THE BLOG

Ask Michael Cohen: Work It Out

06/16/2010 12:16 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

I recently became a fan of your column and I just had a job interview so I thought you could provide some advice on my crazy situation. I met with this really cool boutique real estate firm. The owner I interviewed with was so-freaking-hot. I was dying. We talked a lot about work of course but also personal stuff and I swear there was a connection that was a little out of the work arena. We left it off that he would call about the job and I haven't heard, but honestly, I am more interested in him than the job. I have plenty of other offers but not connections like I had with him. What to do? Sammie G., Queens New York
 
Oh, this one is simple honey. Call him and say, "I'm interested in the position but I am more interested in putting you in one." Holla! No, seriously, here's the deal. You have to play by the three-day rule, which works both in the business and dating worlds.
 
After three days it's fair game to call him. And it's okay that you had this connection because people meet in the unlikeliest of places and situations. He maybe thinking the same, but considering all the crazy sex laws he would break if he acted on his feelings. That means the ball is in your court.

Me? I would call and ask for a date, keeping in mind that at that point the job is out of the question.

Last week I went on a job interview dressed in what I felt was appropriate - the full on suit and tie. I even had my shoes polished. When I arrived everyone was dressed in their best casual Friday looks (mind you it was a Tuesday). I was clearly over dressed. Now I have been asked back for a second interview. What to do? Dress like them or stick to the suit and tie? Daryl K., Washington D.C.
 
It's not a bad thing that you wore a suit for your first interview, coming dressed as you did shows respect and is an indicator that you actually put some thought into the process. Though you must have felt slightly awkward, and maybe a bit envious that these folks were getting a paycheck yet looking like they were on vacation, your interviewers expected you to show up in a suit.
 
The second interview is a bit trickier because you still must command respect in your attire and at the same time demonstrate that you get it and that you will fit in. 

So let's just change up your suit routine. The best way to start is to ditch the tie because they are no longer power indicators. I still recommend a suit, but not one of those outdated three button numbers. Find yourself a sharp, clean two-button, notch collar suit with flat front pants. Brands like Theory do this perfectly and at really reasonable price points. Color wise, stick with a charcoal gray or navy. White shirt is a must. If you want to jazz it up and show that you understand the 'hip' factor grab a pocket square, this season's must have men's accessory.
 
And, by the way, keep those shoes shined. Good luck.

 
This week I was called for an interview for a dream job as a producer on a new network show. The problem is I am vacationing with my parents in Aspen and you know TV, you have to jump when they call. So I arranged for an interview by SKYPE. Tell me everything I need to know. Thanks so much. Allison C., New York
 
Vacationing with your parents in Aspen while everyone else works their asses off, and you want me to answer this question? I'm having a W.T.F moment because, honey, anyone really looking for a job (especially in TV) should more or less be idle and waiting by the blackberry with baited breath, no longer than a 10 minute cab ride to said interview. I truly suggest you get your ass on a plane (you're in Aspen- you have coins) and get back to New York.
 
I have digressed. Let me answer. So here is the deal with SKYPE. First, the set up: don't have your face all up in the camera. They can see you just fine.Treat this interview like any other. Turn your computer towards the wall so they aren't judging your parent's Moosehead collection. Think of your laptop camera as a person and look straight on. Sit in a chair however you would normally sit if you were being interviewed and wear what you would normally wear.
 
There is always this odd awkward delay and spasms in conversations with SKYPE. I try to talk to my do-good brother who teaches English in Korea and I have a hard time conversing like a human. Which means it's all about timing and taking deep breaths. When you ask or answer a question, wait two seconds before spewing. Don't wait one or three seconds, follow the two second rule.
 
Good luck no matter which way you interview.

You can submit your questions on my website http://askmichaelcohen.com or in the comments section here.