Monday, October 12, 2009

How Do You Answer The Passion Question?

Help me get the word Passion out of the office and back into the bedroom where it belongs!

Have you ever been in a job interview, which you thought was going great, only to get sidelined with the question, "What are you really passionate about?!" Perhaps it's because I'm a designer (I can't imagine an Doctor ever being asked this question) and people expect my brain to be overflowing with creativity. Or perhaps because I'm a designer people expect me to communicate in little sketches, who knows. One really stressful interview at a silicon valley giant, I was sidelined with the Passion Question right in the middle of talking about software design. I think I let it slip that I wasn't really that passionate about an email application I had worked on. (Please, nobody, nobody is ever passionate about email software design, let alone email, or especially software). I almost blurted out "money" in response to that question - I mean hello! interview!?! But instead of yelling out "money" (to a small group stock option lottery winners) I froze up.

I think the passion question is stupid because it's usually totally inappropriate. Does it make sense to ask a civil engineer if he's passionate about fixing sewers? Remember our friend the doctor? Nobody would ask her what she's passionate about because... a doctor is obviously all about curing the sick... so it goes without saying that I am passionate about design.

So let me ask the Blogger Community - How have you dealt with the Passion Question in your interviews? Do you think asking people this question is a good idea?

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