Going Head on With Tough Interview Questions To Get the Job You Deserve
According to the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) close to seven million Filipinos have lost their jobs because of the COVID- 19 pandemic. The plague has overturned global policies on health, politics, and economics. It has claimed hundreds of thousands of lives, leaving big cities in Latin America and the Philippines under quarantine for months.
Companies propped up by a digital infrastructure were initially shaken only to recoup and take advantage of the massive migration of economic life online.
If you’re a stay-at-home professional who’s eyeing a niche in the online world, here is a hypothetical online job interview that you can learn from.
What is your biggest weakness that’s really a weakness, and not a secret strength?
I am easily affected by my colleagues emotions. I tend to get clingy to coworkers in a short time, and soon enough I begin to treat them like family.
The trouble with being close to office colleagues is that you share their issues—work and family—as well. Especially if you belong in the same team/department. Whatever they get themselves into, you find yourself getting pulled in: even while the matter is none of your business, it affects your work and relationship with others who are not part of your office clique.
Why is this a secret strength? It’s because sympathizing means you are a good listener and that you are able to read through people’s words and feelings. This allows you to be able to sift through certain issues and eventually promote good will and understanding among group members. When you have a member of a team that understands everyone’s situation, it’s rather fairly easy to set group goals.
This is what I bring into the company.
You have changed careers before. Why should I let you experiment with my company?
When you’re young changing careers is not surprising. Changing a job every now and then doesn’t equate with guilt in the sense that everyone wants to have a good paying job and a meaningful career. Finding a job that suits you is really a work in progress, thus an experiment. It takes some time before one finally arrives at a destination. Others may take their whole life looking for one.
So even while you view this as an experiment, I want to make sure that while I’m working for you, I’ll do the best that I can and learn the tricks of the trade, so that my stay will not disadvantage the company’s affairs. In the event you find that I’ve been a liability, by all means you can let me go any time.
If you knew that things at your company were rocky, why didn’t you get out of the company sooner?
I wish I knew everything. I decided to leave the company not because I wanted to get myself out of trouble. Whether the company was in a bad way or doing well, I wouldn’t have left any way. It left because I felt that it was time I got on with something that I authentically wanted to do—for myself fulfillment.
It’s a different thing when you’re only looking at a position as a job; it’s another when you’re treating the position as work. In my book, work is something that I do, whether I get paid or not. It’s a task that comes as second nature to me, something to which I can apply a good deal of skill and attention. This is how I see myself moving in to your company. I work under this principle.
From your resume, it looks like you were fired twice. How did that make you feel?
I don’t deny that I’ve had my shortcomings and failures. And I wouldn’t bother explaining why I was fired twice in the past. I was young and reckless, you might say. But it was a time of so much promises and risks, so I’d tally it all up on learning experience.
Losing a job saddened me, of course. I began to question my self and my capabilities. There was even a time I felt sorry for myself that it got really close to guilt. The lull gave me enough time to self- evaluate and weight in on my career plans: whether I continue working for someone or to have my own business/company. The temporary feeling of rejection fueled my drive to strive even more to build up on my strengths and skills. Instead of getting stuck in a rot, that experience propelled me to beat my old self and become a totally new person who’s full of possibilities.
I see from your resume that you worked at your previous company for four years, and that’s terrific.
But I also noticed that you weren’t promoted during that time. Why not?
I was so engrossed with the work I was doing that I wasn’t thinking whether I got promoted or not. When you treat your work as part of your life, your second skin that is, you can almost never tell whether you’re at the office or at your living room. Things just get simultaneous. That’s what happened. If you look closely at my employment history, the four years I spent at my previous company didn’t only mean a stretch of years: it was marked by ups and downs, mostly work highlights that shine a light on what I successfully did.
The promotion part wasn’t on my agenda, as was plainly obvious. But on not a few occasions my supervisor and manager came up to me and patted me on the back for a job well done. That gesture was more than a promotion. If getting a promotion means getting words of assurance and praise from your boss, then a that moment I knew I just got one!
Pursuing the same argument, other than a black and white copy of my excellent performance and the cash reward (if any), there is no substitute for your manager’s well-placed compliment.
You majored in philosophy. How did that prepare you for this career?
While I believe that an undergraduate degree relevant to the job at hand is a competitive edge, it doesn’t work that way all the time. Many work-related skills may be learned over time. In fact, new hires are trained regardless whether they studied the job or not or have done something similar in the past. Each company has its own calibrated work essentials.
But my edge as a philosophy major is that I’m able to think rationally and critically when faced with daunting tasks. I don’t come to judgment easily and settle for an easy way out when I know that the creases have not been neatly ironed out. My undergraduate degree has trained me to not only analyze complex mental situations but as well as generate rational observations based on science. It’s easy to accuse philosopher majors of being subjective. On the contrary: we take a clinical approach to many of life’s issues such as gaining employment, working with a team, marketing, management, press relations ,etc.
Finally, what is your dream job?
I go about life with wide open eyes, so I don’t believe in a dream job. A financially rewarding job, yes, but not an ideal job that sums up my deepest desires and wishes. After all it’s only a job. A man once said your job doesn’t define you. I believe in this completely. I think what you do for others and how you make them feel their worth at a time they’ve lost it should be the basis of your self-worth. My wish really is doing and creating something using my skills, and to reproduce it to be able to help those who are helpless. It does sound like a “dream job” in the sense that I reeks of a grand vision, but in the bigger scheme of things, we are all connected to each other one way or the other.