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Old 07-05-2014, 02:53 PM   #1
[HLR] totlxtc
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New job - TIPS

Hey guys,

OK I have had a little bad news over the past couple of weeks and I will be out of a job at the end of June after working in my current position for the past 9 years.

Now I know a lot of you come from all walks of life and have a large amount of experience between you. So I am asking for a little help.

I have done a lot of leg work and had some help finding jobs etc (been looking since June 2013) but what I feel I may struggle on is the interviews. Now I have not had many so far as I only ramped up my search in the past 3 months. Next week I have 2 interviews for 2 very promising jobs. So what I am asking is can anyone offer any tips?

Is it right now to go in an interview in a suit? I know that's a silly question but some companies frown on a suit, especially companies that are creative. They want to see "smart" but not "tea boy smart".

What other tips can you offer?

(Please serious tips please, need to sort this before it goes t*ts up)

Cheers for any help.

-Dan
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Old 07-05-2014, 03:40 PM   #2
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As someone who has run a business for the past ten years and interviewed numerous people in that time for different roles I can say that, for me at least, a good first impression is important. So looking smart is a good starting point. It doesn't have to be a suit, just as long as you look as though you have taken some care in your appearance. Every employee is a representative of a company and what you look and dress like is how that company is portrayed to the public.

Next I'd say, fully understand the role you are going for and a bit about the company. Read up about it, if you can talk to people who do it or work there will be a huge benefit. Make sure in the interview you have something to say and add. A good way of doing that is speak to about the role and the company, proving that you have spent time looking into the job and company, therefore proving you are serious about it.

And show some passion and commitment. Don't be scared to tell them that you want to join a company that has a future for you. You have to make them want you, to make them feel if they don't offer you the job they are going to be missing out and someone else will get the benefit of you.

I would honestly say that enthusiasm and passion are half the battle. Employers can mould you to what they want you to be in terms of skills but it's much harder for them to change an unenthusiastic person into one who has the right attitude. Show them you have the right attitude at the interview and you'll be onto a winner.

It's always worth having a couple of examples of how you have overcome difficulties with jobs in the past, or how you've worked with a team to solve a problem, or changed a procedure for the better. Don't be scared to give input without them asking for it. Don't just sit back and answer their questions. At the correct times, give your own input, show some initiative, another good trait to show them you have.

So in summing up, look smart, be confident, be enthusiastic and have plenty of relevant stuff to say. Do that and you'll give yourself a chance. And the very best of luck

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Old 07-05-2014, 03:50 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Slim View Post
As someone who has run a business for the past ten years and interviewed numerous people in that time for different roles I can say that, for me at least, a good first impression is important. So looking smart is a good starting point. It doesn't have to be a suit, just as long as you look as though you have taken some care in your appearance. Every employee is a representative of a company and what you look and dress like is how that company is portrayed to the public.

Next I'd say, fully understand the role you are going for and a bit about the company. Read up about it, if you can talk to people who do it or work there will be a huge benefit. Make sure in the interview you have something to say and add. A good way of doing that is speak to about the role and the company, proving that you have spent time looking into the job and company, therefore proving you are serious about it.

And show some passion and commitment. Don't be scared to tell them that you want to join a company that has a future for you. You have to make them want you, to make them feel if they don't offer you the job they are going to be missing out and someone else will get the benefit of you.

I would honestly say that enthusiasm and passion are half the battle. Employers can mould you to what they want you to be in terms of skills but it's much harder for them to change an unenthusiastic person into one who has the right attitude. Show them you have the right attitude at the interview and you'll be onto a winner.

It's always worth having a couple of examples of how you have overcome difficulties with jobs in the past, or how you've worked with a team to solve a problem, or changed a procedure for the better. Don't be scared to give input without them asking for it. Don't just sit back and answer their questions. At the correct times, give your own input, show some initiative, another good trait to show them you have.

So in summing up, look smart, be confident, be enthusiastic and have plenty of relevant stuff to say. Do that and you'll give yourself a chance. And the very best of luck

Thank you Slim for your response. I know it sounds silly about "What to wear", but over the years of working I have heard such contradicting statements. Of course I will go in dressed up smartly, shoes polished, shirt ironed etc...but there is a big void to "How smart to dress" in the design industry. I have been in interviews with people who have come in for positions here and they are all suited and booted but almost laughed out behind their back as they look like the photocopying guy or tea boy. I understand if I was working as an accountant or in a strict office job then a suit would be the way to go but in my industry it is an odd one. I have known people to come in with jeans and shirt and get the job.

Luckily throughout life when I get nervous I get enthusiastic and can talk the talk (Comes in handy dating too!). And pretty confident about what I can do.

I have printed out a copy of the job specs and going to look over the weekend at their work and taste for design. Fingers crossed!
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Old 07-05-2014, 04:00 PM   #4
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Nice post Slim ..
Dan,
Make eye contact & keep it relevant,
have a couple of questions for them that don't involve money or holidays ..
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Old 07-05-2014, 04:07 PM   #5
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lol oh I would never involve those! Just looks like you are there just for the cash and when you can get away! Which ultimatly we are in it for the money but job satisfaction means just as much to me. Past 3 years here have been a miserable existence of more hours, less pay, not being paid on time, having to bring in your own tea/coffee/milk/loo roll etc...

Luckily both positions are quite exciting, money and benefits I already know so that should not be an issue. One is for a large retail company and the other is a mid sized design agency.
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Old 07-05-2014, 04:13 PM   #6
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I'm a contractors (glorified temp), so go through interviews every few months.

Under no circumstances, ever, turn up in anything other than a suit. As @Slim stated, 1st impressions are 90% of the battle. If you don't want to be tea boy, wear a suit with a little personality in it. The single most important factor is that you are comfortable. As the term suit and comfort / self consciousness take getting used to, I usually wear a different suit ALL DAY, beforehand, then a quick change before the interview. This way you'll get gradually less uncomfortable and you get used to the feel and temperature increase, giving you a little more comfort on the interviews. This could just be my daft mind set, but works for me.

Actual interview advice, wear your heart on your sleeve, be yourself. Don't say what you 'think' they want to hear. You need to advertise yourself as an individual, not a run of the mill. They clearly liked your CV enough to shortlist you, so be yourself.

Don't overthink things, just do a little background research on the company, where it's been / going, and how you want to fit in to it.

Mostly, relax.


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Old 07-05-2014, 06:38 PM   #7
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As someone who seems to have a general disposition towards crapness in interviews I'm probably the last person to give advice, but I will anyway. I didn't have any experience in my current industry when I started this job, and my degrees are in a completely different discipline, but I ended up getting my current job by going to the opposite end of the country and shadowing the boss for a couple of days (for free, although I was paid petrol money to get down there), so not an interview as such, but I have sat in on a couple before or since.

The main advice I would give is be true to yourself. No point making yourself out to be brilliant at something you're not - you'll just come across as a complete ****. Instead, be honest with yourself, analyse your strengths and weaknesses and don't be afraid to admit those weaknesses in the interview (although if you can turn them into a positive or show how you overcome them so much the better).

It sounds like you're going for a much bigger company than I'm employed at, but I can't see a big company looking for much different aspects than we do. Slim's advice about passion and enthusiasm is excellent - I know that that would get you further applying to our company than being technically proficient but lazy.

As others have said, wear the suit. So what if the other staff laugh at you for it, it's the interviewer you're trying to impress. And it's much better to be overdressed for an interview than underdressed and imply you don't care.

Finally (and this shouldn't need saying but sadly sometimes does), be nice to the receptionist/office manager (not in a Leslie Philips way). There are people who think the role they're applying for means they're below them. Personally, I've never understood that as you all have to work together in your team and if people don't the team won't succeed. It doesn't matter whether someone is head of department or has the lowest ranking job title - they're all important. And you'd be surprised how often that receptionist/office manager has a virtual veto on applicants.
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Old 07-05-2014, 10:03 PM   #8
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As above really,


Good luck is all I can say.

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Old 08-05-2014, 10:21 AM   #9
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Different industries have different expectations, and same with the role applied for. Suit and tie is generally a must but some are happy with shirt tie neatly pressed and clean shoes! Yes people still often look! Reception is always a good one, especially if you get chatting pleasantly about everything and nothing. Don't over egg good AND points. Plenty of we have and less I have, mix it up as you need to clear you have done XYZ

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Old 09-05-2014, 10:22 AM   #10
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Well just found out my counterpart here has got a job which means workload will be on me. This now leaves:

1x MD
1x Project Manager
3x Page Designer (1x PT)
1x Digital Designer (me)

3 years ago it was:

1x MD
2x Manager
1x Design manager
5x Page Designers
6x Illustrators
2x Digital Designers
1x Junior

The poo has hit the fan and NEED to be out of here!
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:48 AM   #11
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:54 AM   #12
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At our peak 6 years ago we were at 36 people. Then the MD sold a program designed specific to a client to one of their competators. Big law suit.

Rest of the time he was on drugs, late night drinking binges with escorts and partying. Then to add the rape case in a pub he owned which once arrested child pornography was found on his laptop. Not good when you work in educational publishing.

The stories I can tell you about this place would make your ears bleed!
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Old 09-05-2014, 01:14 PM   #13
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And now she is leaving my MD is trying to cancel my holiday requests (for interviews) made 2 weeks ago.

If you ever think you are in a crap job come and take my place. You get treated like crap, no payrise in 8 years, you have to buy all the milk, tea, coffee and loo roll yourselves, outdated kit, endless phonecalls for people wanting to be paid, working hours increased from 37-40 but no additional pay, the MD cannot get work as he is on the sex offenders register, no pension, no sickpay, late payment of wages (over past year), wrong amount paid to wages...I could carry on.
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Old 09-05-2014, 02:20 PM   #14
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I know how bad it can get Dan,
we never have enough tea spoons AND my chair squeaks.
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Old 09-05-2014, 02:22 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Judge View Post
I know how bad it can get Dan,
we never have enough tea spoons AND my chair squeaks.

lol thanks mate for bringing a smile to my face
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Old 09-05-2014, 02:23 PM   #16
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... and I thought I had it bad!

Chin up Dan.

Originally Posted by Judge View Post
I know how bad it can get Dan,
we never have enough tea spoons AND my chair squeaks.

Great. Now I've noticed my chair squeaks too. We share a building with another completely unrelated department and one of their guys just throws the dirty teaspoons away if people don't wash them up immediately! It's infuriating.
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Old 09-05-2014, 02:34 PM   #17
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Everyones chair squeaks here. My lumbar support is fubar too. Asked for past 4 years for a new chair! Other things to take note:

Since I have been here nothing has been PAC tested (9 years).
First aid kit has barely anything in and antiseptic wipes went out of date in 1996
Fire Extingushers went out of date in 1999
No one here is first aid qualified
No water machine now since we never paid the bill. Tap water I would not clean my ass with.
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:37 PM   #18
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Do you mean PAT portable appliance testing?

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Old 09-05-2014, 03:38 PM   #19
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lol yes mate
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:39 PM   #20
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Can you even be insured? Can say local fire would sign you off or the HSE !

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Old 09-05-2014, 03:42 PM   #21
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I would say we are uninsured and unsafe to work. If I look around the room there is not a green PAT sticker in the building. Fire alarm has been put on silent too.

Oh and the fire escape has a bookcase in front of it with a locked chain across the door.
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Old 09-05-2014, 05:56 PM   #22
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Just a note for peeps!, if anyone's ever looking for work, I run a recruitment agency for the UK...primarily environmental (Asbestos, Water Treatment, Pest Control, Fire Consultancy and Health & Safety) but have a number of contacts that can help.

Feel free to drop me a message
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:10 PM   #23
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Well after I realised the 4 suits I own I left behind at my old place (some of you may remember me moving at midnight) I went out and got a really nice new suit, few shirts and nice silk tie. You are right about looking the part and usually I feel uncomfortable suited up but have got something I feel good in and can be myself.

Interview for job 1 @ 4pm Wednesday
Interview for job 2 @ 3pm Thursday

I have gone through both job specs and rehearsed answers for possible questions and feel confident coming up to the interviews. To express to you guys what this will mean to me getting out I simply cannot say in words. Thanks for the support and hope to give you good news.
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:15 PM   #24
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On the morning of the interviews, put a shirt on with a slightly tighter than normal collar. Then you feel much more comfy in one that fits

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Old 11-05-2014, 05:42 PM   #25
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Well, I'm sure I speak for everyone on here when I say I hope you get one of the jobs.
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Old 11-05-2014, 06:53 PM   #26
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Are you prepared to relocate?

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Old 11-05-2014, 08:11 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by smokinmasta View Post
Are you prepared to relocate?

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You offering him a job as your full-time live in career smokin?? Lol



But in all seriousness Dan, good luck with the interviews












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Old 11-05-2014, 11:47 PM   #28
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Yes mate as long as it's in a 40 mile radius of Oxford then I would move. Need to be close for little one
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Old 12-05-2014, 11:51 AM   #29
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Do you fancy a job as a Trainee Pest Control Technician? (I'm desperate for someone in North Oxfordshire)
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Old 12-05-2014, 11:55 AM   #30
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Thank you for the offer but I become a bit of a wimp at the sight of creepy crawlies...and I actually keep rats lol
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