Interview from hell

Interviewing is the worst.  Does anyone have any idea what they are doing other than attempting to ingratiate yourself at every turn? I certainly don’t.  I am doing everything in my power to appear that I have some remote clue, but I don’t.

In my most recent interview, I was asked seven questions. I saw the questions beforehand, and I was allowed to answer them & make notes if necessary. Then we went into the interview room where three women sat poised w/ paper & pencil to take notes on my answers to the seven questions. I could answer the questions in any order I chose. This was an opportunity to display my creativity, I suppose, but the position itself was creative, so that would be addressed in time w/ my portfolio. Or so I thought . . .

I was so intimidated by the whole situation that I simply reiterated the questions, verbatim & added my answers. My portfolio never even came up. They kept it for viewing later.  I’ve never had an interview where someone isn’t asking me to tell them a bit about myself. But it seemed that whatever I’d put down on my application was sufficient.

These were the the questions:

1) Based on your knowledge or experience, how does news writing and editing differ from other forms or writing?

2) Describe the key difference (s) between “sales” and “marketing.”

This position requires the ability to organize a variety of marketing and communications tasks.  Tell us about the tools and techniques you use or used in the past to:

3)  Stay organized:

4)  Determine priorities:

5)  Meet deadlines:

6)  Tell us about a time when you were not able to meet a deadline or fulfill a commitment. How did you go about reorganizing your work and explaining your situation to the people relying on you?

7)  This position requires times when you have to rely on others to get your work completed on time. How will you go about approaching a staff member who is not meeting the timeframes you set to accomplish a task?

So that’s it. That’s all they asked of me. I was then allowed to ask questions of them.  I should have thrown these same questions back at them. But I wasn’t clever enough to think of that. I pressed on in my tried and true interview style, making great eye contact w/ each of my interrogators while babbling on about who knows what.

Later I could see how some of my values were expressed, at least in some of the answers I gave.  But I don’t seem particularly resourceful, or creative.  If anything, I was mind-numbingly boring w/ my rote responses.

So, does anyone out there have some insight they would like to share? If nothing else, maybe these questions will be helpful to someone.





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