It can hardly be a coincidence that no language on Earth has ever produced the expression “As pleasant as a job interview”
Think of the last conversation you can remember really enjoying. Maybe it was this morning over breakfast or it could have been weeks ago in a bar after work.
Who were you with and what were you talking about? Were you talking to someone whose opinions you respected and discussing something you cared about?
You might have hundreds of interactions with other people every day but have only one or two memorable conversations. The difference between them – Engagement.
It works the exact same way in job interviews.
Picture a hiring manager with a morning of interviews ahead of them. Let’s call him Nigel. You may expect Nigel to be looking forward to meeting all these bright, enthusiastic candidates (he’s a great manager after all) but chances are he isn’t. And why would he be? Four hours of asking the same questions and getting largely the same answers would be enough to drive anyone up the wall. How is he going to choose between a group of equally qualified people who all have the expertise needed for this position?
The person who will get the offer is going to be the one who stands out from the crowd. The person who makes Nigel remember them positively. They won’t do this just by having good answers prepared but through engaging him in the interview and raising his interest. They will turn the interview from an interrogation into a conversation by asking good questions throughout and by finding out themselves exactly what Nigel is looking for and what he is offering.
“They will spin the table”
Nigel has a problem he needs solving or he wouldn’t be looking for a new employee. Maybe he has an exciting new project coming up or maybe he needs someone to sit in front of the door to stop the draught. Either way, you won’t find out unless you spin the table and really get to the bottom of Nigel’s needs. If he has a problem that you have experience in solving then you can discuss it and all of a sudden the interview is going in a much better direction. If he has a draught-excluder issue in which you have no interest then that’s ok too, at least now you know and you need not waste any more time with the process.
There is no rule that says you have to wait until the end of the interview to ask questions (and if they tell you to do so it is a fairly good indicator of how they will treat you if you take the job!). Nigel doesn’t just want to run down the checklist in front of him then usher you out the door. He wants to know that you care about the position and that you’re interested in the company. You need to understand his problem and help him solve it.
So spin the table and get your interviewer talking. You’ll engage them in the meeting, learn more about the company and hugely increase your chances of walking away with the job.
If you would like more information on interview tips or are looking for a new position please call us on 01-4744600 or send your CV to firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted by Recruitment Consultant, Sigmar on 30 November 2017
Why You Should Research The Company Who Want To Interview You
Why You Should Research The Company Who Want To Interview You
Before entering into an interview situation, we HIGHLY advise that you research your prospective employer as thoroughly as possible. Not only will this increase the chances of your interview being successful, it can also help you decide if the business is a good cultural fit for you, and also offer peace of mind that the company has good intentions. Provide Company Authenticity Allow me to briefly divulge to you a personal experience I’ve had. During my years of studying I was signing up to agencies in the hope of getting some money to help with living expenses. I was contacted by an agency that said a company was looking for assistants to help out in their studio. I went along to the interview and after the usual questions and formalities, I was offered the job on the spot! Amazing right? Well, shortly after I verbally accepted the position, I was informed that before they would send a contract over, I was required to send £500 to the company accounts team to cover any potential ‘damages and expenses’ to equipment inside the studio. Naturally, this was some cause for concern, and long story short, after a quick flick through their online social presence, I found that most of their followers were paid for/bots and the company address listed on their website was actually a room above a laundrette 50 miles from where it should be! It is the unfortunate truth that there are some undesirables who will pray on the good intentions of jobseekers by offering opportunities in industries that are traditionally challenging to enter. Prior research into a company that has contacted you will provide peace of mind that the company exercises lawful practices and that their business is authentic and genuine. In the case of my own experience, it's certainly a rare occurrence, but unfortunately, not an impossibility. Is The Company Right For You? The average person will work for around 37.5 hrs pw, some more and some less. This is a long time to be spent at the workplace, so in order to avoid any negative feelings or resentment towards work developing, you must make sure that the company’s culture aligns with your own. Ask yourself the following questions, am I able to complete the level of work required, can I work within company deadlines, am I able to handle the demands of my role, can I adhere to the company's work location i.e. work remotely, in office or hybrid? All these things will help you determine whether you can meet the demands of the role and perform consistently. Demonstrates an Interest in the Company As an employee of a company, you will be expected to act in a way that reflects the company’s best interests and core values. Employers will be looking for candidates in interviews that they feel best resonate with their core company ethics and philosophy. Demonstrating knowledge of the company’s history and expansion and recognising its achievements and accolades is sure to impress your potential employers. It conveys your own passion for the brand and desire to be a part of a company’s growth. This will help show your employer that you are committed to the future of the company and intend to work within the business for a long time. It helps you prepare meaningful questions Now you may have seen a post on our knowledge centre about questions you should ask your interviewer. These are all tried and tested ways to go the extra mile in an interview by seeking additional insight about your employer and demonstrating an interest in the company ethos. However, if you truly want to go above and beyond to impress your interviewer, mould your questions in such fashion that they directly relate to the business. Example: I recognise the company’s overall mission is X. But can you share some of the company's short and long-term goals during the next 3 years. What part would I play in helping the business to achieve these targets? Formulating your questions about matters directly concerning the company shows your employers you are eager to become an asset to the business. This will also provide an opportunity to match the business goals with your own! It can help you learn more about the industry If you’ve decided that you need a change in your career path and want to pursue a role in a different industry, research into a company can help provide insight into what the work actually entails and how the industry and company itself operates. Learning the ins and outs, the rough and the smooth of the job you’re looking to apply for will help you make the right decision for both your career and wellbeing. If a company advertises a fast-paced quick response attitude, will you be able to keep up? Similarly, if the role operates within both high-pressure and relaxed periods of work, are you ok with an irregular balance of fast and slow-paced environments? Researching the company and role you wish to pursue will help answer some of these questions that should always be considered when trying something new. In Conclusion As you can see, there are many benefits to researching your employer. Prospective employers are always going to be looking for candidates that will go the extra mile, so this is good practice into the mindset of always going one step further to impress and prove why you are an important asset to any team.
Best Questions To Ask At The End Of Your Interview
Best Questions To Ask At The End Of Your Interview
"So, do you have any further questions you’d like to ask us?" Yes. Yes, you do! This part of the interview is a very clever way employers can gauge your interest in their company, and briefly switches the ‘Question and Answer’ roles associated with the interviewer and candidate. Of course, when presented with this question, your initial answer would be no. I mean, you’ve just spoken about the role and the job for the last 45 minutes, no doubt outlining your various experiences, skillset, responsibilities, salary expectations and company history. So, all bases should have been covered right? INCORRECT! Employers aren’t looking to hire somebody that simply performs the bare minimum of work and walks away with the pay, they want to see your passion for their business, your recognition of its achievements, and your desire to help the company grow. Here are some questions to ask at the end of the interview that will provide further insight into the culture of the company, whilst conveying further interest in the role to your employer. What Are The Plans For The Business In The Next 3 Years? This is a great question that shows not only your commitment to the company but also the development of the business. In an ever-changing, ever-evolving market, asking this question to your employer shows that you demonstrate a knowledge and an awareness that a business’ longevity rests on its ability to move with the times, never settle in one place and constantly expand and grow within the field. This can also provide a heads up on any major upcoming projects and will give you a general idea about job security. Can You Describe The Working Culture Of The Organisation? Asking this question is a good way to assess the working environment of the company and whether you’ll fit in. You will learn how the company prioritises employee happiness and wellbeing, the work-life balance, and any benefits rewarded to employees on behalf of the company. If I Were To Be Successful, What Advice Or Resources Would You Recommend That Would Help Me Prepare For This Role Further Be careful how you word this question, as you don’t want to come across as arrogant and that the interview is a foregone conclusion. However, this is a great question to ask for both yourself and your interviewer, as it will show them that you are keen to perform in the role to the best of your ability. It also provides you with resources to help you prepare for employment so the first few weeks of work are less daunting, and you can start your new job feeling prepared. Will There Be Opportunity To Progress Further Down The Line? This question shows your employer that you have ambition, and you are conscious of your further career goals. Knowledge about opportunities to progress within the company will provide scope and allow you to look forward to the future. You don’t want to realise too late that there is little to no scope of progression into new roles and responsibilities, or that the only way to ascend the company ladder is to wait for somebody higher up to leave. Can You Describe A Typical Day or Week In The Job? Asking this question will provide an opening to address any queries or concerns you have found while reading the job description. Maybe a certain task wasn’t presented clearly, or you want to find more specifics when the job description alludes to a ‘variety of responsibilities.’ You’re going to want to know exactly what will be expected of you on a day-to-day basis, so you are prepared for what each week of work entails. Some interviewers will respond to this question by saying ‘Every day is different.’ In this instance, your best bet is to politely push for an answer by providing a period of time to draw experience from. Can you tell me more about what the last month looked like for the person in the job currently? What took up most of their time? In Conclusion It is impossible to cram every single piece of information into a job interview, so there will always be a question you can ask your employer at the interview's conclusion. We will follow up this blog post with some more questions soon, however, those aforementioned are a great way to learn more about the company you’ll be working for, what is expected of you, and the plans to grow the business, whilst also conveying your own excitement to be a part of that journey!
So You’re The ‘New Guy’ In The Office? Here’s Some Tips For Your First Week
So You’re The ‘New Guy’ In The Office? Here’s Some Tips For Your First Week
The first few weeks of work can be very intimidating. You have been placed in an unfamiliar environment full of people you don’t know who all seem to get along like a house on fire. You’re being presented with many new ideas, practices, and methods of work, complemented with a self-inflicted sense of pressure to not disappoint the people who have placed their faith in you. Your natural inclination may be to simply lay low and not draw too much attention to yourself. However, this may make things even worse! Below are a few points worth noting as you begin the next stage of your career and will hopefully make the first few weeks of your new job less stressful. Remember, we’ve all been in your shoes before! The Company Believes In You The interview process is not just a chance for an employer to see whether you are best suited for the role, but also whether you are a good fit for the company and its culture. Therefore, it is highly unlikely that an employer will have offered you a job if they didn’t think you would be able to ingratiate yourself with your new colleagues. Business is built upon strong foundations and values; therefore, an employer will build a team around individuals who resonate with the values of the company and put them into practice during their work. So, if you have been offered a role within the business, your employer believes that you and their team share common values, attitudes to work, and encourage the interests of others. So, with that in mind, your new work colleagues may not seem as mysterious or as enigmatic as you first thought! Everyone Was Once the New Guy Everybody has been in your place before. It’s that simple! In the world of employment, navigating through a new work environment is a shared experience that everyone has had at some point in their lives, which is good news for you! Your new team will know exactly what you’re going through and understand that your first few days may leave you feeling quite overwhelmed. You may find that you receive messages of welcome and encouragement from the workspace as your name is passed around. Make sure to acknowledge these and respond by saying that you look forward to getting to know them better! Your transition into your new role will be made so much easier if you accept the support of your colleagues. Just Say Hello! You may be a socialite. You may be a wallflower. Regardless of the level of enjoyment you gain when interacting with others, sooner or later, you are going to come into contact with the people you work with. So when faced with a new colleague, just say hello! You’ll no doubt be seeing a lot of each other in the coming weeks, and it's much easier to work alongside people you know you can have a chat with, and vice versa. Once your new team knows you are approachable and communicative, they’re likely to stop by and say hello or offer a conversation that may take the stress off the workday. We’re all human after all, so find out who you’ll be working alongside and make contact! Take Advantage of Team Socials Similar to the previous point, the best way to ingratiate yourself with your fellow work colleagues is to take part in any activities, events or social gatherings your team will organise. This could be as simple as breaking bread together during the lunch hour or joining members of the team for gatherings outside of work. For instance, you may find that an impromptu Friday night cocktail hour helps to ease social stress. In addition, it also removes the notion that the only thing you share in common with your colleagues is work. Establishments will often organise team-building events or days out for employees to enjoy, or company-exclusive classes and workshops. Take advantage of these opportunities, as the more you spend time with your team outside of the work environment, the more you’ll get to know them and vice versa. Work is always easier when you’re surrounded by friends! Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help I have no doubt that at least one member of your new job will have mentioned this to you, but it is worth reiterating. You need to dispel the idea that your new employers are expecting you to fully acclimate yourself to the companies’ practices and methods on the first day, then start raising turnover by 70% on the second. You have the collective knowledge and experiences of the members of your team at your disposal, so don’t be afraid to ask questions or check your work with them for any errors. Employers would rather you ask questions and get things correct than let mistakes slip through. You Will Make Mistakes, And It’s Only Natural Continuing on from the previous point, sooner or later, you may find yourself making an error with a particular task or piece of work assigned to you. The important thing to remember is that your employer will be prepared for this. Now, this isn’t a personal attack on your ability to perform within the role, but more so acknowledging that when dealing with the information overload that comes with learning a new business, mistakes may slip through. Now, of course, we’re not suggesting that continuous errors will go unnoticed, however, your team will be far more understanding if, after you are shown the correct method of practice, you actively take it upon yourself to avoid the mistake in the future. Ultimately, just don’t be too hard on yourself, these things happen! In Conclusion If ever things get too overwhelming, take a moment to remember; you managed to capture the attention of your new employers with a standout CV, bested your competition by providing a great interview to the employers, and now here you stand, ready to begin your new role. You should be immensely proud of yourself and what you were able to achieve! The first week of work can be quite draining, but the number one thing to remember is that the same colleagues you see chatting and laughing amongst themselves and going off to lunch together were once in the very same position as you are in. It will take time to acclimate yourself to your new surroundings, but know you are surrounded by a plethora of support every day.
5 Common Interview Questions and How to Answer Them
5 Common Interview Questions and How to Answer Them
Whether you have been working in the same company for several years, or if you’ve been working within a wide array of industries in a variety of roles, at some point, we have all experienced the ‘Job Interview.’ We each have our own experiences with job interviews, some good, and some, unfortunately, less so. Interviews can be a very daunting concept, with the mounting pressure that the next step of your professional career hangs on the balance of your performance within the next 30–60 minutes. However, like many challenges in life, this process can be made significantly less stressful and much more successful with the right amount of preparation. Therefore, we have compiled a list of some of the most popular questions that an employer will ask you during an interview, and crucially, what the employer is hoping to learn about you from the answer you give. Familiarise yourself with how you should approach each question and the traps you could fall into. Think of ways you can apply the given examples to your own experience and you’re sure to leave your next interview feeling full of confidence. Tell me a little bit about yourself and what has led you to applying for this role? What may on the surface seem a relatively innocuous question, it is actually one of, if not the most important question of the interview. This is most likely the first time you and your potential employer will be sat face to face, and they are going to want to see how you hold yourself, convey information and how you act when meeting new people. Answers given may also provide openings to further conversation, though try not to waffle. My advice would be to give a brief overview of your education and relevant experience, the moment, or ‘thing’ that attracted you to this particular industry and a ‘golden skill’ that has allowed you to become successful in your working life. Wrap this answer up with your career goal and its close link to the role that you are being interviewed for and you will have provided a very strong introduction to your interviewers. Can you describe your Strengths and Weaknesses? This question can prove to be somewhat of a ‘gotcha’ moment in the interview if you are not prepared, as the interviewer will not only be interested in your direct response to this question, but the manner in which you address it: Strengths The key thing to keep in mind when answering this question is to not come across as boastful or arrogant. Of course, you are going to want to sell yourself as the perfect candidate for the job, however there is a fine line between providing relevant skills vs listing your long and attributed list of accolades. Employers will be looking for skills relevant to the role, so study the job description and focus on three key qualities you possess that can be directly applied to the role. Make sure to give relevant examples too! Weaknesses Despite what the word weakness implies, you’re going to want to avoid being too negative when providing this answer. The key when answering this question, is to let the employer know that you have recognised an area of personal weakness, and that you are taking steps to improve upon this so that it will no longer hinder your performance at work. It is important to give examples of the steps you have taken to improve, show your current progress, and emphasize that your progress has been acknowledged. Example – I would say my greatest weakness, is the fact that I sometimes find it quite hard asking other people for help. I tend to try and figure things out for myself, instead of asking the people in my team for guidance, which would be a faster way of working. Having said that, I am seeking to improve on this, and have since become more mindful of situations where this may occur in the future. Why do you want to work for us? This is a great opportunity to convey your passion and interest in not just the role, but the company as a whole. Preparation for this question is key, as knowledge of a company’s history, practices and its various accolades that have incentivised you to apply for this position, shows an employer that you acknowledge the companies’ key practices, ethics and progression within the industry. Discuss how this particular role is best suited to your own particular set of skills, and that your values and goals are aligned with those of your employer. What are your salary expectations? This question is almost certain to come up at some point, and if you aren’t prepared, it can cause a moment of panic in an interview. You don’t want to price yourself out of the job by asking for a salary that is too high, neither do you want to undervalue yourself and end up getting paid a lesser amount than what you could, or should, be working for. In order to avoid an uneasy atmosphere, prepare your response in advance. Research similar roles within the field and look out for consistencies in pay. The job you’re applying for may even have a listed salary attached to the description. We here at Sigmar prepare a yearly salary guide that covers many different roles in a wide range of industries. Take a look at this year’s guide, it will give you a good starting point when considering the salary being offered to you. This link will take you to our Sigmar Salary Guide: https://www.sigmarrecruitment.com/blog/2022/02/salary-guide-2022 How would you deal with potential conflict in the workplace? This question is an open door to an employer for assessing your level of emotional intelligence. By demonstrating your capacity for empathy, and your understanding of different personality types, you will show that you are highly emotionally intelligent, and understanding that ‘teamwork makes the dream work.’ However, you will want to be mindful of not appearing overly negative when answering this question. Generally, negativity should be avoided during an interview, however, like our assessment of the question regarding personal weakness, there are ways to address negative issues in a constructive way. Key points in the right direction are to lead with empathy and compassion, focus on your own subjective experience without pointing out flaws in others, and replace ‘but’ with ‘and,’ which deescalates a conversation from an argument to a discussion. In Conclusion Of course, we have only covered a select few questions in this post, and no doubt you will have come across one or two more ‘repeat questions’ in different interviews. We will be exploring further interview questions in later posts, however, these 5 questions are certainly amongst the more popular questions interviewers will pose to you, so preparing you’re answers to these will certainly increase your chances of a successful interview.