Lots of People Want To Work For Diddy

Rapper, fashion designer, and music mogul P. Diddy is looking for a personal assistant and he turned to mediabistro for help. Diddy posted an ad on our job board seeking applicants with a “big personality” who can be “available and on-call 24/7.” His search for a right hand man (or woman) is going to be televised on VH1 for the second season of the reality show “I Want To Work For Diddy.”

On Saturday, FishbowlNY joined mediabistro’s education team and TV reporting instructor Manoush Zomorodi to get a sneak peak at the candidate pool for Diddy’s new assistant position and to offer hopeful job seekers some on-the-spot interviewing tips.

And it may have been a brisk weekend in New York, but things got a little heated inside…

Over 400 applicants showed up at the casting call with a few of them arriving as early as 4am. In a sign of these recessionary times, many of the job seekers had much more impressive credentials than you might expect from reality television hopefuls. Many of those who lined up halfway down the block for a shot at being Diddy’s assistant claimed to have graduate degrees and extensive past work experience. John Godfrey, a member of Washington University’s class of ’08 who is currently working as an executive assistant, told us that prior to confronting the bad job market “I don’t even think it crossed my mind that I would go on a reality show after college.”

Many of the job seekers went to great lengths to make it to the casting call. We spoke to a woman named Vanessa Jasey who said she had knee surgery just two weeks ago and came to the event on crutches. Another applicant, Michael Edwards of New Orleans told us he saved up $6,000 to travel to various “I Want To Work For Diddy” casting calls.

Only a handful of those who showed up at the event were invited to come to a second round of interviews this week. Since the casting process for the show is ongoing, we don’t want to reveal too much about what went down in the interviews, but we can say that things got surprisingly heated. One woman, who was angry after not making the cut, got into a screaming match with another applicant. Douglas Howlington of Iconic Casting, tried to make peace by interjecting, “I hope you find a way not to try to be so nasty when you get outside.” After things cooled down, we asked Howlington if shouting matches were a normal part of his job and he told us “it happens, they do get angry sometimes.”

mediabistro tried to offer some relief to the folks who didn’t make the cut for the show. Our events manager Tatiana Ridley was at a booth outside the interviews distributing informational materials and encouraging the applicants “to check out our jobs board and our classes if this gig doesn’t work out for them.”