Monday, April 9, 2007

Beware the Gilded Cage

"I've got a great opportunity for you. You can be the right-hand for the owner of the ultra-premium estate winery in Santa Barbara. The winery property is first class all the way--with an office and tasting room with panoramic views of the valley. With the cult status of the wines, your job is pretty much done for you already. All you need to do is show up at work, support the owner in his day to day operations, and work at a fabulous winery."

Easy sell isn't it. When you hear about an opportunity that is too good to be true, it probably is. Every position has drawbacks. While this position sounded great at first, upon learning more about it, it became harder and harder to place someone there in good faith. And selling the position was the easy part--getting someone to stay in the position was the hard part.

When you are looking for a job, make sure you kick the tires and do a gut check before signing on. Even though it may feel like a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work at--are there are questions that haven't been answered to your satisfaction? This winery position had lots of red flags. The property was very remote--meaning that you would be working alone for the majority of the time, and getting out for lunch or errands would require planning. The property was spectacular, but the job was a bit tedious. So while you're looking out over the vineyards, you'd be thinking about your next spreadsheet to rework. And then there were the co-workers.

So get beyond the beautiful setting or name of the winery, and make sure you are comfortable working there. The views will get old--and so will the drudgery if it isn't what you wanted to do. This gilded cage is still vacant. Interested?

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