JAC smiled and quickly interjected, “I can learn quickly. One of the best ways to do that is to almost become someone’s shadow for a few days. Would that be agreeable?” Laurie said, “I think that will work, except for the areas where I have security clearance. It will take a few months before you will gain that status.”
JAC beamed and flashed her friendly smile of encouragement. “I totally understand and will work toward that. What’s the next step in this process? I would like to start as quickly as possible.”
Laurie answered, “We do have some formalities including reference checks and criminal background reviews. But that is not kicked off until an offer is made. You know, privacy and all. Plus, I want to have you meet my boss.” Then scooting forward as if they were nearing status of best buddies, she quietly added, “Honestly, if he has no objections, I would like to make you an offer today. Wait here and let me go speak with him.”
After Laurie left, JAC schooled her face into a very pleasant expression with only a hint of a smile. Slowly she looked around the room like someone interested in the pictures on the walls, plants which appeared to be silk, and finally spotted the camera. The recording mike had to be close, but it was not easily spotted. When she’d entered the building, the security was evident, but at the elevator it was more subtle. This, she decided, was the floor where visitors and customers came to talk and be observed.
It was extremely likely that she was being observed even now. Her hands rested comfortably in her lap with no fidgeting. She wouldn’t grab her purse for a phone or makeup, like many people alone tended to do. The need to fill in time with random activities was a bad habit for many people, and one she did not intend to convey. As she continued the mental countdown to the ten minute mark, she detected movement on the door handle.
Laurie entered with a smile. “Mr. Patrick says he has a few minutes to speak with you. You may leave your things here, and I will bring you back when you are done. I set you up in the best light, Jackeline, so just keep up what you are doing and don’t be nervous. He is gruff, but he is fair.”
They walked a short way back down the hallway toward the elevators and stopped at a door. Laurie knocked. “Come in.” the male voice announced.
Laurie ushered them inside a very expansive office. Definitely one a boss would have. Big desk, executive leather chair, papers stacked haphazardly, a large computer screen, several monitors against the wall providing views into other markets, JAC guessed. The man stood and walked around the desk to shake her hand.
JAC fought the urge to say, ‘Wow, Petra said you looked like a pear and she was right.’ She flashed her very best smile as she extended her hand and said, “Very nice to meet you, Mr. Patrick. Laurie said you ran a very tight ship at this highly regarded company.”
Mike gave this female an assessing look. Professional attire, hair in place, limited makeup, no sex play, and an engaging smile. He thought she might work well with some of their visiting clients.
“Nice to meet you, Miss Cooper. Have a seat.” He indicated a chair by a small table away from his desk and closer to the windows. He turned to Laurie and said, “Thank you, Laurie. That will be all for now. While I speak with Miss Cooper, I need to have you make certain Dabir is comfortable with the mailing process. I will ring you when we finish.”
Laurie smiled as she exited to Mike’s words. “Please, Miss Cooper, what do you know about ePETRO and how can you contribute?”
An hour after the interview with Mr. Patrick had completed, JAC had been made an offer which she of course accepted. She signed some papers which allowed the background check to officially begin. In getting the information from her portfolio and purse, she noticed they had been searched, presumably while she had spoken to Mr. Patrick. This made her wonder if it was their normal hiring practice or just for the role she was filling. She knew in their vetting process they had already completed some of the background checks, and she would pass this test too.
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