Advice for Job Interviews

BALTIMORE - Lt. j.g. Max Murray, the Partnerships in Education coordinator at Coast Guard Sector Baltimore, shakes hands with Cameron Faulkner-Walker during a mock interview at the Maritime Industries Academy in Baltimore, Md., April 29, 2010. “The sole purpose in doing this is to prepare high school students to integrate into a highly competitive job market or educational system,” said Murray. “In Baltimore we work with a diverse group that were are here to give them insight into the intricacies of finding a job verses finding a career.” U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Robert Brazzell.

You may not be looking for work today, but there’s a chance that, at some time in your life, you will find yourself interviewing for a job. In order to help you prepare, we are currently developing a guide for “job seekers,” which will enable you to dazzle and stun your interviewer, should the occasion arise.

We haven’t finished our guide yet, but here is a sample, just to whet your appetite:

  • Interviewer: How do you handle conflicts between your business life and your personal life?
  • Discussion: Your first inclination might be to make outrageous claims about how devoted you are to your work. You might be tempted to say something like this:

    My whole life centers around my job. Even if I weren’t paid, I would still want nothing more than to work for your company. There aren’t enough hours in the day to spend working, even though I have learned how to do my job in my sleep.

  • Discussion: Even though your interviewer doesn’t think that business is the most important thing in his life, he is still expecting you to tell him how important his business is in your life.
  • Discussion: That answer is a blatant lie, and unless the interviewer is a complete moron (which is possible), he won’t believe you. Does this mean that you should tell the truth? A genuine answer might be something like this:

    Well really, work is a part of my life, but only part of it. So if there’s a conflict between my job and the things that really matter to me, then I’ll spend my time doing what’s really important. I mean, seriously, if you want mindless obedience, buy a robot.

  • Discussion: If your interviewer is honest, this might not cost you any chance of getting the job, as long as every other applicant hasn’t bathed in over a year and is a walrus with a criminal record.

“Coast Guard unit assists local school DVIDS1095033,” by Petty Officer 3rd Class Robert Brazzell. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons. Original Image Modified by The Flying News.

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