Lounge" a strategically laid out room with three different seating/standing areas, a counter exactly like the ones you see in airport check-ins, numbered doors along two walls, a large projector & several smaller TV screens assembled near the ceiling. We were greeted warmly by what must of been 30 current Delta FA's dressed in their designer uniforms who lined all four walls of the large rectangular Sky Lounge. Refreshments were provided in one corner while we shook hands with every single FA, many of whom would later become our interviewers.
They encouraged us to mingle & help ourselves to the refreshments for about ten minutes then two FA gave us an official welcome & told us over 120,000 applications had been received. We did a little cheer (literally it was like a cheer you would see at a high school football game) which was GREAT. The atmosphere was completely fun & laid back but they did heed us by stating we would be on "stage" from thereon out. They explained that from the welcome point we would go into watch a mini video presentation about Delta. After the video, we were required to introduce ourselves to the entire group stating our full name, where we are from, what other languages we might speak & what we currently did for work.
My introduction went something like this: Hello everyone :). WAHOO!!!! [threw my hand up in the air] 120,000 applicants! Oh yeah....! That's what Kerry (she was the FA who ran our orientation session) told us we should do today whenever we get nervous right? ;) (Thank God everyone laughed) My name is Nina Ly Lau & I was originally born in Seattle although I grew up in Forks, WA. And no, I am not a werewolf nor a vampire but I am Team Edward. :) Anyone who hasn't a clue to what I'm talking about is more than welcome to find me later. I currently reside in Bellingham where I recently graduated from Western Washington University & am a server at a local sports bar. I'd just like to say good luck to everyone & I'm very excited to be here! Oh, I also speak Cantonese in addition to English but you wouldn't want me translating in a doctor or law office! Thanks!"
Oh God. Did I ramble enough??? :/ Everyone was funny and most were very poised & graceful. I didn't have a chance.
As the day wore on, I learned that they had already hired on 1250 new recruits even though the original instructions were to hire only 1200. At that point, Delta's recruiting team could not tell us how many more they were looking to hire only that they would be done with the interviewing process by the end of February & the last training session would begin in March. My chances weren't that good. Given the sheer number of applicants I was glad to have even made it to a F2F.
The rest of the day we were split into three different groups: A, B & C. Group A would begin their with their interviews. Each candidate would be interviewed by two current Delta FA who had gone through special training to be interviewers. The interview would consist of 5 behavioral questions & then we would be given a situation. They would expect us to answer in the STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) format. Group B (my group) would do a fit & reach test. All that was was a cabin/overhead reach test to make sure we would be able to secure the cabin (I assume anyway) then we had to sit down & buckle ourselves in (probably to make sure we could fit) hence fit & reach. Then they took a full body shot & a headshot. Group C would have the opportunity to ask questions about the life of a FA, what benefits, work schedules & lifestyles should be expected. Group A rotated into the orientation, Q&A session while Group B (me) went into my interview.
Stacy & Lindsay interviewed me. When I finished my interview I really felt like I had been in a bubble or something. It all seemed like I was in a daze I was so nervous. I felt like I could have done much better & given better answers to the questions. I thanked them & then nervously sat through my last session. Training would be 7 weeks long with most days spent in 10+ hours of training. 3 of those weekends we would fly on a domestic flight job shadowing another FA. There would be 23 written tests & 9 performance based tests all of which would require a 90% or higher for a passing grade. The final would require 100% proficiency. After the 7 weeks, a graduation would be held for all passing trainees & Delta flies select family members for the occasion. We would get to choose someone to pin our wings.
Gosh I wanted it so bad then & I want it so bad still.
Kerry said some of us would leave the interview that day not knowing for up to 3 more weeks that we were successful because there may be holes in our paperwork. Some of us would know very shortly & would be offered a CJO (Contingent/conditional Job Offer) that day.
We finished our last session and were told we could go back out into the Sky Lounge & mingle while we awaited further instructions. Other candidates said they felt like their interviews went well. I remember saying I would rather find out that day, good or bad whether I got the job because I would rather know I did't than be left wondering for three more weeks. In which case, I was as good as done. Nervously scanning the room, I remembered that I'd read on a prior forum that at this point, some of the people receiving CJOs would be quietly selected & taken to another room. Grace, the lady who first introduced herself to me in the lobby & invited me to join their name game seemed like a SHOO-IN from the get go. She currently works for United or American Airlines. A slender, older woman full of grace, experience, & great conversation, she would be hired for sure I thought. When a FA came over & pulled her away from our little group, I tried desperately to eavesdrop. She came back & I asked "So are you in?!" "No, he was just coming over to say it was nice to meet me...yada da da" and I wondered is she just saying that because she has to keep it quiet??
Ugh. Forget it Nina, you don't have a chance. And that's when Stacy, one of my interviewers walked over....
Without a trace of a smile or a twinkle in her eye, she said "Nina you'll have to come with me because there's some paperwork you have to complete still." Not daring to hope I followed her to one of the small numbered doors & inside stood 3 more FAs & only one other girl. No one was smiling. I exchanged looks with the other girl (Lindsey) but could not gauge any more from her expression than from my own. More candidates were shuffled into the room until there were 10 of us total. 3 FAs & 7 scared candidates.
Randy introduced himself & said, "First of all, relax, take a deeeeep breath because no one is in trouble." the room exhaled, we'd all been holding our breath! He continued, "In fact, you're all being offered a job." (I don't remember if those were the exact words but you get the point!!!!)
I was being offered a job!!!!! We jumped, we hugged, we shook hands, we almost cried! We were soooSO happy. They congratulated us & welcomed us into the Delta Family!!! Smiling so hard, my face hurt, they opened the door to the original 30 FAs all clapping, congratulating & hugging us. A tremendous welcome. It was one of the greatest moments of my life. Seriously. I know I'm a cheese & a goofball. But seriously! WOW. I LOOOOOVED it. There was so much happiness in the room & on my face I nearly burst into tears again. I was shaking from excitement filling out the rest of the paperwork at their HR office. They fingerprinted us, we had to do UAs & 3 of us had to catch our flights at 7:25PM!!! It was already after 6pm by the time I was ready to pee in a cup. Good thing the airport was only 10 minutes away. (But I ended up missing my flight anyway by only a few minutes. My seat had been given away. Sweating like a pig I had to head back down the terminal 10 gates to get my flight changed only to be told to pick up the phone behind the people & call somebody else. Haha oh well, I was still elated)
I called my mom & told her the great news but not before I lied to her & said I hadn't gotten it. :)
Now those of you who've been wondering all this time are probably mad at me. But I didn't say anything for a reason. Because STILL. I hadn't passed my UA. All it would take is a trace of it to show up & I would have failed. These last 2 weeks since my interview have been a pain!!!. A CJO was no guarantee I would get a job. :/ Happiness died down I've been hoping & praying & wishing that Delta would call me back already. They finally did today.
On January 27th after flying to Atlanta, GA for a 5-hour interview session I wrote:
The DELTA FAMILY IS AMAZING!!!! :)
What a trip. I'm in. One of 7 to have been given a CJO.
Its a wonder to me how/why people have so much faith in me....
I'm still trying to process everything. Still trying to get a grip on the fact that out of 120 THOUSAND applicants, I've been given this HUGE opportunity to work for Delta Airlines. I can't wait. I have a feeling I'll like Atlanta very much. I can't wait. Almost cried today when they told me the news. Pulling only seven of us from our group of nearly 50 or more candidates today. I just can't believe my fortune. And it does make me wonder absolutely why me? Out of all the other qualified applicants, why me? Wow. It's still hitting me in waves. I couldn't stop SHAKING when we were filling out the rest of our paperwork & completed our applications. Drug test, fingerprints & we were off. Then of course, I still missed my flight by a few minutes. Lol. What a day. But man, WHAT A DAY.! I cannot describe how ecstatic & elated and just plain old GREAT it felt to be greeted by all those FA who have worked for Delta for years. It's really inspiring & quite amazing. I mean they've been at this interview process since OCTOBER with anywhere from 50-70 candidates in each 5 hour session twice a day. That's insane. Absolutely insane. But SO fantastic. Wow. They welcomed us and gave us hugs and it was altogether SO great. What a wonderful feeling. Honestly, just imagine. The numbers themselves were enough to make me a COMPLETE bundle of nerves today. And all I kept hearing was "don't forget to just BE YOURSELF"
How wonderful. Service from the heart. This fits perfectly into what I believe service should be. Oh Mt. Adams. Good memories. I'm glad that so far, Delta seems to have it spot on with its spirit of service. I REALLY like that. I just cannot believe I am sitting here with my whole life before me & an entire world of opportunity: Doors wiiiide open. I'm relishing in this moment which is sure to be one of the sweetest most proudest moments of my life. Seriously. To be asked to join such an elite sky team has to be the best thing that has happened to me thus far. That and realizing life isn't all about me. :) No seriously. Truly having faith in God & realizing that there's so much more to life than just you or me.
Faith in humanity restored, I'm looking forward to everything that may or may not happen to me from here on out.
Truth be told, of course I would have been SERIOUsly bummed if I hadn't gotten a job offer right away today. Ugh the thought of waiting up to THREE whole weeks to hear anything back from Delta after a F2F is just freaky. I did not stop being nervous ONCE today. Insane. Just insane. I feel for the people who were not offered jobs. There were some REALLY wonderful candidates that I was sure would have made it. But I guess….nope, I really don't have a clue as to why our particular bunch was chosen. Besides some of the more obvious reasons like that some of us speak another language of use & all the ladies seem very competent & altogether wonderful. I do speak Cantonese but I did not apply for a Cantonese speaking position. I applied for a non-bilingual position. Which makes me wonder whether me speaking Cantonese has anything to do with it at all.
I still won't believe all this is real until I'm back at the training center. 100%. Anything less is unacceptable. They have an 85% success rate out of training. If everything checks out and I make it that far I will certainly plan on being in that 85% and top of my class. It's no time for nonsense. This is a sense of direction more than I've had in a loooong time. I can only imagine all the adventures that await!
Ahh. I MADE IT.
Now... if you're still with me. Delta called me back today. It's official. I start training March 14th.
!!!! WOWWWWWW. !!!! Stay tuned for training highlights. :)
Here's a pic of me & the "Delta 7" below after we filled out all the additional paperwork at HR:
(And FTR of course I didn't dress like that for my interview! That photo may come when I get my head & body shots from Delta)
WAHOOO!!!!!! It's time to see the world!!! Sorry to everyone who I left in the dark & thank you to everyone who had faith in me. I can't wait to share my experiences with you & perhaps take you on a trip or two or three with me!!!!
Alaska, Greece, Vietnam & Thailand. Those have been on my list for awhile. :)