Q: I am a newspaper reporter looking for my second job out of college. I have an interview in two weeks at a newspaper that I really want to go to and it would do wonders for my career.
Another newspaper just left me a message saying they are interested in interviewing me. The first paper has told me that I am the only person they are interviewing and that, if all goes well, they will make me an offer.
My question is: do I accept an interview offer from the second paper, knowing full well that I have a possibility I will jump at if it's offered to me? I would hate to have someone schedule an interview and make travel arrangements, only to cancel. However, I also don't want to put all my eggs in one basket and decline the second interview in case the first one doesn't work out. How do I handle this?
A: Ah, that’s ticklish. You anticipate the recruiting companies’ positions well. Express your genuine interest in the second paper, but tell them it’ll be a couple weeks until you can commit to a travel date. The issue will arise only if there is air travel involved. Hotels can be canceled with 24 hours notice or less and schedules can be canceled quickly.