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Old 2013-02-25, 04:54   Link #61
Azuma Denton
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
Okay, I am preparing for an interview tomorrow morning, and I just realised that I have always flunked in one question, namely "Tell me about yourself".

Can anyone offer tips on this, for someone who is a "drifter" and works from contract to contract, ad-hoc to ad-hoc with absolutely no way to take any reference letters?
No problem.
You can say it like this:
- I am already work in a board range of industry and i can assure you that i have plenty experience in many industry.
- While i never worked too long on one job, i assure you that i have completed a full circle of my contract.

I've rather take a person who finished 5 years experience in one year rather than a person who finished 1 year experience in 5 years.

Last edited by Daniel E.; 2013-02-25 at 08:28.
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Old 2013-02-25, 20:03   Link #62
barcode120x
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Originally Posted by GenjiChan View Post
Just tell the truth....
Not the greatest idea. I don't think it's best to tell the truth completely. You need to be honest, firm, and humble, but to the point where you don't negatively talk about yourself (which is a NEVER). Aside from that, DonQuigleone pretty much hit the spot on the major tips. When I went for an interview for my current job, I told myself to talk to the interviewer as if he were a friend, but in a semi-formal tone. That helped me relax a bit.
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Old 2013-02-25, 20:13   Link #63
NoemiChan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barcode120x View Post
Not the greatest idea. I don't think it's best to tell the truth completely. You need to be honest, firm, and humble, but to the point where you don't negatively talk about yourself (which is a NEVER). Aside from that, DonQuigleone pretty much hit the spot on the major tips. When I went for an interview for my current job, I told myself to talk to the interviewer as if he were a friend, but in a semi-formal tone. That helped me relax a bit.
Hayst, guess I was too broad there. I didn't meant that one to tell a lie but but basically tell what you really good at. Why tell your weak points if you're not asked about it. Unless you're ask to, tell them the truth, but not to the point that "I'm not good at it" or "I'm weak in that field".

Focus on your good points and try to avoid going to you negative points. Lying will get you no where. I'm just saying based on my experience too you know.

I also agree to you when you mentioned, talk to your interviewer as if he/she is a close friend. That reminded of may latest interview. I basically told them my strength and weakness, lols... but I told them though, I never back down on a challenge, whether its my weakness....
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Old 2013-02-25, 20:55   Link #64
willx
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This is incredibly relevant: How to tell your story. http://www.mergersandinquisitions.co...ng-interviews/

But hey, what do I know?
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Old 2013-02-25, 22:17   Link #65
Dr. Casey
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Getting a job is pretty tricky. I wish I went to Hogwarts, because I'm not sure what kind of wizardry I need to pull off to find work and get experience when every job out there seems to require x years of experience (3 years, 5 years, 760 years, pretty much all dishearteningly high numbers).
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Old 2013-02-25, 22:18   Link #66
SaintessHeart
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Got accepted, only on the condition of references. I'll detail what happened during the interview tonight after I get back from my current job.

P.S I treated the interview like a dating sim - realised that if the interviewer smiled, means he/she is interested in getting you in. This means that I have to smile when I am answering questions in order to get something back.
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Most of all, you have to be disciplined and you have to save, even if you hate our current financial system. Because if you don't save, then you're guaranteed to end up with nothing.
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Old 2013-02-26, 02:48   Link #67
Azuma Denton
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Congratz SaintessHearts.
Please do share some of your experience here.
Will do another batch of interview soon. So maybe i can learn one or two new trick from you.
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Old 2013-02-26, 05:54   Link #68
DonQuigleone
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Congrats, hope your references hold up "in court".
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Old 2013-02-26, 06:35   Link #69
SaintessHeart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Azuma Denton View Post
Congratz SaintessHearts.
Please do share some of your experience here.
Will do another batch of interview soon. So maybe i can learn one or two new trick from you.
I simply used your tactic combined with willx's "storytelling", in a humble, non-fiction way. Though I find it incredibly useful to ask "searchlight" questions, like "can you tell me more about my duties?" and "from what I know, this job requires me to do data migration and reinstallation of applications".

Let the interviewer do the talking. Listen, nod (when the interviewer is catching his/her breath), and ask pertinent questions along the way. Behave the way you should because YOU ARE INTERESTED IN THE JOB and want to know more about it.

Of course, being "young", the interviewer may ask questions like "Why are you in this line?". This is a major killer question to many of my peers because they don't exactly know what they want to do in life. I just answered that I simply wanted to be a consultant - I get a degree in the finance field, combine with my experience in IT (some electronic engineering) and logistics, I increase my chances of being consulted upon because I can solve problems in 3 sectors in one go, instead of being a "specialised" consultant who is extremely good only in one thing. Besides, all these three sectors are hugely connected in most industries via money flow, a problem in one will very likely be a cause or effect in another.

The toughest question I was asked is "If a client is looking for an improvement in their IT infrastructure in business BT so they could better deal their products, how would you go about doing it?" I was wholly stuck at the question because I didn't know what business BT is, so I simply told them :

"It would depend on what product or service the client is pushing. With regards to this, I would start by categorising the client's customer database, and the most common use of the products/services provided so I know about the client's target market. For example, the client may have a huge mass of a certain customer who requested a certain product/service, so it should be considered the main cashline. Then, based on the product's utility, depending on the product's maintenance level, upgrade frequency, we would then source for the operating system and OS. More often than not, there are free software out there like Apache Openoffice and FreeBSD which can significantly reduce the operating costs of a business, which is great for SMEs which does not have alot of employees to train to use the system."

I can see that she knows that I have no idea what she is saying and was figuring out stuff on the fly, but I think she appreciated the fact that I tried to answer the questions based on my general knowledge and understanding (I don't have much raw intelligence being a dyslexic, so I make up for reading and learning all sorts of stuff).

Basically, I would sum up these :

#1 - Give everything a shot. However, DO IT CAREFULLY.
#2 - Speak slowly if you are thinking of what to say. You would probably breathe much easier and be less agitated since you are not gasping for air to feed your words.
#3 - Most importantly, LISTEN. Every. Single. Word. It may be boring if the interviewer keeps droning on and on, but if you listen, you may find alot more questions to ask to boost your interest.
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When three puppygirls named after pastries are on top of each other, it is called Eclair a'la menthe et Biscotti aux fraises avec beaucoup de Ricotta sur le dessus.
Most of all, you have to be disciplined and you have to save, even if you hate our current financial system. Because if you don't save, then you're guaranteed to end up with nothing.
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Old 2013-02-26, 07:56   Link #70
Dextro
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
The toughest question I was asked is "If a client is looking for an improvement in their IT infrastructure in business BT so they could better deal their products, how would you go about doing it?" I was wholly stuck at the question because I didn't know what business BT is, so I simply told them :

"It would depend on what product or service the client is pushing. With regards to this, I would start by categorising the client's customer database, and the most common use of the products/services provided so I know about the client's target market. For example, the client may have a huge mass of a certain customer who requested a certain product/service, so it should be considered the main cashline. Then, based on the product's utility, depending on the product's maintenance level, upgrade frequency, we would then source for the operating system and OS. More often than not, there are free software out there like Apache Openoffice and FreeBSD which can significantly reduce the operating costs of a business, which is great for SMEs which does not have alot of employees to train to use the system."

I can see that she knows that I have no idea what she is saying and was figuring out stuff on the fly, but I think she appreciated the fact that I tried to answer the questions based on my general knowledge and understanding (I don't have much raw intelligence being a dyslexic, so I make up for reading and learning all sorts of stuff).
That's a bet you did there since what answer the interviewer is looking for depends quite a bit on the type of person he is, who he's looking for and the type of company they work in. Most big HR departments and firms tend to look for skills first and adaptability second. They don't really care if you're a quick or slow learner, they just need you to do a very specific job. Smaller companies on the other hand tend to favor more those who would be honest and admit to "failing to recall" that particular term. They value more adaptability than a highly specialized worker since they can't afford to hire too many people.

When faced with those kinds of questions I usually tend to try and clarify the meaning of the acronym. It helps however that 'round here people tend to vary between English and Portuguese quite a lot and you can usually claim to be unfamiliar with the term on one of the languages. It's a bit of a gamble yes but when trying to sell yourself to a potential employer you want to hold on to any advantage you can and revealing weaknesses is something to avoid.
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Old 2013-02-26, 17:49   Link #71
Ledgem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
P.S I treated the interview like a dating sim - realised that if the interviewer smiled, means he/she is interested in getting you in. This means that I have to smile when I am answering questions in order to get something back.
I chuckled. I don't necessarily agree that friendly gestures on the part of the interviewer mean that they like you, since it's just a polite thing to do and may be nothing more than a formality (unless things are very different in Singapore). Regardless, I hope you get the job. Although I dare say it would be even nicer if you also ended up with a "dating sim" ending
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Old 2013-02-26, 18:27   Link #72
DonQuigleone
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Join Date: Dec 2007
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Friendliness from an interviewer can sometimes be a skilled act. By being friendly with you, they can get you off guard, and revealing things you may not have otherwise.

I've had interviews where I felt like I had a good vibe going with the interviewer, but in the end I got rejected.

Though friendliness is a lot better then unfriendliness.
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Old 2013-02-26, 22:02   Link #73
ChainLegacy
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Join Date: Feb 2004
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Age: 24
Interviews are a combination of controlled boasting, sucking up, and bullshitting, from my vantage point, anyways. Quite an uncomfortable experience. I've always been fairly adept at them, but they're quite unenjoyable, regardless. Luckily for me, my career choices are mostly entrepreneurial and independent in nature, so barring some massive failing of my business ventures in the future, I'm hopefully done with job interviews. On the other hand, I still need to negotiate bank loans and mortgages for some projects, which is quite similar to an interview... though less scrutinizing on your personal traits, and more focused on hard numbers.

I wish luck upon those going through the grinder of the interview process, it's never pretty, but go in there with confidence and you can hopefully come out intact.

I've actually had to conduct some interviews myself, so I've seen the other side of the coin as well. I've tried not to be as much of a condescending ass as some of your corporate interviewers. It does take some skill to sift through the pro-bullshitters and the people who are actually qualified. Also, it never ceases to amaze me when I go through resumes and people have glaring spelling/grammatical errors... while it's shallow to judge someone based on such a mistake, there's no denying that an oversight on one's resume doesn't speak strongly about a person's attention to detail...

Last edited by ChainLegacy; 2013-02-26 at 22:12.
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Old 2013-02-26, 22:09   Link #74
DonQuigleone
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Dublin, Ireland
Age: 25
I just wish the whole process was quicker.

At the moment, it's on average about a month or so between applying and getting an interview (recently I had an interview where it was 9 months), after that it might be a 2 or 3 weeks until I get told I'm through to the second round, and then it's another week or two before I sit the second round, and then it's another few weeks before I'm told if I get the job or not!

I'd love it if I could just apply to a job, and have the whole process over within a week.

With these kind of schedules, what am I supposed to do with my life?
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Old 2013-02-26, 22:11   Link #75
Azuma Denton
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@SaintessHearts
So you now are aiming for a consultant. An IT / Business Consultant?

Quote:
The toughest question I was asked is "If a client is looking for an improvement in their IT infrastructure in business BT so they could better deal their products, how would you go about doing it?" I was wholly stuck at the question because I didn't know what business BT is, so I simply told them :

"It would depend on what product or service the client is pushing. With regards to this, I would start by categorising the client's customer database, and the most common use of the products/services provided so I know about the client's target market. For example, the client may have a huge mass of a certain customer who requested a certain product/service, so it should be considered the main cashline. Then, based on the product's utility, depending on the product's maintenance level, upgrade frequency, we would then source for the operating system and OS. More often than not, there are free software out there like Apache Openoffice and FreeBSD which can significantly reduce the operating costs of a business, which is great for SMEs which does not have alot of employees to train to use the system."
On this based on my experience as someone who do the question. I must say that your answer is not up to her expectation but you certainly did score some point.
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Old 2013-02-27, 00:43   Link #76
barcode120x
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Join Date: Apr 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonQuigleone View Post
Friendliness from an interviewer can sometimes be a skilled act. By being friendly with you, they can get you off guard, and revealing things you may not have otherwise.

I've had interviews where I felt like I had a good vibe going with the interviewer, but in the end I got rejected.

Though friendliness is a lot better then unfriendliness.
200% true. When I started looking for some simple/low end jobs when I first started college, I went to about 3 interviews with the feeling of a good vibe. All the interviewers were VERY interested in my major (nursing; mind you these were not medically related jobs but for some reason they wanted to know a lot about it and how I was doing). All 3 were very engaged with me where I was very comfortable with them. I don't recall giving out any "bad" information about myself and they were very interested in my work schedule (I could basically work any time they wanted me too) and even asked for my class schedule.

I never got a 2nd call from any of them. Anyways, that was awhile back, but yeah, it's definitely better to have a "friendly" interviewer regardless if it's an act or not.
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Old 2013-02-27, 06:09   Link #77
SaintessHeart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Azuma Denton View Post
@SaintessHearts
So you now are aiming for a consultant. An IT / Business Consultant?
Just the word "consultant". I would prefer to be asked for advice on anything - it is kind of fun to be able to answer any single question everyone throws at you while figuring out the ones you don't know on the fly.

So one day I may have enough caliber to advice well-meaning petitioners and politicians to overturn the minimum age limit on marriage and repeal all constraints on the research of GM catgirls and lolification medicine.

Quote:
On this based on my experience as someone who do the question. I must say that your answer is not up to her expectation but you certainly did score some point.
I know. I thought of trying to smoke my way out, but then I thought again, why not give it a shot and have fun while doing so?

Then again, what kind of answer would you give? I am a tech guy, but I am not good with terminology.
__________________

When three puppygirls named after pastries are on top of each other, it is called Eclair a'la menthe et Biscotti aux fraises avec beaucoup de Ricotta sur le dessus.
Most of all, you have to be disciplined and you have to save, even if you hate our current financial system. Because if you don't save, then you're guaranteed to end up with nothing.
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Old 2013-02-27, 21:38   Link #78
Azuma Denton
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
Just the word "consultant". I would prefer to be asked for advice on anything - it is kind of fun to be able to answer any single question everyone throws at you while figuring out the ones you don't know on the fly.

So one day I may have enough caliber to advice well-meaning petitioners and politicians to overturn the minimum age limit on marriage and repeal all constraints on the research of GM catgirls and lolification medicine.



I know. I thought of trying to smoke my way out, but then I thought again, why not give it a shot and have fun while doing so?

Then again, what kind of answer would you give? I am a tech guy, but I am not good with terminology.
Well, i would focus my answer on the effectiveness of IT infrastructure. I remember watching an Oracle webcast that saying most of current company (especially in growing nation) spends 2/3 of their time compiling reports instead of analyzing them. So i would suggest them to implement something to help increasing their effectiveness (ERP/ BI / EPM /CRM based on the condition on the field). If you have more time to analyze your reports instead of compiling, then the corporate will make better decision.
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Old 2013-05-20, 18:00   Link #79
guest
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Help! On, urrr, how to get a job in Boston (biotech)?

I remember there are a few people here who live in Boston, USA, and are in the manager levels of their company. So I figure I will give it a try. I used to work at an academic institute (biotech/medical) doing experiment at a laboratory (research tech/assistant). But my boss didn't have fund to support the lab anymore so I was one of the people who got laid-off. After that, I have been applying for job opportunity everywhere in Boston but no luck. It has been two year. Can someone here who understand biotechnology tell me how to get a job, or tell me where to get help? I really don't know what to do. I need help, desperately. Any help or suggestions about job hunting will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 2013-05-20, 21:06   Link #80
ArchmageXin
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Check with my former firm, Randstad. They have an division specialize in BioTech placement. Beyond that, good luck. At least you are in one of the biggest BioTech Zone in the U.S
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