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Lost a job because of my bike....

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Lost a job because of my bike....

Old 08-09-06, 09:49 AM
  #26  
NeezyDeezy
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you would NOT have enjoyed working for such people, count it as a blessing
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Old 08-09-06, 09:50 AM
  #27  
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Yeah I wouldn't bring up the bike until I was already there, and even then I'd just ride it and not say anything. Once they've hired you, they'll be a little chickin***t to confront you right away, and give you enough time to show that you'll be dependable (assuming you would be). The situation I would bring up the bike for is if they mention something like: we have a race team or our company get's xxx dollars from the county for each non car commuter.

Regarding discrimination: I don't think this counts, my understanding is that companies are allowed to run credit checks on potential employees (with your permission). Essentially Race, Relegion, sex, and age (and in some states sexual orientation) are the only things they have to be careful with.
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Old 08-09-06, 10:04 AM
  #28  
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WTF!?!?!

I thought all companies had 'environmental initiatives' and 'wellness committee's by now.
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Old 08-09-06, 10:11 AM
  #29  
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I don't think the problem is the bicycle, the problem was that you asked for shower facilities. These are not normally available in a business environment.
I'd have kept quiet about the bicycle and ridden it in anyway. But that's just my opinion. In future, I'd not talk about showers.
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Old 08-09-06, 10:13 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by lyledriver
WTF!?!?!

I thought all companies had 'environmental initiatives' and 'wellness committee's by now.
Including oil companies and tobacco companies???

A co-worker of mine had to go to a meeting in West Virginia some time back... said he was shocked at the policies of smoking in the conference rooms... this was a couple years ago... so things may have changed. But bottom line is not all states nor all companies are environmentally or wellness aware...
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Old 08-09-06, 12:09 PM
  #31  
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That's weird. I can't imagine how they arrive at this opinion.
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Old 08-09-06, 12:17 PM
  #32  
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Like it or not, bicycle commuting by adults with more than enough means to drive is not considered normal in our society. Like others have pointed out, some things are better left unsaid in an interview. Live and learn.

We all hope you find a job you'll be much happier with Bearminder.
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Old 08-09-06, 12:18 PM
  #33  
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Personally, I never share more than what I am asked about in an interview and carefully filter my responses.

Once I was asked what type of music I like. My response: "everything". Truthfully: "indie, industrial, and metal. Metal does not carry a very positive connotation with some persons.

God I hate interviewing. Nothing like the experience of attempting to prove yourself to another person in an hr or less.
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Old 08-09-06, 12:45 PM
  #34  
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Legally, they cannot discriminate against someone who chooses to bike to work unless having a "reliable vehicle" is a bonified occupational job requirement. The trouble is that the OP exercised poor judgment by bringing it up in the first place. He should have keep quiet until he had the job.

Originally Posted by gwhalin
That line of questioning even strikes me as being illegal. "I thought you were making $$$". Hiring you based on your financial status is pretty much a no no. Unless a car is required for you to actually do your job, your mode of commuting is likely not really any concern of theirs.
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Old 08-09-06, 01:07 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by DataJunkie
Personally, I never share more than what I am asked about in an interview and carefully filter my responses.

Once I was asked what type of music I like. My response: "everything". Truthfully: "indie, industrial, and metal. Metal does not carry a very positive connotation with some persons.

God I hate interviewing. Nothing like the experience of attempting to prove yourself to another person in an hr or less.
+1 sorry you didn't get the job... but, yeah, don't tell them anything they didn't ask. It's your business how you get to work, unless they require that you have a car to do stuff for the company. that does suck though.
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Old 08-09-06, 01:12 PM
  #36  
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That is not really a legal reason to deny you the position if you are qualified. Actually they have opened themselves up for a potential law suit if you wish to take it that far. Tardiness only becomes an issue if it happens after you start working someplace. A lot of my people take publice transportation to work and they are generally late 2 days a week on the average.
 
Old 08-09-06, 01:24 PM
  #37  
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In my final round interview, I made it very clear that I needed to be accomodated for commuting on bike. I even negotiated for a storage closet for my bike. I should add I work at a nonprofit, which is likely to be more progressive.
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Old 08-09-06, 01:28 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by DataJunkie
Personally, I never share more than what I am asked about in an interview and carefully filter my responses.

Once I was asked what type of music I like. My response: "everything". Truthfully: "indie, industrial, and metal. Metal does not carry a very positive connotation with some persons.

God I hate interviewing. Nothing like the experience of attempting to prove yourself to another person in an hr or less.
It may be a "tactical" error to reveal too much about yourself at an interview, but on the other hand I can see why the OP let his guard down a bit: up to that point the interview was going great and everyone was very accomodating and friendly to him.

I wonder what kind of HR person thinks like that: "Let's see, he seems smart, he has a good resume, he's nice in person... whoa! He rides a bike, must be a deadbeat!!!"
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Old 08-09-06, 01:49 PM
  #39  
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I wouldn't beat myself up if I was the OP.
<-- made the same mistake several times. Not with cycling but other items.
Personally, I would prefer to discover who moronic a company is before I started working there. It is very obnoxious to job hunt, get hired, and then need to start all over finding a new job. At least they showed their true colors before the hiring. However, It still makes no sense.
God, I dislike it when persons automatically assume there is something wrong with a person who commutes on a bike.
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Old 08-09-06, 02:03 PM
  #40  
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The whole thing is just ridiculous. Saying that prior employees who commuted by bike were late is like saying that prior employees who drank too much coffee were hyper and couldn't focus. As an adult, you should make the choice of what you can do, and what you can handle. I agree with the others who say that the company was not for you. Still, it really is too bad.

By the way, for some reason I always get to work earlier when I ride my bike than when I drive. And I guess I'm lucky, because my bosses thought it was cool that I commuted by bike. We have an indoor bike rack, not accessible to the public.

Hope you find a bike friendly employer soon!
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Old 08-09-06, 02:20 PM
  #41  
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I am shocked that anyone in an HR position would admit such a bias in the hiring process.

This is one of the millions of reasons I'm not looking forward to looking for a new job, which I will have to do soon.
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Old 08-09-06, 03:44 PM
  #42  
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I'm interviewing for jobs right now (just graduated college three weeks ago) and I've made an executive decision to NOT say ANYTHING about bike commuting until well after I'm hired. I'll prove myself as a worker bee to the company and show what I can contribute first. the most important thing is to get a job you can bike commute TO first, THEN think about bike commuting.

the last interview I had, I was asked if I drive, and if I have transportation. I was 100% honest... "yes, I drive" (I do, but I would have had no intention of driving there) ... "yes, I have transportation" (a bike is transportation). whether I drive or not had no bearing on the position... it was a clerical position and it was only 7 miles away (most of which would have been a bike path), but I think he was just asking that cause the office wasn't near a bus or metro stop and he wanted to make sure I wasn't relying on public transport. either way I played it cool and was basically honest.
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Old 08-09-06, 03:56 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by DataJunkie
Personally, I never share more than what I am asked about in an interview and carefully filter my responses.

Once I was asked what type of music I like. My response: "everything". Truthfully: "indie, industrial, and metal. Metal does not carry a very positive connotation with some persons.

God I hate interviewing. Nothing like the experience of attempting to prove yourself to another person in an hr or less.

I just tell them "Rock" instead of "Metal", afterall, metal is an offset of rock, so it's not like I was being deceptive or anything. Industrial would fall under electronic. Etc.

The only thing I might elaborate on is my computer building hobby, but only to jobs where prototyping is going to be performed (my favorite past job had TONS of prototyping, I was in nerd-heaven!). My builds tend to go well into the "WTF?" zone.
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Old 08-09-06, 04:01 PM
  #44  
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While I agree this stance is a bad practice on the part of the employeer, I do not think that bicycle commuters are a protected class when it comes to hiring.
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Old 08-09-06, 04:03 PM
  #45  
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It is discrimination. Every hiring decision is by definition discrimination among the applicants. But is it illegal?

I seriously doubt it.
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Old 08-09-06, 06:32 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by Bearminder
Long time lurker...thought I'd share this story.

Had an interview for a job last week. Went very well. The HR manager interviewed me first. Everything went great- so good in fact she asked me to stay and speak with the department head I'd be working for. Knowing this company, I knew this was a good sign- usually applicant do three interviews across several weeks, with the dept. head been the last one - just a formality type thing.

The department head was friendly and asked me when I could start. We discussed salarly (big raise from my current job), benifits, and all the perks of the company. Then came the fun part....

Since this job is only 5 miles from my house, I was thinking of riding my bike. I mwntioned this to him, and asked what type of facilties (racks, showers, etc) the company had. He got a strange look on his face and asked, "You don't have a car? I thought you were making $xx,xxx at your current job?" I explained I did have a car, but just thought since this was so close the excercise, benifits of riding, and so on would make more sense and enjoyable. The conversation changed tones quickly. Basically, all his questions became that since I wanted to ride to work I was some kind of pauper-hippy-unreliable lowlife. It ended with an "We'll get back to you."

Today, the HR lady called and said they had filled the position. After a lengthy phone conversation she did explain say that the choice was made based on my desire to commute by bike to work. In the past, so she says, they have had several employee who biked, who always had some excuse for being out ,late, tired, and so on. Past experience had taught them that bike commuters were not reliable.

While the job, money and perks would have been nice- I glad to find out now what kind of company they are and how much the just employees by surface trappings.
I'm actually quite stunned that this would happen -- not only that they made a hiring decision based on the fact that you rode a bike, but that they would be so stupid as to actually tell you that was the reason you weren't hired. In most jurisdictions in Canada this would likely be a violation of Provincial Human Rights Codes.

Do you need to keep on good terms with the company? Because my temptation would be to go to your local newspaper and give them your story.
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Old 08-09-06, 08:18 PM
  #47  
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Several people have pointed out an important feature of job interviews.
It's best not to volunteer information that is not requested. YOUR requests should be postponed until after you actually have the job.
Personal hygiene is important on most jobs and you should bring Handi-Wipes or your own towel and washcloth and tidy up in a restroom after you arrive (whether on a bike or in a car is no matter.) Do not assume that they have a shower.
I once worked at a studio where the temperatures were over one hundred degrees (there was no air conditioning.) They DID have a studio but it was the exclusive property of the Big Producer, even if he was not there (and he usually wasn't.) Fair? No, but that's the way they did things. People used the washrooms and got by as best they could.
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Old 08-09-06, 08:19 PM
  #48  
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sorry, that should be they had a SHOWER in the studio. No one but the Big Producer could use it. He also had a private popcorn machine.
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Old 08-09-06, 08:28 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by gizmocat
sorry, that should be they had a SHOWER in the studio. No one but the Big Producer could use it.
Gotta do that coke somewhere.
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Old 08-09-06, 08:30 PM
  #50  
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Unless cycling is part of your religion, (good opportunity to start a cult around here), you cannot claim discrimination. Same as if you drove a 30 year old car because you thought it had a cool colour. IANAL.
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