How many of you are intimidated by that definition? Mutuality: Are you compatible with the organization AND is organization a good match for you? Questions: Allows you to ask questions to find out more about the position, hiring manager and the organization
No matter if the interview is phone, skype or FF. They typically all have the same structure.
I am applying for an internship at University at Buffalo in their Career Development Center.
Split up in groups of 2-3 and assign them to answer a Behavior Based Question using the Star format!!!!
Cara ValentineCareer Development CenterSUNY Buffalo Statevalentc01@buffalostate.edu
Class Year?Major?Career?Interviewed before? How did it go?
What is an interview?Well-prepared formal meeting in which one or more hiring manager(s)question, consult or evaluate your knowledge, skills, experience, attitudes andabilities.
Purpose of an Interview? Move forward in the hiring process! Get the JOB!! Demonstrate your knowledge: Organization The job itself What you can offer them Show your professionalism Opportunity to make a POSITIVE PROFESSIONAL first impression with apotential employer!!!!
Preparing for Interview:Research, Research, RESEARCH!!!Position Organization• Positiondescription, duties, salaryrange, minimumrequirements/qualifications.• Deadline for application andstart date.• Geographic location of theposition.• Who will be interviewing you. Website, LinkedIn, Google! Products or services of the organization. Other employees employed. Age of organization, history and its missionstatement. Current problems, competitors, trends andanything in the news. Parent company and any other divisions. Location(s) of the organization.
Preparing for Interview:What do I bring to thetable…Verifying Interview• Strengths and weakness• Personality characteristics• Relevant skills you have• Experience, training andprevious activities• Contacts!!• Screen calls• Exact interview date & time• Location, parking, whatentrance• Names of interviewer(s)• Map out time/consider trafficduring that time of the day
Proper Interview Attire Wear a suite to every interview! Dress for the job you want, not for the one you have!Men should wear:• Navy, gray or black suit• Solid white or blue button down shirt• Conservative tie• Shined dress shoesWomen should wear:• Navy, gray or black pant or skirt suit• Unpattern blouse with conservative neckline• Basic dark closed toe heels (no higher than 2”)• Neutral sheer hosiery• Minimal amount of make-up
What NOT to Wear Semi- FormalNO JEANS, NO SHORT SKIRTS, NO VESTS!!
What NOT to Wear continued…Quick Tip:Always err on the conservative side with yourclothing and accessories! Remember whatyour clothes say about you… now is not thetime to make a statement about your fashionpreferences!
Types of InterviewsTelephone What you need to know…• Typically, but not always, the first interview (pre-screening candidates)• Free of interruptions and distractions.• Eliminate background noises such aschildren, dogs, cell phones, television, etc.• Have a copy of the version of the resume sent to theinterviewer.• Have a note pad and pen.• Have a minimum of 5 questions you’ll want to askthe interviewer.• Treat the phone interview as seriously as a face-to-face interview!!• Dress up- at least a little.• Talk directly into the mouthpiece & sound upbeat!
Types of InterviewsFace-to-Face, One-on-One What you need to know… Firm handshake and eye contact Bring at least two copies of yourresume Dress professionally Bring note pad and pen Have questions prepared
Types of InterviewsFace-to-Face, Group What you need to know… Firm handshake and eye contactwith everyone Bring multiple copies of yourresume Dress professionally Bring note pad and pen Record the names and titles ofinterviewers Have questions prepared
Types of InterviewsSkype What you need to know… Treat like a face-to-faceinterview! Dress as though you were in aface-to-face interview (even thebottom half). Quiet space withoutdistractions. Test the equipment to avoidtechnical problems
During the Interview:What to expect Introduction Small talk Create rapport Ease nerves Shake hiring manager(s) hand Settle into space (Pull out leather bound notebook, resume and any other additionalmaterial needed) Background analysis Often starts with the “Tell me about yourself” questions Assessing your attitude, self-confidence, ability to communicate How you handle yourself professionally Matching candidate to position Hiring manager will match your background with their needs Move toward deciding whether or not you the type of candidate they are looking for Closing Ask questions/clarifications
Top 5 Interview Questions Tell me about yourself. Where do you see your career in the future? What do you consider to be your greatest strengths? What do you consider to be your greatest weakness? Why should I/we hire you?
Tell me about yourself 2-3 minute response Overview of your educationand professional career Reflect on: Where you came from Education How you picked your field Where you are now Current employment Current organization Where you strive to be What you want to do in 5-10years (Be careful here!!)Well, to start off I was born and raised in Upstate New York about anhour North of Watertown. I graduated from a very small public HighSchool and was one of twenty-two students in my graduating class.From there I completed my undergraduate work at St. LawrenceUniversity where I obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree inMathematics and Statistics. After graduating in 2010, I got acceptedand had plans to attend American University to obtain my Master’sDegree in Statistics. However, I struggled with committing to thatdecision both intellectually and financially so I decided to step intothe working world instead of continuing my education.A few months later I landed a job at MRI Network in Ogdensburg,New York. I was hired as an Account Executive which meant I ran myown desk recruiting sales and marketing professionals nationally inthe medical device and pharmaceutical industries. I learned a lotabout managing my “own business” as well as interviewing, hiringand working with a variety of different people. I was employed therefor roughly 18 months and ultimately decided to make a changebecause I did not enjoy sales and the culture of sales.Through the positive experiences I had at St. Lawrence and as arecruiter, I decided to seek a profession that combined the two:Student Affairs. I began to research and apply to different Higher EdMS programs in the greater Buffalo area. Ultimately, I decided onBuffalo State College due to the Graduate Assistance I was offered atthe Career Development Center. I am currently employed there full-time while completing my graduate degree, also full time. I aspire tobe a career counselor at a college or university.I also have an invested interest in developing relationships withemployers and an open to the opportunity to gain further experiencedoing that in the Higher Education industry.
Deeper meaning: How ambitious and committed are you, can you plan ahead, is this career path a good fit for you, is this employerright for you?How to answer:Don’t be presumptuous or over-confident: the future can change.Stay away from “I’m not really sure” or “I don’t know.”Avoid personal life, but talk about professional goals if they will impact your career (obtaining a Masters).Be realistic and practical; you don’t need to be too honest but be genuine.Reflect on:what you imagine doing in this position and in this career.Right now I’m focused on getting as much experience as I can in career services, networking with other professionals in theindustry and helping the students I work with to the best of my ability. Once I’ve obtained my Master’s Degree my ultimategoal is to received a full-time professional position in Student Affairs at a college or university, preferably in career serviceswith a focus on Employer Relations.
Deeper meaning: Are you honest, passionate, enthusiastic and able to prioritize? Are you confident?Focus on:What sets you apart from othersWhat enabled you to succeed in the pastHow you will be an asset to the employerI believe my greatest strength is my ability to build both strong and positive relationships with others. Ipride myself on being reliable, honest and knowledgeable. By being that way, I’ve found that I can gainrespect and trust fairly quickly from others which has allowed me to connect, build and keep relationshipswith students and employers.
Deeper Meaning: Everyone has something they are working on. If we hire you, what can we do to help you grow?Do you have a weakness that would flagrantly go against our mission?Focus on:What you know about yourself that you are improving upon.Don’t try to evade the question; try to turn a negative into a positive.Avoid using generic responses like: “I’m a perfectionist” or “I’m a workaholic”.My greatest weakness is that I tend to judge and form an opinion on a situation too quickly.Although often times my intuition can be useful when I’m initially working with students, co-workers, or other professionals, sometimes I have to force myself to let go of preconceivednotions/opinions to fully have a positive relationship with said person.
Deeper meaning: We have over 40, 50, 100, 400 etc applicants for this position. What makes you the bestfit for our needs here?Focus on:Your opinion of why you’re the best fit.Matching the employer’s needs with concrete examples of your skills and accomplishments.Be positive and re-emphasis what you spoke about earlier.I am confident that I would make a great fit for the career services internship at University atBuffalo. Given my experiences as a recruiter and a graduate counselor at Buffalo State’s careercenter, I offer both a unique and qualified background that would only aid in my success in thisposition. Most importantly, I am open to learning more about the services your office offersstudents and applying your practices to my future career.See handoutfor morequestions!!
Behavior Based Interview Questions-STAR The Situation Choose a specific situation, which YOU have directly beeninvolved with, not generalized examples Bad answers: Often times I…, A few times I did…, The Task Explain briefly the task(s) associated with the situation The Action Describe the action you took to meet, overcome, resolve orcomplete the task(s) The Results Describe the result of your efforts, positive or negativeThese question are designed to elicit patterns of accomplishments relevant to the hiring managers situation. They are basedon the belief that past performance is a good predictor of how that person will behave in similar situations in the future.
Behavior Based Example Questions Give an example of when you were faced with a challenge and were able toovercome it? Give an example of when you needed to improve a process, how did you goabout doing that? Give an example when you worked as part of a team, what role did you take? Give an example when you had a conflict with a peer, co-worker or a supervisor,how did you handle it? Tell me about a setting when you had to learn something new in a short time. What do you like most/least about your current job? Explain a time where you you’ve had to deal with a disappointment? Give an example of a time you had to be flexible? Give an example when your persistence paid off? Have you ever had to make an unpopular decision/announcement? Describe itand tell me how you handled it?
Behavior Based QuestionsEducation Majors Describe your teaching style and beliefs and tell us how youhave implemented this in the classroom? What steps have you taken prior to parent-teacherconference to ensure its success? What strategies do you use to improve skills of studentswho are far below grade level? Describe the process you have used in dealing with astudent who was disruptive? Describe your experiences working with a diverse studentbody. Tell me about a specific lesson plan or situation that didnot go the way you anticipated?
Candidate Questions Why is this position open? Do you have a history of promoting from within? What keeps you at “ABC Company”? What would my specific duties and responsibilities be inthis role? (Appropriate if company gives you vague JD) Describe a typical day on the job. What is training and development like here? What are example of the best results produced by people inthis job? What is your management style?
CLOSING!!!1) Let them know you have interest in the position!!2) Ask them if there is anything YOU should explainfurther!3) Ask them for the next step Mr. Hiring Manger, I am very interest in moving forward in your interview process, is there anyadditional information that I can provide to you to make you feel comfortable recommendingme for the next step? Ms. Hiring Manager, I am excited about your company and the opportunity we discussed today.Have I answered all of your questions clearly enough? How do you see someone like me fittinginto your organization? HR Manager, This opportunity sound like a great mutual fit and I would like to be considered asa candidate for the next step in the process. When should I expect to hear back from you?
Reasons for Rejection Following anInterview Poor Attitude Appearance Lack of research Not having questions to ask Asking questions you could have easily researched Not readily knowing the answers to interviewers’ questions Relying solely on resume (Employers hire people- not paper!) Too much humility- Its okay to sell yourself Not relating skills to employers’ needs Handling salary issues ineptly Lack of career direction- “Job Hunter” Not having a hard enough close There was a better candidate
During the Interview: DO NOT’s No smoking prior No chewing gum No cell phones (turn off) Talk negatively about organizations, managers, co-workers, etc. Discuss salary unless brought up first
How to Handle Salary Salary discussion should be avoided, if possible. Research the position to get an understanding of the salary range!! Occupational Handbook Simply Hired ORCA/Nacelink DO NOT be the one to bring up salary, benefits or vacation time What if they ask your current salary? Best advice: Answer truthfully!!! What if they ask for your desired salary in the first interview? “I am looking for the right opportunity and I am confident that if you find that I am the best candidate for this position,you will extend me your best and most fair offer.” “ With respect Mr./Ms. Hiring Manager, it seems too early in the process for me to answer that question. If it is alrightwith you I’d like to get a better understanding of the position available, the culture of your organization and the type ofcandidate you are seeking. If at that point this is a mutual fit, I’d be more comfortable discussing salary and benefits withyou.” Salary negotiations are discussed often discussed in final interview or when offer is presented to candidate!! That may mean walking away from a job offer!
Follow Up Thank You LetterALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS send a thank you letterafter every interview!Sample Letter