A new job

This morning I’m beginning a new job. It took 18 meetings at 12 different companies in 3 intensive weeks to get there. Towards the end of it, I felt quite exhausted. I didn’t feel like starting a new process with a company when I’m in serious negotiations with 3 others.

The finals includes 3 companies who offered me a job, almost at the same time. 2 proposed on Tuesday afternoon, and one on Wednesday at noon. I got the third offer only after putting some pressure on them. They didn’t have the results of my personality tests till Wednesday noon. By that time I was already supposed to give an answer to one of the other companies.

The three offers were quite similar moneywise. The differences were elsewhere: In the size of the companies, the spirit and the geography. I finally chose the one that was closest to my house. Well, that wasn’t the sole consideration. It also seemed the most fun place to work in, and the technology varies. I turned down an offer to work in a more senior position. I turned it down since I prefer a smaller company (which is supposedly more fun). I’m also not really looking for a career. I don’t see myself as a manager.

When I gave a negative answer, both companies that I turned down tried to convince me to change my mind. I tried to convince them that they weer both good companies and that their offers were good. I told them that I would have chosen them if they were the only offers around. I wouldn’t have continued searching. I said that because I really think so. And, I might meet them in the future, so its better to be remembered in a positive way.

Well, on Thursday afternoon, after signing the contract, I took myself to the sea, to enjoy the last days of summer and of my long vacation, 4 months. Anyway, I hope that I made the right choice. During the time that I was considering all the offers, I was thinking quite intensively and consulting lots of people. This intensity also got into my dreams, for two nights! Damn. I can never tell if I made the right choice, but I can always think it over about “what would happen if…”, but its endless and useless.

What will happen to this blog? Now that my free time will be reduced from 100% to somewhere less than 50%, I will have much less time for this rambling. I believe that I’ll continue writing. I already got used to it, and I enjoy it, even if it’s mostly writing to myself. I still owe a post about a post war visit to the north and some more stuff…

I’ll also try to write about the first days of work…

So hot outside and in the job market

Summer in Tel Aviv has become harsher. More hot and more humid. I think that they reported it in the news. Well, now that the war is over, the heat can raise it’s head.

Instead of continuing my duties as a bum, I find myself running from between job interviews. I was expecting many interviews and a good job market, but this is really intense. As I previously wrote, only one HR company is taking care of me. I could have contacted 5 good companies such as this, but I found that one is enough. I’ve already been to 11 meetings in 9 different companies.

Running between job interviews can be very tiring. Especially when the air conditioner in my car gets tired at noon time, in the hottest hours. When I go out in the morning, I have to take an extra shirt or two, so I can change and show up properly to these interviews. It’s not that I have to be all dressed up for a programmer’s position. I come with sneakers, jeans and a t-shirt, like a normal Israeli programmer looks like. I just prefer that my appearance will not include sweat stains…

It’s also tiring to tell about myself over and over again. When they ask me to tell about myself, I just ask if to start from the end or from the beginning of my professional carreer, and then I just turn on the auto pilot. I started saying no to companies over the phone. I feel free to reject a company just by its name or geographical location. More than 30 minutes drive became a no-no.

This could be a bubble. I don’t know. The vast amount of jobs reminds me of the happy bubble days, but on the other hand, many companies do intense testing for every candidate. There are many jobs out there, but the road to signing a contract isn’t that short.

So where do things stand? Currently there are 3 companies that I’m enthusiastic about.

The first one took me through 2 sessions which included doing 2 tests and being interviewed by 4 people. And it isn’t over yet. They are sending me to some kind of personality tests in a special institute. It’s an 8 hour day that includes exams, a personal interview and a group session. I have never been asked to undergo such terrible exams. Many people consider these exams as torture. Well, there’s always a first time. Anyway, I liked the company, so I hope I’ll make it.

The second company called me for two sessions. One was a professional interview which I passed, and the second one was with a more senior manager. Everything seems good there. They were impressed from me, and I was impressed from them. The second meeting, which was today seemed like a perfect date. It was so positive. Except kissing at the end, it was really like a very successful date. I’m waiting for a third meeting with the big boss, and then for a job offer.

The affair with third company began just yesterday. I got there through a friend who told me lots of good stories about his workplace. He got me the interview (the only one not through the HR company). He convinced me that this is a good place to work at. The problem is, that the guy that interviewed me hardly asked me any questions and wasn’t certain if he had an opening in his team. Originally, he wan’t supposed to meet me, so he wasn’t prepared. He also jsut returned from reserve service in Lebanon, so he was somewhat confused. Since this process is only at the beginning, I guess I’ll have to sniff around in order to get an answer soon. I don’t want to hold up other places while waiting for an answer from this place. Tactics.

And other places? All the other places were ok, but not so great. Some want to call me up for another meeting and some didn’t answer yet. Rejection? Not yet, but today I had a really bad interview. I’m sure that this will result in my first rejection letter.

If my calculations are correct, and things will continue on the positive side, I’ll probably have to make a decision next week. I hate decisions !

Upcoming ceasefire and how it doesn’t matter in Tel Aviv

Today marked a full month since the beginning of the conflict. The Israeli death toll is at around 130, and I think we’ve passed the 1000 mark on the other side. Lots of people are badly wounded, and their lives are destroyed. The economic damage is enormous, and is currently hard to figure (and doesn’t receive too much coverage). There is already a UN resolution, and at the time of the writing, also the Lebanese government confirmed it. Tomorrow morning (Sunday) my government will also confirm it. It is supposed to start on Monday at 7:00 AM local time, which is midnight in New York.

So why does the fighting go on? I don’t know what’s going on on the other side, but I have lots of criticism on my government for raging on with a last minute operation. It is already reported that 11 soldiers were killed today, after the UN decision,  plus an unknown number of casualties in helicopter crash (probably hit by Hizbullah).

The headlines of the Israeli online news services in Hebrew say that this is a last effort to “win” and to reach the Litani river. But why? All the territory that will be held will require maintanence by many soldiers, until they will be replaced by the Lebanese army or multinational force. This endangers them and also costs a lot of money (for reserve soldiers). I don’t get it.

In the middle of the last week, just a few days ago, I began job searching. I decided that I should attend my bank account. I started slowly and contacted only one agency. That’s how it work in hitech jobs in Israel. You usually don’t apply to a company directly, but go through a “middleman”. These agencies, do all the filtering work for the hiring company, and get paid by them. It costs the worker anything. I know at least 5 good agencies like this, out of tens that are operating.

Anyway, I sent my CV only to one of them. They called me immediately, thanking me, and said they would check around. OK, take your time.

Suddenly I was stormed with phone calls. I had one interview on Thursday and I have 5 more for next week. I guess that more interviews will be set up during the week. It’s amazing. I am definitely not a great specialist or an extraordinairy professional. It’s the market, not myself. There is a great boom in the Israeli hitech industry, and it seems that also a month of war didn’t do anything to stop it. Even the slow month of August, when many Israelis take a vacation (well not like in Europe) doesn’t stop the great job market.

I am happy that it is this way, at least for myself. It’s nice being wanted, having job security. On a broader look, it isn’t so good. It just shows the extreme gaps that exist in Israel. The past years have seen economic growth. American economic growth. It affected only a small layer in society. The current war just widens the gap. While almost a third of the country’s population are stranded in shelters (if they have where to run to), the people living in the center of Israel still enjoy prosperity.

Something to think about, as soon as the ceasefire starts.