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I was recently hired for a seasonal part-time position where I jumped the gun after discussing my current studies by telling the interviewer (manager A) that I will be graduating in a few months and that I am obligated by my program to get a job within 6 months of my graduation. This means that I would be working for them a total of 6-12 months with no certainty of when I will leave in that period.

I did this because I am honest, which I suppose is a good quality, and because it was one of my first job interviews outside of my college PTJs, bound to make a mistake. But I was warned that if they hired me (which they did) that I might not stay after the season if they can't guarantee I will be staying long enough to justify hiring me for a non-seasonal position.

I am now up for an interview with manager B at this same company that I am working for seasonally in a position that is a promotion from the seasonal part-time work I'm doing at the moment (but still not much). It is no surprise that manager A told manager B about my potentially short-term stay.

I intend to be honest if the question of my stay comes up in the interview, since I can't take it back. The thing is, when I finish my studies I'll be going into a job with a starting salary near $100k but a 30k job is enough to pay the bills in the meantime.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

  • You've hinted at this, but can you answer directly? Is your current role in line with your projected role (post-graduation) in terms of typical career advancement? – dwizum Nov 28 '18 at 21:34
  • 2
    Possible duplicate of Interview question "How long will you stay with us?" – Dukeling Nov 28 '18 at 21:43
  • @dwizum We're talking a retail job in the same industry. Something maybe a college student would do for a PTJ. My career goal is a software type of job. – q-compute Nov 28 '18 at 22:02
  • @JoeStrazzere I mentioned the month that I graduate. Which is when I am required to start actively applying for jobs. Thus it would technically be possible that I could get a job soon after that. I personally doubt it would happen that fast, but it's not impossible. – q-compute Nov 28 '18 at 22:03
  • Welcome new user, your question is interesting but could you click Edit and drastically shorten it? – Fattie Nov 29 '18 at 12:41
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Stick with the honesty. Even if it costs you the job.

If you are the honest type (a rare gem in todays world) then you wouldn't be happy working there if you lied anyway.

  • This really is best. Since they know what they're up against now they might use the time to line you up with a decent competing offer. – candied_orange Nov 30 '18 at 1:37
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In your interview:
Talk about how you like this branch and you like this company.
Mention that they are in the same industry as your degree.

If Manager B asks you point blank if you will stay in this position
after your graduation, you have to should be honest about it.

Tell him/her that you like the job, but your degree pays about triple and since you aren't independently wealthy (smile while saying it) you'd have to move on to something else when you are able to. Mention that again you'd love to stay in this company, that you'll be here at least six months, and that you won't leave them high and dry when you do leave like the last person did.
Volunteer to help them look for a replacement who is a couple years from graduation when that time comes (it was a good fit for you, right?)

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Be honest about your constraints, as well as what value you bring to the organization. If you're open to staying if they offer you a long-term position, discuss what that looks like for both of you. For example, in the interview you could say something like, "this opportunity sounds like it would be mutually beneficial for both of us. I'll be graduating in six months, and in order for me to remain after that, I'd need to be in a position that isn't seasonal. To be clear, this is a [salaried position, year-long contract, etc.], right?"

  • That's probably decent advice generally, but I'm not interested in staying in the retail area of my industry. Especially considering the cap on pay for the highest salaried employee at my branch is what I'd make entry-level in my "real job" after graduating... and that position doesn't require a degree. – q-compute Nov 29 '18 at 14:00

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