Saturday, June 25, 2011

Let's Just Change the Subject

As most of you know, I'm currently between jobs. This means that I have begun the process of interviewing. Just in case any prospective employers are reading this, let me just say that I realize that the interview process is essential to the selection of job candidates, and add that I feel I bring a pretty ample skill set to the table when it comes to being part of the workforce.

That being said, interviews are not my favorite.

I think a big part of it is the questions that you get asked during an interview. I can do fairly well with the specific ones. I can explain pretty clearly how I would be an asset to any given company, talk about my job experiences, etc. Those questions are all fine and good, and pretty straightforward and easy to answer.

It's the bigger questions that are trickier There are two in particular that I used to find downright nerve-wracking, although I'm getting better about not allowing my nerves to get wracked:

1. "Tell us about yourself." -- This one trips me up on first dates as well. The variant, "Tell us a little about yourself" isn't much better. Usually I end up regurgitating the short short version of my life story: where I grew up, where I went to school, blah blah blah. This is usually the point where I wish I had at least one exciting or unusual hobby, like white-water rafting or playing the accordion. When your hobbies are reading, writing, watching movies, and listening to music, you start to feel a little bit generic.

2. "Where do you see yourself in five years?" -- I imagine that, in a corporate setting, the correct answer would be one or two steps up the corporate ladder. And I'm just ambitious enough to buy into that vision. But, really, it's kind of a silly question. I could be married in five years. Or living in Fiji. Or dead. Or kayaking while playing the accordion. Or sitting at a computer in a public library blogging. 

Hopefully, any prospective employers who are reading this will realize that I can communicate effectively, especially in writing, and that I have a sense of humor and creativity. Those look good on a resume, right?

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