I coached a guy a few months ago. He was one of those people that are typical of those that call me. They have everything they need to get the job, but after many tests they are missing it by just a little. So many people miss multiple jobs by less than a point or two.

After we were done, I asked him the question I ask a lot of people, “What will you do if you get multiple job offers?” He laughed, and said one would be fine.

Over the next week or two he had three tests, and in short order got three offers. Now these were three departments that would be a feather in any testing candidates hat, large, well paying, prestigous departments. The first was a very big, sought after department, the second a great place, the third was his dream department. It worked out that they had starting dates in the same order, covering a few months.

When the first department called, he accepted and started their academy. In the first week he was enjoying himself, his plan was to go to the dream department when they called, so this was like a test run with a paycheck. There was a incident at the end of the first week. His guard was down and he was accused of something. He denied it, and was asked if he was accusing that person of lying about him. He was caught in a bad situation and was let go on Monday.

Capt Bob and I were on vacation in Hawaii when he called my cell phone. My policy has always been, if you have done coaching with me, you own me. I am available any time to accept questions, calls or updates, unless I’m at work. I talked with him a few times, I had Capt. bob talk to him, he was upset and in a bad way.

He chose not to tell the second department what had happened, just that had left during probation. The problem is that even though they couldn’t find out, they always will, and did. He was let go from the process.

He called and talked to me, and then talked to Capt Bob and was at a loss as to what to do. I told him he had one choice. Go and tell the chief what happened, what he did, and how it came that he was let go. Because this was really a last chance. With a removal from an academy in the first week, you would have a hard time getting hired afterward, unless you had some great reason.

He went and talked to the chief, and I think, threw himself on the mercy of the court. I think the chief saw the great guy he had in front of him, as well as the human and let him continue.

Many people don’t understand about the multiple job offer situation. When you find the way to get your interview skills to the level that you are hitting on all cylinders, you will do well on most of the tests you take. Just like if you work hard to dominate the physical agility test, you will dominate them all. The difference is that they tell you what you will have to do in the physical, but you have to guess what the oral will be. We can assume it will be the "most asked questions", but who knows. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could take a practice oral, like that let you take a practice physical. Yea, but it won’t happen.

You need to think long and hard about what you are going to do if this happens. A common question in a chief’s interview is, “are you testing for any other departments? What are you going to do if they call you before I do?” If you have not thought this out, made your decision before hand, you could be caught flat footed and look stupid. Not something you want to do in front of the chief.

Good Luck, Captain Rob