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How not to stuff up your job interview

Nigel Morris-Cotterill

On 8th November, 2018, I had the opportunity to present to students at Tunku Abdul Rahman University College my guide to success in job interviews. Here it is.

Remember: despite the current vogue for misuse of language, you do not interview for a job. You are a candidate and when you are sitting in the room you are the interviewee. The person doing the interview is the interviewer and it is that person that interviews.

Having said that, acceptance is a two way street. You might not like the person who interviews you, or you might not like what you see when you walk around the office or the factory, you might decide that giving you a brightly coloured cubicle and an inclusive environment where you can play table tennis and have free-flow cappuccino is, really, like a big casino where there are no clocks and no incentive to go home.

Workplaces are not families: families are the people you go to to get away from work. And sometimes it's the other way around.

So, while the working environment is important, what is more important is making sure that the company respects what has become known as a work-life balance. Does the company expect to have your mobile phone number? Does it expect you to belong to workplace WhatsApp groups? If it arranges so-called Off-Sites, for example a weekend's team building course, whose time is spent? i.e. if you attend company functions out of office hours, is that counted as work hours and therefore you get time-off in lieu?

These are examples of questions you should know the answer to before you open the door to the interview room because they have a direct impact on your non-work life.

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