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Intensive: Interview Skills Workshop - UPDATED
Transcript of Intensive: Interview Skills Workshop - UPDATED
The Night Before
At The Interview
After The Interview
Types of Questions
What part of the role are you most looking forward to?
What do you think makes for an excellent employee in this organisation?
What would you do if a client made a complaint about your work?
What do you see as the major challenges facing our organisation
Who are our key competitors?
Tell me a bit about yourself
What do you think are your key strengths and weaknesses?
What is your approach to [accountancy / teaching / arts administration / insert your field]?
Where would you like to be in five years time?
Why are you interested in this role?
Tell me about your interests outside university and work?
Tell me about a difficult individual that you’ve had to work with and how you managed to work with them effectively.
Tell me about a time when you have exceeded someone’s expectations.
Describe a situation when you needed to persuade others to follow your idea. How did you convince them to agree with you?
Can you please give us an example of a time when you prioritised competing tasks and projects?
Can you tell me about a time when you made a mistake? What happened and what did you do about it?
Tell us about a situation in which you had to adjust to changes over which you had no control. How did you handle it?
Describe a time when you had to analyse information and make a recommendation. What kind of thought process did you go through?
Who, when, where?
Give a context.
What was your goal?
What did you do?
How did you do it?
What was the outcome?
Quantify if possible.
Write a Thank You Email
Treat it as meticulously as your resume
Dear Ms. Smith
Thank you for taking the time to meet with me on Tuesday. After speaking with you and learning more about the structure of [company name]'s summer program, I am even more enthusiastic about the possibility of working there next summer. I particularly enjoyed hearing about your work in representing several not-for-profit organisations in trade-related matters.
If I can provide you with any additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me. I look forward to hearing from you.
(adapted from Berkeley Career Development Office, 2012)
Research the company.
Products and services
Size and location
Reputation, recent mentions in the news
Structure, culture and roles
Mission and values
Competitors and partnering companies
Funding, growth and viability
Know the industry
Understand the position.
Review the job ad / job description
The tasks and responsibilities
Expectations of you (work hours, etc)
Structure - e.g. rotational program
Learning and development
Career progression opportunities
Salary and benefits
Why is it vacant?
What are your goals, values, interests and skills?
Do they match this job?
Why do you want this job?
Review your resume & job application
What skills and experience do you have to offer?
Which of these makes you BETTER than the rest?
Would you hire yourself? Why?
Know how to pitch yourself to employers.
"Dress for the job that you want,
not the job you have."
Prepare questions to ask the Interviewer
If I were to be successful for this job, how do you suggest I prepare for my first week in the role?
What are your expectations of the successful applicant?
Does the organisation have a mentoring scheme?
What are the quality standards for this role?
How will my work be evaluated?
Is it possible to rotate through different divisions?
Does the organisation support other social or team activities for new graduates?
Do you have any questions or concerns about my qualifications or experience that I may answer for you?
Arrive 10 minutes early
Open with a smile and strong handshake
Posture can show confidence - or insecurity - sit up straight!
Be positive, enthusiastic and professional
Listen attentively and with appropriate eye contact
Provide specific examples wherever possible
Don't use negatives or apologise for your lack of experience/skills (always focus on your positive attributes)
Prove to the interviewer that you are the best candidate
Demonstrate what makes you stand out from the others
Manage your Nerves
The more prepared you are, the less nervous you will feel
Use adrenalin to your advantage
You've been invited to interview because they were impressed by your application.
Remember that interviewers aren't there to trick you
Listen carefully to each question
Monitor the tone/pitch of your voice and talking speed
Recognise and manage any physical symptoms - e.g. if your hands get sweaty, run cool water over them before you go in
Speak negatively of previous employers or work situations
Rush in with babbling answers to questions
Oversell or undersell yourself
Lie or exaggerate
Over-extend the interview
Fidget or chew gum
Use racist, culturally insensitive or sexist statements
Leave your phone turned on (& definitely don't answer if it rings!)
Raise salary expectations until asked
Smoke or douse yourself in perfume / cologne before your interview
Underestimate the power of practicing!
Write down the questions asked and the answers you gave - while you remember
Was there anything you would answer differently next time? What would you say?
Is there anything you couldn't answer? Look it up!
Review your preparation, behaviour and dress
Revisit your resume
Focus on the positives and keep improving
7% is what you say (content, language used)
38% is how you say it (tone of voice, volume, positive)
55% is how you act (body language, appearance)
Sample Thank You Email
Telephone screening / Phone Interview
Skype or Video Conference Interviews
Albert Mehrabian's Communications Model
Making a good
... is not just what you say
What to Pack
Location details and directions
Names of the interviewers & phone numbers
Resume and application
Portfolio (generally creative industries)
List of questions to ask the interviewer
Anything else requested by the interviewer:
Don't ask questions if you could easily find out the answer beforehand..
Tip: Don't wear brand new clothes for the first time. If you do try to wear in your clothes before the interview so that you feel comfortable in them.
Be nice to everyone! You never know who you'll meet on your way to the interview.
Employers sometimes ask the receptionist for a second opinion too.
Try to build rapport with your interviewer before the interview begins.
e.g. on the walk to the interview room....
Tell me about yourself
The Origins of the Interview
Remember the Top 10 most assessed competencies?
Types of Interviews
See page 46 in workbook
to follow along
Interview Preparation Checklist on pages 47-48 in workbook
Your turn: practice your answer with the person sitting beside you
Elevator Pitch tips guide included in your workbook to help you (pages 49 & 50).
(2015 AAGE Survey)
See pages 51 - 54 in workbook for lists of sample interview questions
Activity: page 55-56 in workbook
Think of examples you could use to demonstrate some of the common competencies assessed for at interview.
See pages 57 & 58 for example interview questions with STAR responses
Interviews feature heavily in the selection techniques used by employers.
Ummmm.... like, you know.. stuff.
"Umm....like" guide to help you break the habit: pages 62 - 66 in workbook
Use InterviewStream for free now before you lose access as an alumni!
Guide to help you prepare employer questions:
page 67 in workbook
First Impressions Count
The Art of Small Talk
Turn to pages 53-54 - Behavioural Questions - in the workbook.
In groups of 3, take turns in the following roles:
(As the observer, see if the answer to a behavioural question follows the STAR answer format and look for any non-verbal communication signals too!)
If there's time, practice some traditional questions too (pages 51 & 52)
Did you hear any of these
in the activity?
Video Interview Tips: pages 60 & 61
Interview "Cheat Sheet" on page 68 in workbook