A look back: the week of July 21


checklistAt Google, it was common to keep weekly lists of your accomplishments. For anal retentive people (like me) these types of tasks were a dream come true. I’ve continue this habit at most of my later companies b/c it’s nice to have a record of the things that you have done. So in light of this being the end of week #2 of unemployment, I thought it would be good to start keeping a list of things I have done, particularly for friends who are wondering how I am spending my time. Sorry to strangers who may be bored by these blog entries.


1) I had a phone screen on Monday morning for an SF based firm. Not sure how I did though he mentioned company activities for the remainder of the week so feedback regarding possible next steps would be delayed.

2) Had an in-person interview on Monday afternoon with a very small (stealth mode) startup in the Peninsula area. I hadn’t applied for this job; a recruiter found my information and contacted me. I mentioned this being the impetus to my startups blog post earlier this week. While I like the idea of working in a smaller company, I think this company was too small and underdeveloped as a business for me at this point. There is a tricky thing about working at small startups, I think, particularly if the founders are leading the company and if they are technical people. I tend to think that they perceive the product as their pet project and they hold everything very close to the vest. My metaphor for this is surgeons and doctors who are asked to refrain from operating on or treating family members. Their judgment is clouded because they can’t be totally objective in that moment.

This startup needed to start developing marketing materials, which is where the role I interviewed for came in, but I got the sense that they didn’t have a business lead and that I would be left fighting a lot of those battles. I didn’t feel like I had the seniority for this and for other reason, I just didn’t feel like I was the right one for this job. In all honesty, the company should probably hire someone on a contract basis to complete the collateral. I communicated to the recruiter and pulled myself from consideration.

3) Had a casual in-person “conversation” with a potential hiring manager at an SF based company based on a referral from a former coworker.  When the layoff was announced (not even my last day at the company, but the day of the announcement), a former coworker sent me a note asking if we could catch up. Given the timing, I guessed that she wanted to see if I was interested in a role (either that or she wanted to gossip given the freshness of the pain). She introduced me to the head of a department at her company and I met with her on Thursday to talk about the company, what she has done, what she is hoping to do and what she felt were deficiencies. These types of informational interviews are kind of tricky. Because on the one hand, you aren’t sure if there are any positions actually open so you can’t really pitch yourself. On the other hand, it’s good to know that this person has some level of interest in you based on the introduction– b/c why would they otherwise be doing the interview? I have the problem of keeping myself very distant during interviews– I don’t want to get my hopes up and I don’t want to come off as desperate. I’m also generally not very animated when it comes to business dealings. So in the end, I worry that I came across as disinterested. I also generally feel weird when people help me (I know– it’s totally stupid). You’re always supposed to try to get a foot in the door via a referral or some other personal means. It’s really the best way. But part of me always feels like I need to earn the right and I probably end of subconsciously sabotaging myself because of it. In the end, this is sounding like a great opportunity; however, it’s not exactly an open job req. I wrote to the hiring manager this morning letting her know that I’m very interested and to keep me updated on developments on her team.

4) Received a response from a job I’d applied for in SF. They had sent me an exercise with questions to complete. Finished those this morning and set them off.

5) Received an email from a recruiter from a Peninsula company. Setting up times for phone interviews next week.


I mentioned that I’m trying to strike a good balance of being social while also being mindful of my money situation. I think I was pretty good this week.

1) Had Happy Hour with a former colleague in the Peninsula. She had worked at my previous company so I let her know about the layoffs and how I’m doing.

2) After my Thursday interview in SF, met up with a high school friend (who I actually have known off and on since the 3rd grade). We had drinks and it was great. Really enjoyed our hour spent catching up. After we left, I met up with two former coworkers in SF for dinner before taking public transportation home.


1) Finished the book “Mastering the Art of French Eating, Lessons in Food and Love From a Year in Paris” by Ann Mah. Loved it. I absolutely adore Paris so anytime I can read about it and reminisce, it’s pure bliss. This is the 14th book that I have read this year. My goal is 20 and it looks like I will definitely make it!

2) Trying to purge things in my house that I don’t need anymore. Hoping to have a garage sale in a couple of weeks. Sent a note to my neighbor asking if they had any problems. Moved some of the sellables form my parents’ to my house for sorting and tagging. Just sold a shirt that I no longer want on eBay.

3) Went to kick boxing class on Wednesday.


I’m having dim sum with two high school friends on Sunday so I’m definitely looking forward to that. Plan to spend the next couple of days sorting out the garage sale stuff, picking up a library book and returning some materials. Headed up to SF on Thursday to have lunch at the home of a Xoogler friend with another Xoogler friend. And probably lots more!

Hope you all have a great weekend!


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