What Makes You Happy?

Lets take a moment to reflect on a previous post. What makes you happy? Sometimes it is the simplest questions that catch us the most off guard. I know several hiring managers who ask a version of the question: What makes you happy in your chosen job or career? If you’re not asking this question of candidates, you might want to start. And if you’re not prepared to answer this question, you may want to give it some thought. Several years ago Forbes identified the only three true job … [Read more...]

5 Things About…Dressing for Success

With summer in full effect, lets revisit a few tips on dressing for success. Appearance can make or break an interview. This may seem petty, but the bottom line is that an employer needs to have confidence that you’ll represent them well while on the job. 1. Dress Professionally…even if it’s Friday Unless told otherwise, for communications and marketing positions, wear a suit. For men, this means the obvious: jacket and tie. For women, slacks and suit jacket, or a conservative dress with … [Read more...]

Do You Know Your Numbers?

For this week on #takemebacktuesday, we refocus on how numbers impact the interview process. In an interview setting, conversation can tend to live in the land of really good ideas and not enough in the world of nitty gritty numbers. It’s easy for this to happen given that so much of the conversation is hypothetical; what you might do for this company, what you think could happen in this role, etc. “It’s important for PR candidates – like all other job candidates – to understand that … [Read more...]

Know Your Skills

For this week's #takemebacktuesday post, lets review the best practices for showcasing your skills. There is a reason they say, “the proof is in the pudding,” not “the proof is in the pudding’s degree,” or “the proof is in the pudding’s references.” Though these things are factors, at the end of the day hiring decisions come down to your abilities. Have you convinced the hiring manager that you possess the hard and soft skills to carry out the function of the role? How can you sell and … [Read more...]

Lights, Camera, Interview

For this week's #takemebacktuesday post, I reflect on previous back-to-back Skype interviews with candidates. Although I determined both candidates were qualified for the position I was recruiting for, one Skype session was much more successful than the other. It got me thinking about what contributed to the better interview since the candidates were similar. Location Like real estate, a Skype interview is all about location, location, location. When I Skype, I try to make sure that the … [Read more...]

Crafting a Compelling Job Description

For the final #takemebacktuesday post, we revisit how a job description can play a significant role in the hiring process; from the moment it is created, to its approval within an organization, to being posted, to sharing with candidates, to when it’s used as an interview tool. It will be seen by many, many people and really becomes part of your organization’s reputation. We see a lot of job descriptions in our office and this week I asked our team to share their opinions on what makes a good … [Read more...]

References, Part One: 5 Tips on Who to Ask and How

We continue #takemebacktuesday this week by reflecting on our previous References series. Even though reference checking typically comes in the final stage of an interview process, it is still a crucial and significant step. Claudio Fernandez-Araoz, a senior advisor at global executive firm Egon Zehnder and career advice author, told Harvard Business Review “Given the option of either interviewing a candidate without checking references or checking references without interviewing, I would … [Read more...]

The Ten Minute Interview (Part Two)

#takemebacktuesday Last week, we revisited how to get the most out of an interview where I posted about helpful interview skills after my stint as a coach at New York Women in Communication’s Night of the Coaches event. Since many of the attendees were just out of college, a lot of the questions centered around informational interviews, and how to get the most out of them. Often informational interviews are granted when a personal connection is made on behalf of the candidate. That … [Read more...]

The Ten-Minute Interview (Part One)

Lets revisit how to get the most out of an interview. #takemebacktuesday Many blog posts ago we created an interview strategy series. Here are two pesky interviews questions you might not be prepared for. Here are the first two: Tell me a success story Advice: Have at least three at the ready. Consider the audience, choose the most relevant and tell a great story that describes a challenge and how you met it. During each of the roundtable sessions it became clear that women still … [Read more...]

What Not to Ask in the Interview Room

There always comes a moment in the interview when the people across the table ask the candidate what questions they have. This can be a stressful moment for candidates who may have not have given it thought prior to the interview. While we’ve written about great questions candidates can ask in this scenario, this week’s blog post is about highlighting a few questions to avoid asking so as not to accidentally undo the great work you did in the rest of the interview. Don’t look … [Read more...]