I Interviewed at Walmart

My name is Jerome Powell and I'm a 22-year-old student majoring in Business and Marketing at Bluefield State College. I applied for a cashier position at Walmart in February 2010.

To apply, I went to a Walmart store and completed a job application on a small computer in the employee break area at the back of the store. Three days after applying, I called the store back and asked if I could speak with a manager.

I told the manger that I had applied a few days ago for a cashier position and she immediately asked me when I could come in for an interview. I scheduled it for 9AM the next morning.

I didn't do any prior research before the interview, however, a friend of mine that worked at the local Walmart had already told me that there were a few positions available.

I wore a white button-down shirt, khaki pants and black dress shoes to the interview. I skipped the tie. On my way to the interview I must admit I felt a little nervous -- here I was, back home from school with parents nagging me to get a job. I thought a job at Walmart would be a respectable choice, plus they paid very competitive wages for someone who didn't have a college degree.

Sitting -- and waiting

When I arrived, I asked a woman working at the customer service counter where to go. She asked my name and told me to take a seat in an old steel folding chair.

At this point, my heart was pounding and I was losing my confidence. I sat outside in the folding chairs for approximately 45 minutes before the manager finally greeted me and invited me to her office. She asked me some simple questions about my background and work history for five minutes or so and then sent me back to the folding chair to wait. By this time I was so nervous that sweat started to roll down my forehead.

I remember staring straight ahead for another long period of time before the same manager returned to take me to a small conference room where six of her colleagues were waiting.

I shook everybody's hand, feeling a bit intimidated, and then took a seat with the managers sitting side by side staring back at me. Then they began to fire off questions like, "Describe the last time you had to show leadership in a group," and, "When was the last time that you did something that you thought was impossible?" and so on.

Answering -- then waiting

I'm embarrassed to say that each time one of the managers asked me a question, I looked them directly in the eye and told them a bold-faced lie! I was sure by their expressions that they knew I was lying.

After that question-answer session, I had to wait another 10 minutes before the first manager escorted me back to her office once again. This time she told me that they felt that I was a great fit for the position. I was amazed.

After all that, I decided to take an offer with another company instead.

I would advise anyone who would like a career at Wamart to be 100 percent honest on the application, follow up a few days later to schedule an interview, arrive five minutes early, and allow plenty of time for the interview, because you may end up sitting and waiting.

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