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Search - "first impressions matter"
An intern made a very bad impression on the first day.
This was before I become a developer. I was working in commercial art sales. One day, I had an appointment to onboard two new interns together.
Intern 1 shows up and I ask her for her signed confidentiality agreement. The boss had sent it out a week before and told me the interns were bringing the signed paperwork on their first day. I see the surprised look on her face and she says she forgot. She’s lucky I had access to another copy. If I didn’t, things could have gotten pretty awkward if I had to contact my boss, who was out of office. If there’s no signed agreement, I can’t onboard her and I’d have to send her home. The appointment was made with intern 1’s availability in mind, so intern 1 could have spent her time coming to the office for nothing and being turned away because of a stupid mistake she made.
While we wait for intern 2 to arrive, I try to engage in small talk with intern 1. I try to get to know her a little better and I ask “are you still in college/university?” She word vomits that she thought she had graduated, but six months later she hadn’t received her diploma and she called the school and they told her her pre-college credits had not transferred, so she’s finishing those credits now.
Oh, intern, you should have just simplified all this to “I’m finishing up my degree” or “yes, I’m still in college.” This is TMI. You don’t want to give out information about yourself that could put you in a bad light. You need to know to be discreet about yourself. You’re 22 years old. It’s really bad judgement to say this to your supervisor (me) and we’ve only known each other for ten minutes. I’m not your friend, I’m your supervisor. Honestly, I thought the explanation didn’t make sense because she would have found out about the credits when she tried to transfer them and when she applied for graduation. I didn’t prod for more details.
I did have to tell my boss about intern 1 forgetting the paperwork. It’s not something the intern would be reprimanded for, but it is something that’s not a good sign. The paperwork had been sent by the boss a week prior. It’s troublesome that an intern would forget to complete an important task that was sent by the boss. This was never a problem with prior interns.
Boss did freak out because boss thought I onboarded intern 1 without intern agreeing to the confidentiality agreement. Boss hadn’t considered an intern would forget the paperwork and didn’t tell me what to do if this did happen. I reassured boss that I had printed a new copy and had intern 1 sign the agreement.
I didn’t say anything about the word vomit. The content was troubling, but I was concerned this would be gossip and I wasn’t out to sabotage the intern.
Forgetting the paperwork and the word vomit were signs the intern wasn’t reliable. Intern had trouble taking direction even when it was written down. She’d do stupid things like invite her boyfriend to the office for hours and let BF sit at the boss’s desk—boss caught her and boss’s office is visible from our public viewing floor, so visitor did see this too. I suspected she might have an diagnosed learning disability.
In the end, intern didn’t ask for a reference letter. Boss said that if intern asked for one in the future, the answer would be no.
Intern 1 is the reason why I don’t want to be in change of interns ever again even though I’m not in art sales anymore.17
This got me wondering...
Was shown a product today, doesn't matter what it was, because that part is irrelevant for question. Just out of unsubstantiated curiosity, I'm curious to hear other opinions .
How do you judge a product during first impressions period? Doesn't matter if it's a piece of software, gadget, food product, or all of the aforementioned at the same time.
As I just said - I was shown a product today, well, okay ... not in-person, and not actually shown, rather, made aware of a product. And after looking at it, I realized, that I can no longer look at a product and not focus on "red flags" or look for "where's the catch?". This product, that I'll just keep referring to as "the product" for the sake of keeping it neutral, was unfamiliar to me - I know nothing of it's manufacturer, so any trust to the brand is non-existant, the product brief on the website only made me question every marketing bulletpoint claim they had listed, aņd it didn't make me interested enough to go look up feedback from other users. This drew my attention to the realization that I do this with everything - I only look for whatever i'm looking for... I no longer pay any attention to discovery or suggestions. If I'm looking for HW, I'll focus on what it can and cannot do for the price and the actual first impression will form from using it, if it's SW - same deal, but actual first impression will form based on cross-platform compatibility, state/quality of documentation. Oppose to me, back in the day, where I'd just pick it up irregardless and "flubbed it" along somehow until it worked out.4