We are the world, we are the children, we are the ones that make you laugh…
There are many questions designed to throw people off. It’s all about being human and learning to react and answer things correctly. It’s about adapting our communication styles.
Tell me about yourself? Or tell me about what’s been happening with you?
The most often asked question in interviews. It is also a loaded question, before answering look the interviewer in the eyes, smile and ask where would you like me to begin? NOTE: Where the interviewer wants you to begin is a hint as to what is IMPORTANT to them.
Why did you leave your last job?
Stay positive regardless of the circumstances. Never refer to a major problem with management and never speak ill of supervisors, co-workers or the organization. If you do, you will be the one looking bad. Keep smiling and talk about leaving for a positive reason such as an opportunity, a chance to do something special or other forward-looking reasons. Use reference of the personality types as they relate to your values and the corporate culture.
Do you have any blind spots?
Trick question. If you know about blind spots, they are no longer blind spots. Do not reveal any personal areas of concern here. Let them do their own discovery on your bad points. Do not hand it to them.
Do you think you are overqualified for this position?
There is NO such thing as overqualified. Overqualified means the interviewer is worried you will get bored and leave or you can do the job better than them and they might be out of work if they hire you. When asked this question, look the interviewer in the eye and ask, “So what you are saying is that your company does not want to make more money?”
TIP: Be completely QUIET and let the interviewer answer your question after which say you are willing to sign a minimum 2 year service with the company and that you need a chance to prove how much you can contribute to the company.
What seems to be getting in the way of you having the career of your dreams?
Emphasize that you need a chance to prove what a valuable asset you will be to the company. Talk about your passion for the industry and needing a break to be taught and work for an outstanding company such as the one you are interviewing with. You can acknowledge you might be nervous in an interview or that you are new to the field. Your honesty will be appreciated.
I had candidate who arrived from Israel fresh off the boat and had only been in Canada for three weeks. This individual had a masters degree in computer science and 29 diplomas in computers. And I don’t mean some college in the corner, I’m talking Microsoft systems engineer to the highest level Cisco systems engineer to the highest level Novell, Nortel, Linux, UNIX and more. His lowest grade was a 92%. One of my clients was a news agency who needed a Linux administrator to work from midnight to 8 AM and they were paying about $30,000 below market. I sent this individual to this company and they refused to interview him because he did not have Canadian experience. I faxed over his diplomas and emphasized that this guy is considered one of the smartest individuals in the computer world there is. My client refused to even talk to him because he did not have Canadian experience. So I asked the client if he went to Tim Horton’s and worked for three months would they hire him as a Linux administrator because he had Canadian experience. They said yes. I fired the client on the spot and two weeks later found this individual a position for over $120,000 as a I found a company that understood just how valuable this new immigrant and his knowledge is.
How long would you expect to work for us if hired?
You are looking for a long term career, a company you can call your new family, one where your contributions will make an impact on the company’s revenues and overall growth. REMEMBER: The interview is about them (the company).
Do you have Canadian Experience?
There is NO such thing as Canadian Experience. In fact, it is ILLEGAL to ask for Canadian Experience, especially since Canada is one of the MOST multicultural and dynamic countries in the world. Canadian experience means: can you communicate clearly and the company is concerned that if hired and they had to give you feedback you might react in a way that is inappropriate. The company is afraid of confrontations and wants to make sure they can give you constructive criticism and feedback when necessary without worrying that you will take it personally and react harshly. Emphasize your adaptability and flexibility and the fact that you need a chance to prove what an asset you are to the company. DO NOT be afraid to ask for a break or chance, be humble, explain that you are here to work for the company and as an employee you can make or save money or increase efficiency.
When a family member first came to Canada you could not find a job in his profession for nine and half months. He was told that he doesn’t have Canadian experience even though he’s fluent in several languages. This individual approached a small company and offered to work for free for one month. If at the end of the month the company felt that his work was not as good as any Canadian project manager the company did not have to pay for the month of work however if after a month they like the quality of his work they would pay him for the month and hire him full time. Within two weeks the individual became the senior project manager for the entire company because he had the work ethic and the years of experience to back his knowledge.
You don’t have experience or enough experience, this concerns us as you might not know what to do on the job?
Be humble! Say that you have a lot to offer to the company. If necessary to impress offer to work for free for a specified amount of time to show how serious you are,
TIP: Most companies will be flattered and impressed and re-assure you that it would not be necessary to work for free. You can also ask the interviewer if they remember who gave them a chance when they were first starting out. Once the interviewer finishes acknowledge their story and say that you need them to do the same for you.
When in doubt in doubt always blame it on technology:
This might be a very creative answer and work more in marketing and technology interviews…