As you noticed for sure, I was working as a Train Attendant on high speed international trains but in reality I always wanted to… F-L-Y ! And this year, since I turned 25 in February, it was really time to move and to realize that dream. And I did it!
Early January, I took the decision to write my CV in English and also to write a cover letter to send to the different airline companies which where recruiting at that time for this summer season. I also sent my application to a new company which will base 3 aircrafts in Brussels to operate flights on behalve of another company and was looking for bi-lingual and tri-lingual staff to start the operations.
The 1st try
On the 1st of February 2017, I went to my first selection day, fully ready and a bit nervous (I must say). I prepared myself with some classical questions they ask on a recruitment day and also some typical questions regarding the job. The first test was a written English test, followed by a group exercise to end up with an individual interview. I went through all these steps successfully but the only bad point was my ongoing job since I couldn’t leave within 10 days to start the training in time to get ready to fly at the end of March. You can’t imagine how I felt: lost, disappointed, I can’t really describe how I was at that time but for sure I was sad, sad that I could not realize my dream.
Until the day I received a call
A morning, I wasn’t really expecting it anymore as we were already almost 1 month after they closed the position, I received a call from a company and they started to ask questions in the 3 national languages to hear at the end: “Are you available on the 1st of March for a recruitment session?”
As it didn’t work really well for my job application with the previous company, I really wanted to and I managed to be able to leave my job in time for a training within a reasonable time. And so I went to the recruitment day with a light heart but even more nervous than for the 1st time, as it was for the company I really wanted to work for.
Stress… Stress… Stress…
Most of the time, when passing a recruitment day for an airline company, you’ll get a group exercise, they need to see and know how you can work with a team. In my case, I presented myself in 3 languages and I took a card with a mystery question in it to which I had to answer on the spot. Afterwards they give you a situation on which you need to discuss in a group and find a solution which is suitable for the entire team and they just observe you and write down comments about you and the group.
Then you get a written test in English, most of the time to see if you have the level to follow a course in English language, as in aviation, all safety duties and training must be performed in the aviation language: English. There were also a few questions on the company and some basic mathematics.
After a debriefing between recruiters and the results you had in each “interview” during the morning, they made a selection to go to the next and last step: the individual interview. We were about 40 in a room and they just mentioned names before asking to go out of the meeting room, and at that moment you’re thinking about everything except that you can be selected for the next step… We started to briefly chat between us and everyone was thinking : “OK, we’re done, it’s not for us”. And no, we were the selected ones.
No feelings or expressions
Of course the recruiters don’t let you feel if you do it good or not. So as a human you immediately think : “I’m doing something wrong”. The only thing you can see is the time between each candidate, sometimes it’s short and sometimes really long. When you’re in front of them you don’t see the time, the time is clearly flying… And the more it goes the more you feel you did it wrong and that you’ll have to leave. Just the time for me to join the people I met there on that day and the recruiter was behind me to pick up a new candidate and at that moment I stopped to believe that they would choose me.
A new stressful period…
With this feeling, that I created for myself at the end, it started to boil in me. And even though you know that you’ll get the result the week after, you start checking your mailbox right from the day after to know more and to know what they decided. And as promised, one week later I received an e-mail which told me that I was selected and on the stand-by list. They would call me as soon as they needed new cabin crew. I was so happy at that time, you can’t imagine even if you don’t know when they will need you: maybe the next month, maybe next year… But the first step is done, you’re selected!
You can also from time to time receive a direct proposition with a date of training, but less and less airline companies are doing it. They most of the time now select a number of candidates on a waiting list and call them when needed.
Dream comes true in Disneyland
The week after the recruitment, I went to Disneyland to rest and enjoy a bit my free time and get some magic. Until my phone started to vibrate in my pocket and I saw a number that I didn’t know. I took the call and it was the airline which offered me a training and a position as cabin crew right from the following month. Of course you can imagine that I had a fixed smile on my face all the rest of the trip but it had been shorter than planned, I had to go back to Brussels to go and fill out some documents to request the mandatory badge and documents. But I was so happy that it didn’t matter, I can go again and again to Disneyland.
And so the 14th of April, I started my training to become flight attendant or cabin crew and since that time I’m tired. Tired because it’s an intensive training and you learn plenty of new things that can be useful in the everyday life as well as in the professional life.
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