Techniques for successful job interviewing
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TRENDS IN JOB INTERVIEWING. 1 Nick Morgan, “How to Ace an Interview”, Harvard Management Update, ( April 2003). 2 Clive Muir, “Managing the Initial Job Interview: Smile, Schmooze, and Get Hired?” Academy of Management Executive, ( February 2005 ), 156.

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TRENDS IN JOB INTERVIEWING

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TRENDS IN JOB INTERVIEWING

1 Nick Morgan, “How to Ace an Interview”, Harvard Management Update, (April 2003).

2 Clive Muir, “Managing the Initial Job Interview: Smile, Schmooze, and Get Hired?” Academy of Management

Executive, (February 2005), 156.

The University of Arizona – Human Resources

“…think of an interview as having two purposes: establishing basic

trust with the interviewer, and giving the interviewer a few clear facts

about what you can do for the company.”1

“In essence you need to ‘connect’ with the interviewer interpersonally.”2


INTERVIEW METHODS

Here are some typical types of interviews. What are the challenges to consider for each type?

  • Structured – Responsibilities and duties of position frame the questions; questions designed to discover specific qualifications; criteria for correct answers pre-determined and fixed.

  • Unstructured – Also called ‘non-directive’ interviews; no set list of questions; sometimes used not generally thought to be effective.

  • Telephone Screening – Generally used as an initial screening method; looking for reasons to remove candidates for consideration.

  • One to One – The most common format; often have one or more of this type of interview for a job with the same or different people; may be combined with panel interviews.

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


INTERVIEW METHODS

Here are some typical types of interviews. What are the challenges to consider for each type?

  • Panel – Typical in academia and health care; group interview highlights ability to express leadership, interpersonal skills and ability to “think on your feet”; designed to observe interviewee’s reactions in a group setting.

  • Series – Move from person to person; often in conjunction with panel interviews.

  • Assessment Center – Relatively uncommon; many candidates brought in at the same time; utilize various interview methods including case studies; group exercises and simulations; same question may be given to multiple candidates who are in the same room

  • Stress – Used to deliberately test your coping skills; relatively uncommon and used to determine if you can ‘think on your feet’ while under stress. Interviewers may intentionally be sarcastic, confrontational , rude or challenging.

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


THE INTERVIEW PROCESS

Interviewer

Candidate

-Analyze & define

skills & qualifications

-Prepare job profile

-Analyze posting

-Research organization

-Apply for position

-Develop potential

questions w/ responses

-Prepare for interview

-Develop questions

-Prepare for interview

-Conduct interview

-Ask questions

-Respond to questions

-Build rapport

-Ask questions

-Rate & Select

-Follow up

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


Key Skills:

Qualifications:

THINK LIKE AN INTERVIEWER…

Preparing a Job Profile

Prepare for your interview by developing a “working” job profile.

Using a job posting or job description:

  • List the key skills necessary for job-required duties and responsibilities.

  • List the important qualifications for the position.

-Starting point in designing a job

-Build from this foundation

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


THINK LIKE AN INTERVIEWER…

Question Formats

Job-Related

To determine your current knowledge and capabilities for the position.

What do you know about our competition?

How will you help the organization?

Behavioral

To define your experience looking back. Describe a time when you…

Give an example of a time when you…

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


THINK LIKE AN INTERVIEWER…

Question Formats

Situational

To determine your likely behavior in the future based on hypothetical situations.

What if you and your team disagree?

In this position how will you . . .?

Stress

To determine how you deal with stress. Stay calm

Don’t take it personally

Endure the ‘silent treatment

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


THINK LIKE AN INTERVIEWER…

Question Formats

Brain Teaser

To determine how well candidates can logically and creatively think on their feet.

How far apart are the minute and hour hand of a clock at 3:15?

Why is a manhole cover round?

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


THINK LIKE AN INTERVIEWER…

Creating Job-Related Questions

Job Related questions may test your knowledge of the position, the company,

the institution, and the industry.

Using the information from your job profile on page 5, create 3 job related questions:

1.

2.

3.

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


RESPONDING TO JOB RELATED QUESTIONS

This exercise will require you to work with a partner.

Find a partner with whom you can exchange job related questions.

One of you is the interviewer, the other is being interviewed.

Interviewer ask the job related questions. Candidate, answer as you would in an interview. Begin the interview.

Interviewer provide feedback on the question and the answer.

-Is the question clearly job related?

-Was the answer specific and concise?

4. Switch roles and repeat.

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


THINK LIKE AN INTERVIEWER…

Creating Behavioral Questions

Behavioral questions are about past experiences and are used as predictors of future success.

Using the information from your job profile on page 5, create 2 behavioral questions:

1.

2.

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


RESPONDING TO BEHAVIORAL QUESTIONS: STORYTELLING

The creation of one-to-two minute stories of your experiences, skills and accomplishments are especially useful for behavioral based questions.

Define a challenge, a problem or situation you faced,

such as being required to:

  • Meet objectives with same or fewer resources.

  • Increase efficiency.

  • Develop something for the first time.

  • Prepare original papers, reports, articles.

  • Manage work group or department.

  • Save the organization money.

  • Increase production.

  • Identify problem others did not see.

  • Meet goals under difficult circumstances.

    Describe the actions you took to meet the challenge.

    Explain the results of your actions.

Challenge:

Actions:

Results:

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


MIRRORING & MATCHING

Mirroring and matching the expressions, posture, rate of speech and tone of voice is a good non-verbal communication technique.

This exercise requires that you work with a partner.

  • With your partner, exchange behavioral questions. One of you is the interviewer, the other is being interviewed.

  • Interviewer ask the behavioral questions. Candidate answer as you would in an interview (use storytelling) while paying attention to mirroring and matching the interviewer. Begin the interview.

  • Interviewertake notes &provide feedback on what worked and what needs improvement.

    4.Switch roles and repeat.

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


TWO GUARANTEED QUESTIONS

  • Tell me about you?

  • Why are you leaving your current position?

Personal Infomercial:

Memorize a 30-60 second summary.

-Who you are

-Where you have been

-Where you are going

Reason for Leaving Statement:

Be brief, positive, truthful.

I’ve enjoyed working at XX for the past XX

years, and now I’m looking for an

opportunity to make a new contribution.

I was hired as an XX, and after a few

months it was clear that the position

was not a good fit for my skills.

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


MORE EXAMPLES OF QUESTIONS YOU MAY BE ASKED

GENERAL

  • Tell me about yourself?

  • What is your approach to managing others?

  • Why did you apply for this position?

    JOB RELATED

  • What do you know about this position?

  • What do you see as the direction of this company?

  • How will you help our organization?

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


MORE EXAMPLES OF QUESTIONS YOU MAY BE ASKED

SITUATIONAL

  • In your department you may be pulled in many directions at once. How will you manage your priorities and time?

  • Assume you are working in a project in which you need to get people to work together effectively. How will you do this

    BEHAVIORAL

  • Describe a time when you inspired others to reach a common goal?

  • What was your biggest decision in the past year? Why?

  • Tell me about a time when you anticipated a potential problem and developed successful prevention measures

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


QUESTIONS TO ASK THEM

Do you have any questions for us?

  • Keep your questions focused on the work, the tasks, or the function.

  • Avoid jumping to your needs before an offer is made.

    The types of questions you ask and how you ask them do as much to

    differentiate you from the competition as the ones you answer. For example:

  • How will you know if the person you hire for this position is successful?

  • Can you tell me why this position is open?

  • Can you describe your organizational culture?

  • What are the greatest challenges facing the person in this position?

  • What are the organizations plans for growth in the next 3-5 years?

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


PRACTICE & REHEARSE

Successful job seekers know what to expect. They prepare for the interview by:

  • Researching the organization to determine the skills and qualifications a

    successful candidate will need.

  • Preparing sample questions with complete responses.

  • Rehearsing their responses, including one to two minute stories.

  • Practicing their rapport building skills.

For additional support…

Human Resources

Employee & Career Advising

621-2376 or 626-0850www.hr.arizona.edu/ecadvising

The University of Arizona – Human Resources


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