Now that I’ve had few weeks to separate from the experience, I can reflect on my first CarFreeBrad international interview to determine what I learned from it.
I learned so much from the experience but one lesson stands out and bares repeating and publishing here. Preparation, preparation, preparation!
One of my favorite phrases of all time and one I utter at least 10 times each day is “you never know”. I’m a voracious preparation person in all aspects of my life because being ready allows me to capitalize on any opportunity that may present itself be it professional, personal or social.
Well, I was lulled into complacency on this one. Not to make excuses(but every time I say that excuses follow) there were a number of factors that distracted me from the task at hand and allowed me to relax. I was at the tail end of an intense business learning experience in Sweden, spent the whole day prior walking around in 90 degree heat with all my bags trying to find my Copenhagen hostel then had to rush across the city to get there in time. But I really dropped the ball because I wasn’t sure who I would be interviewing. Based on the fact that I wouldn’t be meeting my main contact at the sperm bank I assumed that I would get a few minutes to see the bike and talk to some generic staff members and be on my way.
The fact remains “you never know” and my contact at the sperm bank was a wealth of information with all the firsthand knowledge and experience that I could have ever asked for. I didn’t have my questions prepared to dig in and get to the those deeper levels and ended up with what I had prepared for; a really interesting but rather generic interview. If it hadn’t been for the forthcoming and intelligent comments of my contact, the interview would have fallen dangerously close to boring category.
“Failing to prepare, is preparing to fail”. Corny and overused but still true!