As the metro rightly reported yesterday, it is 10 years since the best and worst job interview ever took place. If you’ve ever left a job interview thinking that went terribly, cheer yourself up by watching the video of Guy Goma being interviewed live on BBC news. Guy had arrived at the BBC studios ready for an IT job interview when he was mistaken for a guest technology expert. It’s one of those clips that I can’t watch in public, it gets me every time.
Guy didn’t get the job unfortunately, but how could he have prepared to be dragged into a live interview on the national news?
One of the purposes of a consultant is that we build relationships with clients and gain a full understanding of what they are looking for – including how they will test for those qualities at interview. No surprises. Invariably we will have spoken with the hiring manager or HR team prior to your arrival. It is also likely we will have had candidates interview at the firm previously. Information sharing makes us all better prepared.
Of course, we can only provide guidance, your own preparation is the most important thing you can do. Having been sat on both sides of the interviewing desk, it is painstakingly obvious when someone hasn’t carried out sufficient preparation.
CV based interviews should in theory be the easiest as you’re only referring to your own experiences, but you must know that CV inside out. Any facts/figures you have mentioned must be cited exactly again in interview or you threaten your own credibility. Competency based questions can be a little more daunting – so practice. Have a friend or family member interview you if you haven’t been to one in a while. Answer questions using the STAR technique and if you have answers prepared to the obvious competency questions, the rest will flow.
Lastly on the candidate side, remember it is a two way process at interview. If you are genuinely interested in a role you will have carried out research into the firm. This will allow you to talk honestly about what attracts you to that firm, but this should also bring out some good quality questions to ask. These must be positive and should lead to a conversation building with the interviewer(s).
Equally, with clients we are here to offer an insight into the candidates and what pushes their buttons – there is nothing underhand about this, it is all part of offering a consultative service. One part of this is helping you find the best way to inform the candidate why you are better than their current employer. Very few of our candidates are out of work, so it can be a daunting process leaving the security of their current job. We work closely with our clients to ensure we are over-coming this.