Security Concepts: Job Interview

Update July 2010: Well I gave them the benefit of the doubt, but this company has repeatedly failed to improve their standing in the community, or reign in their employees. I strongly urge any prospective employee to reconsidering pursuing this company as an option.

Update November 2009: Since I wrote this post I have had a chance to visit the new Security Concept offices on Wellington St. While what follows is an accurate representation of what I experienced in July 2009, I can honestly say that the company has changed many of their practices since then. I would urge you not to judge the company on my experiences alone.

It’s taken me a bit of time to get to the story of my job interview on Monday, but I promised.

Like I mentioned, I totally forgot about applying for this job, which should have been warning sign number one. The interview was scheduled for 2:30 at 149 King St, the corner of King and Richmond in downtown London. The company was Security Concepts, and they claimed to be an authorized ADT dealer. When I called to confirm the interview I was told I was interviewing for a sales position, warning sign number 2.

So at 2:20 I parked at Covent Garden Market and started looking for the office. It took me a while because it was hidden in a rundown building, between two nicer looking office towers. There were temporary signs throughout the building directing me to the Security Concepts office, warning sign number 3.

I walked through the door into a room 10 ft by 10 ft with about 15 people in it, there was a women sitting behind a crappy looking desk who directed me to another room when she heard I was there for an interview. Warning sign 4.

There were 17 other people in that room, all there for an interview, that was going to take place as a group.

There was a man in a Security Concepts polo shirt giving a powerpoint, no, reading a powerpoint presentation about the company.

We had to go around the room and introduce ourselves and tell our work experience. You could tell that any hopes, dreams or ambitions that anyone in that room had ever had were long gone.

Polo shirt man filled us in on the details of Security Concepts. Did you know that they give you the security system?!?! All you pay is the $99.99 activation fee and then your $34.99 a month afterwards!! And for each system you as a rep sell, you earn $200! Most of their salesmen sell at least one a day, working 5 days a week, thats $1000 a week, or $52,000 a year.

“That’s more money then some of you have ever made”

Warning signs 5,6,7,8……

Then we had to pull out our resumes and on the back give a number, 1 being you don’t want to work with them and 10 being you really did. Then write a paragraph about why they should hire you.

Polo shirt man left the room and would return to do one on one interviews. Before he did that he asked for a show of hands for how many people could start today. He acknowledged one particularily anxious man with a nod and a “thank-you”

I took this as my cue to leave.

Update:

Since I wrote this post I received comments from people on their way to interviews who have thanked me for sparing them the trouble. This was because I ranked quite high on Google searches for Security Concepts and job interviews.

I sent an email to the company informing them of this, and offering my services. They decided to take it upon themselves to comment on my blog. I applaud this move, but they failed miserably.

Security Concepts still has no credibility as an employer. They’ve hid behind anonymous comments, and have engaged in a “he-said, she-said” battle. Never mind the fact that their SEO and SEM is horrendous (or non existent)

Update: Well I thought that the comments to this post were bad enough….Apparently some employees have decided to attack me personally (click to enlarge).

Facebook Privacy and Canada

The current buzz in Facebook news today is the report released by the Canadian Privacy Commissioner in which she finds that “Facebook needs to improve privacy practices” and has given them 3o days to comply. Putting aside the ridiculous assumptions that a Canadian bureaucrat should have any say in a Social Networking site, there are a few points in her report and in Facebook’s practices that I want to address.

One of commissioner Jennifer Stoddart‘s comments was that Facebook needs to be transparent with their users. This is a great point that has been made by critics of the “walled garden” approach for quite some time. Facebook had addressed this issue by become more open, listing accounts on Google, and granting usernames. But this was another point of contention.

According to Ms Stoddart, users should have their accounts completely private – no sharing outside your network – unless they opt in. Now, my gut reaction is to see this as antithesis to the notion of Social Media. If you sign up for a Facebook account, you are saying that you want to be “found” on the internet, and to share you pictures, stories and life, with anyone who wants to. That is the social aspect of Social Media.

I could be completely out to lunch here, in fact I probably am. But I wanted to start a discussion. How much privacy is too much privacy (in Social Media)? Does the Commissioner have any jurisdiction over Facebook?

First Job Interview

As I go through the job searching process I made the concious decision to “new media” the process of at least one job oppurtunity.

I’m going to write blog posts, upload pictures, and tweet the eperience as I pursue employment. My first interview is with Security Concepts for a sales job.

To be honest I forgot that I had applied for this job until I got the phone call yesterday. I had to go back to the Job Bank site to see what the job was. I’m kind of interested to see how the interview goes. I do have a couple of questions though; pay and hours etc.

Wish me luck.

How To Save The Newspaper Industry

I don’t think that the newpaper will ever disappear.

I do think that think  most of them will/should become weekly papers. Get ride of the pretense about delivering “news”. A weekly newspaper would become a source of insight and commentary on world news and local events.  The paper would have more thoughtfull articles and detailed investigative journalism. Nevermind the financial benefits.

If you think about it, most sections of a daily paper are day-specific, and would still feel fresh 4 days later .

I started thinking about this when I realised my podcast habits. I don’t rush out and download the latest BOL or TWiT as soon as its realised. That is because they are providing commentary on technology news that is still relevant one or two days later.

Not that I’m a pessimist, but I give the London Free Press 5 years before its just a bigger version of the Londoner.

More Of What I Do

Since this is supposed to be a chronology of my life, and as I made the decision to talk more about social media on here, I figure it was time to give people some more information.

One of the major projects that I have been working on over the past couple of months is the London Ontario Live Arts festival. I am focusing primarily on the social media aspect, promotion before the event, actively working on content during, and following up with attendees afterwards. I’m working with a good group of people, who are going to make LOLA amazing.

I’m also doing some more work for myself; working at promoting my brand and the set of skills that I have. Social media is a great field and I’m struggling to determine how I fit in to the big picture. I’m not an expert (no one is), but I have knowledge that can really help.

Radio Personalities

As I was driving around today I came to the realisation: it would really suck to be a music radio disc jockey now.

Back in the 60’s and 70’s I imagine it was an amazing job. You were one of the go to people for musical taste and relevant cultural information. People listened to the radio because of the DJs not inspite of them.

Now we have DJs who sound more like salesman who are being told to pitch item x. When they talk about a movie they “saw” on the weekend, I can’t help but think they are reading a script. Once I called in to request a song and the DJ asked me if I was going to buy lottery tickets. Huh? How does that have anything to do with the Barenaked Ladies?

I don’t think we can blame the fall of the DJ on the internet though. There are still some talented jockies, Alan Cross comes to mind instantly, and George Stroumboulopoulos is good (expect ads and syndication have really ruined his show).

Nope, the reason that radio sucks in the 21st century is because most DJs don’t care about the music, or the their listeners. If you compare a college/university DJ to a mainstream one you can hear the difference. Yes, they don’t sound as professional, but they sound like they love what they are doing.

You could have a long argument about whether radio is worth saving (I do), but ultimately the only way it can succeed is if people that care are using their voices.

Job Loss – Not What Its Cracked Up To Be

Last Thursday (July 2nd) I was informed that I had been terminated from my position at BioLogic, effective immediately.

To be perfectly honest, this came as a compete surprise. I knew that business was slow, but I didn’t think that it would result in any job cuts at the firm. I’ll spare pouring out all the details on my blog.; but in my opinion things could have happened differently. I’ve gone through the full range of emotions, and I’ve accepted what happened.

I find myself with lots of time on my hands though. Aside from fixing up my resume, and submitting job applications, I have very few standing obligations.  So I hope to devote some more of my time to social media. If you think I might have some expertise to offer you, don’t hesitate to drop me a line.