I have been working at Structured Communications full-time
A very tight-knit family like environment with a lot of support. Ron Fowler, the CEO/President/Owner, is a great guy and treats his employees well. IT is an ever changing industry and the variety of challenges make the job never get boring. The benefits, while not the best, are overall good and the compensation is fair and includes profit-sharing and performance bonuses. A great place to grow and take risks as the company continues to grow. Low turnover. Fun events and team builders are hosted every few months. Some of the engineers are the best in the industry. The line card has been trimmed down and I truly feel we now have a good handful of "go-tos" for our best of breed offerings.
In my 5+ years, the Management Team has changed considerably. Many of the top level VPs and Directors were let go over the past three years, which sent some vibes of uncertainty through the company. However, this has been blunted in that the new Management Team is more united and creates a more supportive workplace environment, so what looked initially like a negative has been a positive. The Sales Team typically gets more praise and focus than the Engineer Team, while the dirty little secret is that the engineers are the cogs that keep this machine running.
Advice to Management
The company is in an interesting position. It's transforming from a family company to a bigger organization. In the process, it needs to decide where to make significant investments to take the next step while keeping the great culture around. Most people love working here and I do as well.
I applied online. The process took 2 weeks. I interviewed at Structured Communications (Clackamas, OR) in June 2016.
Due to schedules, they had me come in to meet with everyone in one day. I first met with 2 ladies. That portion of the interview took about an hour. One of the ladies warned me about the interview with a gentleman who I will call “Guy 1”- she said that he would rip me apart because I had some nervous ticks, such as moving my hair out of my face and saying "UM". She warned me that Guy 1 will count the number of ums I make. They joked multiple times about Guy 1 making people cry and how hard he is during interviews. I hoped they were joking, since they kept laughing.
Then I met with Guy 1 for a VERY long, uncomfortable hour. When Guy 2 walked in an hour later, he and Guy 1 interviewed me for an additional hour with Guy 1 doing most of the talking. I wanted to get up several times and leave, but kept thinking that Guy 1 would leave, and I would have a professional interview with Guy 2 at any moment. Guy 2 hardly spoke a word for the 3rd hour I was there, Guy 2 continued to grill me. I say "grill" because it was not an interview, it was an interrogation. The Questions that Guy 1 asked me were largely unprofessional and abusive. The very first question he asked me was, "Are you insecure?". That was out of the gate and it only got worse from there. He kept digging at me with ridiculous questions (that he seemed to think were manipulative and smart) to get me to tell him how insecure I am- and he was certain I was insecure. He also made it clear he is VERY secure. He is from L.A. and he was raised to be secure, he told me. I SHOULD have gotten up and walked out when he began his interview, and I regret enduring 2 hours in the room with him. My only excuse for sticking out the interview was that I had real interest in the position, and I thought at any moment his portion of the interview would end, and I would get to speak with someone else. Guy 2 only interjected a few times, and more than once Guy 1 turned to him and said, "Are you trying to make her feel better?". Guy 2 was, in fact, trying to break the tension and give me a reprieve. I am just very disappointed he allowed it to continue the way it did. Toward the end of the interview i was in tears. I am a grown, professional woman, and Guy 1 drove me to tears, asking me questions such as "Why do you overeat?" "When is that last time you yelled at someone at the grocery store?" to which I replied, "I don't yell at people at the grocery store", to which he turns to Guy 2 and says, "She doesn't yell at people or get mad, she's like one of those people that goes crazy, grabs a gun and storms in and shoots everyone at the office". I can share more bits of the interview, but they all seem unbelievable, but it would take too long to retell in this forum.
Guy 1 did count the number of times I said "Um", which was not often thanks to the ladies warning me earlier. He then went on to say "Um" himself during the interview, then quickly sniped at me that "that's why I don't like people saying um- now you have ME doing it!". He also counted the number of times I "corrected" him. He would make a statement he felt to be true about me as a person. All of those statements he made were false, assumptive, rude, and offensive. I did speak up and correct him a few times, as he was making a statement to ME about ME. He, more than once, turned to Guy 2 and said, "Oh, that's 3 times she's corrected me now". This interview was INSANE. At the end of the interview I stood up and had the decency to reach out and shake Guy 1's hand- he looked me and stated, "I don't shake hands". The man did not deserve a hand shake, but he does deserve to be fired for harassment.
I am a military veteran, I am a seasoned adult professional - this is, by far, the worst experience I've ever had interviewing for a job. The worst part to me is that the others I interviewed with that day spoke highly of Guy 1. They know what he is like and have seen him in interviews, and they all sing his praises. That is why, should I be offered the position (which after this review, I doubt that will happen), I would not work at Structured. The man repeatedly told me that he doesn't care what people think of him - that he doesn't care if the people he works with hate him- or if he upsets them, then so what? Whatever manipulation he does (and he called himself a GREAT manipulator) is working on employees at Structured. Shame on you. Stop letting him interview people. You are turning candidates off that would have been a great benefit to your team. Shame on the HR department for knowingly allowing him to be abusive to candidates.
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