Cheat Sheet for Applicants

Been trying to figure out why nearly all applicants have trouble with research skills portion of job application. Someone explained his thought process while answering application questions. If his approach to problem solving and research is representative of much of working class America — I suspect it is — we are, as a nation, fucked. I’m beginning to understand why so many people can’t pass mental health tests such as the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) that are used by law enforcement agencies and hospitals.  Batshit crazy is the new norm.

This questionnaire is similar to MMPI.  Here’s an explanation of how MMPI works (not mine):

There is an untaught subject called “test psychology”. It requires you to answer questions posed with the same or similar situation, but described differently. The people that devise this kind of test deliberately ask the same basic question but using different phraseology. The primary object is to determine your consistency in responding. Unfortunately when different words are used in the second or (subsequent) question it may be interpreted by some test takers differently than that of the first. The best you can do is to read the question exactly as written and not try to guess what the question really meant. One of the reason these tests are so long is the repetition of the same basic question, sometimes in different parts of the test I believe that another reason (especially on police exams) is to determine your ability to remember earlier parts of a conversation and relate a more immediate discussion to the already provided information. If you succeed in your goal of becoming a police officer you will quickly learn that many individuals (suspects) when giving a verbal statement (especially when under stress) frequently contradict themselves. A sharp cop can pick this up and use it to further gather the facts.

Put simply, our questionnaire is a bullshit detector.  Not saying everyone who doesn’t pass it is a liar.  Studies have shown that the most incompetent tend to overrate their abilities, while the most competent underrate theirs.  (American students are notorious for overrating their academic performance).    Just saying that there’s a lot of self-deception (the result of the self-esteem movement where everyone is a winner, everyone is special).

More hints:

1. CEO and Eminem work hour questions.  I’m not asking for your opinion on how Walmart operates or if you agree with Marissa Mayer’s policies or enjoy listening to Eminem.  Nor am I asking if you  they’re paid fairly.  I don’t know if they are and it’s none of my business how much the owners of a company want to pay their CEO and other employees.  Don’t allow yourself to get distracted. Don’t allow bias to affect your thinking. Keep it simple, stay FOCUSED on the question, don’t let your mind wander off topic!

2. What am I trying to find out about you?  What sort of worldview makes one “work hard?”  Or be bitter and envious?  How does one’s perception of reality affect one’s attitude and mindset, one’s work ethic?

3. Distractions. The questionnaire is full of distractions.  Like Eminem getting his dick sucked.  Again, stay FOCUSED.  There are a lot of distractions in life.  How successful you’ll be partially depends on how focused you are on a task.

4. Question your assumptions.  DON’T PROJECT.  Just because you’d do this or that if you had a million dollars or fame doesn’t mean everyone else would do the same.  Most TV shows and movies DON’T represent reality accurately.  Your friends are not representative of every segment of society.  The other side of the fence looks very different once you’re there.

5. Review your answers.  Check for consistency.  Again, the same questions are asked over and over again, just worded differently.

If in the end, you don’t see the point of the questionnaire, think it’s irrelevant, then we’re not a match.  If you get it, and it keeps you up at night, let’s talk.

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