(because My Readership - or at least one dear soul who actually gives a damn - demands it) went very, very well. I went in very relaxed, with the "I don't need this job, I'm just shopping around," attitude, and boy, that is the only way to go. I think it was the strongest interview I've ever had in my life. The job sounds great, interesting, the firm sounds great, small, not too small, strong client list, well-structured team atmosphere.
I was very proud of myself, I didn't actually drool all over the conference table when she said I'd have a "small" window office and a door. A door! And a mailroom and a copy guy and a file room with an actual, human file clerk! Yet, I did not leap across the table and scream, "I WANT IT NOWWWW!!!!" Though I do.
We got to salary, and here is where I am most proud of myself. I have always sucked at salary negotiations, but this time I did the "Don't Blink," and it worked. She started to talk about money, I asked, "What's the range?" We did the dance a bit, she said the range was from X to Y, and I told her I was making "Over Z." Which was true. They did come in lower than I am making now. She said, "Oh, that's more than I was thinking of," and then proceeded to hard-sell me on the quality of life at the firm, how great the work environment was, etc. and tell me how she had researched local salaries, etc. I said it sounded wonderful, but I'm a widow with a mortgage and I can't take a pay cut, and I'd done firsthand research with paralegals I know at state-level firms and they are making more than I am. Which is also true. I've only begun to look, I like this firm and I would like this job, but I'm not about to sell myself short, I ain't desperate. We talked for a long time after the salary moment, she said I'm definitely getting a callback to meet with the attorneys, I'm a "very strong candidate" and my resume has been circulating around the firm. So I'm thinking the shareholders Want Me, and I think the office manager wants me, and they will just have to pony up the dough or keep looking, because as attractive as a window office and A DOOR (insert sound of angelic chorus singing hosannas) I am not going to take a pay cut to get it. I know I can get it elsewhere.
One email, one interview. The search has just begun. I feel good.
It was a good day. After months of petty shit and idiocy at my current employer, it was so nice to talk to someone who actually understood my skills and appreciated them. I haven't laughed that much in an interview, ever. It was a good experience, even if it just empowers me for the next one.