Tell me something about yourself

Oh how different life is over here. I think this thought a heck of alot but occasionally something happens which brings it home more than ever….at the moment my senior national staff are interviewing new recruits up here.

 The ‘interviews’ generally take place in a busy ‘through route’ office so people wandering in and out throughout the entire preceeding. My guys get ALL interviewees to arrive at exactly the same time then make them wait in turn for hours on end while they do the interviews. They are all given a number on arrival and when presented to the interviewers by the guard they are introduced by their number! It’s like being prisoner!

 The interviewees come in (no pen or paper in hand!) and perch on a chair, looking like they are about to take off any second. The interviewers fire questions, occasionally chatting between themselves if one disagrees with the other about something. At one point I noticed one of the interviewers just standing up and wandering out for 5 mins or so for no particular reason!

On the first morning of interviews I was very politely asked if I would like to move out of the room they were interviewing in…we’re all a bit squashed into 2 offices at the moment …its a bit like hot desking except its more first come first served! Arrival times are getting earlier and earlier each day!

 I thought they wanted me to move because I would disturb THEM as I spoke to my other staff and had to go in and out of the room for various things….but no….they thought they would disturb ME!

 10 mins in, its all over and the next ‘number’ is brought in!

 As for our driver recruitment – my Ops Manager & Chief Mechanic are like a tag team and have been thoroughly enjoying themselves putting our potential new recruits through their paces in a very thorough interview. We have brought in the latest addition of an eye test as well as identification of various dashboard lights!

Test number2

Plus we also do a little ‘whiteboard’ scenario “what would you do if…”

 Driver interview1  

When the quizzing is done for each little scenario asks the other “are you satisfied with that senhor?”, the quizmaster thinks pensively for a moment then eventually says he is and they move on. It’s utter brilliance!

I don’t think I managed a minute of work entertained by the entire preceedings – it was all I could do to stop myself chuckling (very unprofessionally) at their technique.

I have been assured this is all very normal when it comes to recruitment in Mozambique…! It’s unusual to say the least!



  1. Ankles said,

    May 12, 2009 at 3:23 pm

    That question type must be an Africa thing…I dare you to ask ‘ what do you do if you see a baboon in the road?!’ aka the funniest question asked to me during my Swazi driving theory test! e-mail when you can bells- not sure if you’re up and running properly yet?! muchos to tell you… miss youuuuuuuu as always xxxxxxxxx

  2. Joan neil said,

    July 6, 2009 at 6:33 pm

    Hi helen, well what a girl u are mining, upholstery, farming , cooking,dog sitting is there nothing that u can’t put your hand too.I am so jealous, mmm now let me see what have I done today- sunbathing erm , no thats about it.
    Very stressful and hard lying in the sun ha ha.
    You are amazing . The mine is huge very scary I dont think I could ever get used to knowing there are mines all over the place .
    Love your curtains stripes are so in this year. well must get back to the sunbed, take care love your blogg. joan xx

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s