This anonymous interview is with a public librarian who has been a hiring manager at a library with 10-50 staff members.
What are the top three things you look for in a candidate?
Do you have any instant dealbreakers, either in the application packet or the interview process?
They did not send a cover letter in the application
They did not smile in the interview.
What are you tired of seeing on resumes/in cover letters?
Claims about skills without substance to back them up
How many pages should a cover letter be?
√ Two is ok, but no more
How many pages should a resume/CV be?
√ As many as it takes, I want to look at every accomplishment
Do you have a preferred format for application documents?
Should a resume/CV have an Objective statement?
√ I don’t care
If applications are emailed, how should the cover letter be submitted?
√ As an attachment only
What’s the best way to win you over in an interview?
Demonstrate skills through descriptions of actual behaviours – remember the key to a good behavioural interview:
Situation – describe what you were dealing with
Action – say what you did about it
Response – tell us how that worked for you
What are some of the most common mistakes people make in an interview?
They don’t practice and they don’t plan for answering behavioural questions.
They do not have any questions to ask.
How has hiring changed at your organization since you’ve been in on the process?
Much more focus on behavioural questions – asking clients to demonstrate their attitudes and approaches to work by describing specific situations. More interested in attitude and fit with the organization than specific experience.
Anything else you’d like to let job-seekers know?
Research behavioural inteviews and the organization that is interviewing you.