THE EDITOR, Sir:
The following occurrence is an indication of the signs of the time.
A 20-year-old man who has completed one year at a tertiary institution but had to sit out a year due to finance, and who is awaiting a reply from the Students' Loan Bureau, related the serious but hilarious happening when he applied for and was called for an interview for the post of a security officer with one of the many security companies. He related the following.
One hundred and thirty persons were called for 30 jobs. All the applicants smartly dressed, armed with their papers and hoping to be one of the lucky 30 to be selected, turned up for the interview which was 'conducted' by four well-built gentlemen who appeared to be ex-military personnel.
The interview went like this:
The person who appeared to be the leader of the four interviewers asked for all applicants who are ex-soldiers and ex-policemen to step forward. Fifteen persons who satisfied this criterion stepped to the front of the interviewees.
The lead interviewer, accompanied by two other interviewers, walked by the remaining interviewees and looked at them casually and within seconds said to the 100 of them simply and firmly, "Through the gate." This instruction/command was crudely enforced by the interviewers with military precision.
One slimly built interviewee when so instructed inquired of another interviewer what he was to do, and he was firmly told, "Go through the gate."
On reaching the road, the slimly built interviewee commented on the disrespectful way that he and the other interviewees had been treated, the lead interviewer's menacing remark was, "You shoulda said that when you de pon the premises mek we deal with you."
The slimly built interviewee quickly read the situation and made a hasty retreat, much to the amusement of the interviewers and some of his fellow interviewees.
With the economy being what it is, it is reasonable to assume that this is not an isolated case in the security industry and other industries. Although it is an employer's market, the interviewees must be treated with respect, as any trained human-resource practitioner will advise.
PETER A.P. REID