My Journey to The Refinery

Steve Fox

In today’s market you have to make it your job to find a job. You have to be diligent and not get discouraged, because companies can say one thing and do the other. You have to be on your toes and be picky. As someone who’s gone on a ton of interviews, you get the sense that it’s more important to these companies to have bodies than people who actually want to work there. If you’re not careful you can end up in the wrong opportunity.

Are there some great places to work for with employers who care along with employees who want to build a company up in the right way… absolutely! Those companies take some digging to find them, but they are out there. Finding the right company to work for comes down to two main ideas in my opinion. One is being honest with yourself and the other is discipline. Given your timeline to find a job both ideas are not easy to follow. You have to be willing to say to yourself, do I want to work there and will I be a good fit? If not, then you have to have the discipline to continue to search and find the right opportunity.

I’ve been to many different interviews spanning several different industries, but my interview with the Refinery was a unique experience all in itself. When they requested the interview it was mentioned that we’d meet in a casual bar setting. Personally, I’ve never had an interview at a bar, so I didn't know what to expect. In this case it was the bar at the Union Club, which has a spirited atmosphere filled with business minded patrons. The meeting started off with a cheers of our drinks to set the right mood.

This is where I learned that the company was going in a whole new direction. That they wanted to help companies elevate and scope software projects before they begin, so they don't have over running budgets. They saw a disconnect in the industry and wanted to change the approach of how companies seek an implementation partner.

So, there I am sipping on my vodka tonic, listening, and putting the pieces together. It was weird in a good way, but I already felt part of the team. I believe this was from how the company’s vision was being explained to me. It didn’t feel like an interview. It felt more like someone who had an idea and was looking for like minded people who shared in the excitement. The interaction was more about the strategy behind the new idea and how to obtain success when presenting it to existing and potential clients. The vibe I got was I was already part of the team and would be one of the people tasked with this new project.

I thought to myself “so this company has been in business for 18 years and has never had a sales team? That’s crazy.” You’d think that a company that has any type of product to sell this would not be the case. This also played a role in the connection that was made. When a company has relied on referrals and word of mouth for their business generation they have a confidence that just makes things feel different.

All in all it was a welcoming experience, and the candid approach was refreshing. It was more than an interview but an experience worth talking about. At the end I knew I wanted the job, so when the offer came through… I jumped on the opportunity!



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This post was last updated on: Feb 02, 2023.