After months of searching for post-college employment, I finally landed a job as a receptionist at a high-security company. I had three extremely important responsibilities: answering the phone, only letting employees with their badges in through the front door, and stocking the coffee. During my first week sitting at the front desk, an elderly man walked in and demanded that I open the door to the office (you need a keycard to open the door). I had never seen this man before, so I told him I needed to see his employee ID. This obviously offended him, and he stomped his foot on the floor like a kid having a temper tantrum and said, "I am Bob Smith." I replied, "OK Bob Smith, can I please see your employee ID?" His face started turning red, but I tried to keep my cool and pretend like I wasn’t scared or intimidated. There was a man from another one of our offices sitting in the waiting area a few feet away, and I looked to him for help. His eyes were huge and he looked shocked, but didn’t offer any backup. Bob Smith must have thought I was deaf because he again stated his name, and told me he was going to go check his mail, and I had better let him in NOW. That’s when I realized what was going on- this was a test. They were seeing if I could handle the pressure of someone trying to get in without a badge. I was going to pass this test with flying colors! After a few more minutes of arguing with Bob Smith, another employee walked through the front door, and Bob Smith slipped in behind her. The man who had been sitting in the waiting area started laughing and said, "You better go check your mail box for a pink slip!" My heart jumped up into my throat. Was I getting fired for him slipping through the door? Was I actually supposed to tackle him?! The man then asked if I knew who Bob Smith was. I told him I didn’t. I’m sure you can see where this is going- Bob Smith is the owner of the entire company. Maybe that’s something we should have gone over in my training?
That pink slip never arrived in my mail box. The owner probably found the situation funny once he had time to settle down. Or maybe he knew better than to mess with me- I proved how tough I am (all five foot one of me)!