I’ve been working at the same place for just shy of three years. In that time, I’ve learned a whole lot, but between budget issues and the fact that I’ve fished the pond clean, it’s time for a change. And by change I mean new job. I like where I work, so it isn’t completely pressing to leave after the first offer. It’s nice to see where you are, and we all know that jumping jobs is really the only way to get a raise.
To get a new job, you’ve gotta do the interview process. I’ve been a finalist a few times and done around seven or so interviews to the point where my responses are essentially automatic. Hell, I even live-tweeted an interview once because content never sleeps.
Like the SAT/ACT/LSAT/GRE or whatever other standardized bullshit our society makes us jump hoops through, the interview process is a “necessary evil.” Some people look great on paper but are a total dingus if you meet them in person.
The one thing that never gets old is fielding the same damn questions over and over again. Some of them are even pretty hilarious. For example, “Do you know how to use Microsoft Office?” Every time I get asked this question, my blood pressure spikes but I internally hold down the fort. I’ve kept a running list of them and for your enjoyment. Although not verbatim, you can get a sense as I’m sure many of you have been asked the same stupid shit yourselves.
Question 1: Where did you find out about this opportunity?
What I wanted to say: Oh you know, the only place where you can find this, ON YOUR HR SITE.
What I did say: Johnny Dicknballs (someone I vaguely know in their department) told me about how great an opportunity it would be to work here so I just HAD to.
Question 2: Do you know how to use Microsoft Office? Are you familiar with Excel/emailing/whatever other technological thing we’ve been bred to do since gradeschool?
What I wanted to say: Ma’am, I was born in the last 30 years. I’ve been working on Microsoft office since DOS and Windows 95. Every year since first grade, I’ve taken some form of computer or typing/word processing class. I am also not an idiot and can Google and figure it out if I don’t know it.
What I did say: Of course! I use it regularly with success. I have a strong background in Microsoft Office.
Question 3: Why do you want to work here?
What I wanted to say:
What I did say: This job has a lot of opportunity for growth and I greatly respect what you and your colleagues are doing.
Question 4: What makes you the best candidate?
What I wanted to say: I have no idea. Bill Gates could have applied. For starters, I am not an idiot. I graduated college in the past five years, so unlike many of the other people that work here, I am technologically savvy. Not enough? I regularly make food for everyone at work on a gourmet level, I am punctual, I am an expert at Googling so my problems won’t become yours and my work motto is “figure it the fuck out”.
What I did say: I am a team player, I am highly coachable, I work well independently as well as part of a team, I am highly skilled in all forms of Office as well as most statistical/survey programs.
Question 4: Tell me a time about someone you work with that was difficult.
What I did say: I have only had a few minor issues, mostly relating to disrespect. In the end, we worked out our differences, found common ground and got the job done (and I totally didn’t write about them anonymously on the internet).
Question 5: Finally, what is your greatest strength and weakness?
What I wanted to say: Greatest strength, greatest strength…hmmmm. I am punctual. If you give me a task I will figure it out because I am competent. Greatest weakness? I have a low tolerance for bullshit and will likely troll you without you knowing.
What I did say: I don’t know a stranger. I make connections easily and maintain relationships well. Greatest weakness? I take too much on my plate. People know I get things done and will often ask me to help (this is great for this question by the way. You are all welcome to use it if you don’t already).
There are certainly other questions, but these are the ones that stood out to me. Got a few questions you’d like to share what you’d do? I’d love to hear about it so share it below or hit me up on Twitter..