Posts Tagged ‘interview questions’

Career Advice – 5 Questions to Ask Before You Leave an Interview

Tuesday, March 12th, 2019

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Interview Questions

So you’ve made it through the gruelling questions about your strengths, weaknesses and everything in between during your interview. You may have sweated through your entire suit and feel like you’ve lost all your breath from your chatter, but the end is near! Before you’re able to go out and breathe a sigh of relief, your interviewer will most likely ask you if you have any questions for him/her. This is an important aspect of every interview that is not to be ignored! Potential employers want to see that you have a genuine interest in learning more about the job and organization, before you even start your first day. Responding to this with a simple “no, not at the moment” could come across as lazy or disinterested. If you have some questions already in your mind, that’s great, but also feel free to ask anything that still may be unclear from the job posting or interview session.

Here are five key questions to consider asking your interviewer before you race out the door!

1. What is a typical day like on the job?

You already should know the key responsibilities and duties from what you’ve read from the posting or have been told, but this may allow you to get a more in depth description of your role. It will help you to envision yourself on the job and mentally prepare yourself for your first day if you are the successful candidate!

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2. How is feedback given here?

Whether it may be monthly performance reports or simple informal chats with your manager, it’s important to know how you’ll find out whether you’re doing a good job or not.

 

3. What is the workplace culture like?

You may be spending forty or more hours of your week with these new coworkers, so it’s good to know how people interact with each other and what values are important to them. It’s also good to add on here whether they do activities outside of work, like team building trips or retreats. It’ll be nice to hear if the interviewer says everyone who already works there together gets along and if they have values that match up with yours!

 

4. What do you like about working here?

This can be a great determiner of whether you yourself will like working at the organization or not. If they respond with something like “it’s easy money” or something uninspiring, then chances are they don’t actually like working there! If they give an in depth response, explaining it’s a great environment and fulfilling work, then it’s more likely they genuinely enjoy their work.

 

5. What are the key challenges to your organization right now?

This way you can see if the interviewer can actually evaluate their organization’s current position and they now what the company needs to work on. If they tell you everything is just peachy keen, then they are lying! Or they really have no clue what the company’s goals are and what they need to overcome to accomplish that. If they explain to you some of these challenges, then you can see how you would be able to help conquer these roadblocks using your skills and traits.

Asking some or all of these question will help you get a better sense of what it will be like to potentially work in the organization, and will also help you feel so much more prepared for your first day if you do indeed get the call back for the job. Don’t be afraid to take notes when they answer these questions and pay attention! You’ll be able to leave your interview in a much better mood knowing you impressed your potential employer with these key questions.

Inspiration Picture: Courtesy of https://sechselement.com.

By: Sarah Brooks, Toronto

 

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Fashion Jobs – Interview Question: What are your Weaknesses?

Tuesday, February 12th, 2019

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Interview Tips - Christie Lohr Style Nine to Five

No job interview is complete without the dreaded, “what’s your greatest weakness” question, or some variation of it. Employers love to ask candidates about their professional weaknesses, and what a candidate says in response can reveal a lot about them. I can’t even begin to count how many times I’ve received the generic, “I pay too much attention to detail,” another variation of turning an inherent strength into a weakness, or worse “I don’t have any”. Everyone has weaknesses in certain areas; it’s human nature. Trying to pass yourself off as a perfectionist during your interview may not actually work in your favour the way you would expect it to. Be real and be authentic. Always show up to an interview having fully prepared to answer that dreaded question. As an employer, I want to know what you’ve done to overcome a weakness in the past, specifically something that’s related to the workplace and not your personal life. It’s important to maintain professionalism, so choose a weakness that would be of interest to your interviewer.

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For example, my personal weakness is that I am disorganized. Being so busy, I want to get everything done ahead of schedule and in the rush to do so, I may just skip a beat along the way. With so much going on, I’m prone to being somewhat scatter-brained and have even missed a few important, scheduled calls in the past. In order to improve and overcome this weakness, I committed to writing everything down in front of me. I knew I had to start doing so as using my phone calendar wasn’t effective for me. Along with writing and documenting everything, I also started creating spreadsheets on Google Docs. The combination of the two has been really effective in helping me get more organized. Although my organization is still something that I’m working on, I can safely say that it’s no longer a hindrance to my ability to be productive while not missing the little details.

 

Whether you share my weakness of disorganization, or have one that’s unique to you, I encourage you to work at improving your negatives so that you can turn it into a great answer to the next “what’s your biggest weakness” interview question.”

 

– Christie Lohr @christie_lohr

 

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Fashion Jobs – 5 Questions to Ask at an Interview to Land the Job

Friday, December 14th, 2018

Find career advice, job listings, careers, fashion jobs, social media internships, retail jobs, fashion design jobs, buying jobs, fashion stylist jobs and style careers on Style Nine to Five!

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We’ve all been there before: You’re at an interview and you know you’re going to be asked: “do you have any questions for me?” The table’s turn and your role switches from being the interviewee to the interviewer.  This moment can work to your benefit, instead of being dreaded. Use these five questions to help you grasp a better insight of your budding future job and make a statement that can turn it into reality.

 

1. Describe the day-to-day tasks that are included in the role?
I’m sure you’ve read over the job posting, rehearsed the qualifications and compared them to the shining star that you are. However, this is a chance for them to give you the inside scoop on the role, and fill you in on anything that wasn’t listed on the application. It’s also an opportunity to discover the layout of the office, see who you would be reporting to or working side by side. It’s an easier way for you to visualize your future daily routine and if it’s the right fit.

 

2. What type of qualities would you like to see in someone excelling in the position?
You’re obviously awesome, not to mention who wouldn’t want you on their team? This is your chance to boost your confidence and compare yourself to the role. You might walk into the interview knowing “you got this” or vice versa and shocked you were selected for a meet and greet. All skills aside, at every workplace it comes down to the personality. This is an opportunity to make your personality shine and relate their expectations to yourself. For instance, bring up a moment where you’ve problem solved or multi-tasked at work.

 

3. Describe the company culture?
A great way to picture yourself in a place is to have them explain to you what makes it so great! Your important and a solid investment to the company. Dig in and find the information you need to see if your new workplace fits as your second home. Because we all know it: regardless of where you work, it’s going to become your secondary residence. Discover their values, what makes them unique and overall aura of staff (aka your new co-workers).

 

4. What do you love most about working for the company and your position?
You’ll most likely be interviewed by your potential superior or the founder of the company. Regardless it’ll be someone who has been with the company for years and can share why they’re passionate about the purpose of their role. You can grab a glimpse of the interviewer’s background and how they made it to where they are now. This can be very motivational, to discover someone else’s success and career path.

 

5. What is the potential career growth for someone in this role?
We all think about our future with a workplace and if we can see long-term happiness. Your skills are important and your hard work should most definitely be recognized. Now is the time to see how you could grow within the company, and how to receive a greater role that can prosper your career.

 

Inspirational Image
Image Courtesy of Vogue Paris

 

By Andrea Andino, Vancouver @andreaaandino

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Fashion Jobs – Interviewing the Interviewer: Questions To Get The Job

Wednesday, April 25th, 2018

Style Nine to Five - Fashion Jobs in CanadaSNTF_Interviewing the Interviewer_Internal Growth

Whether you’re a seasoned professional or new to the job force, everyone can admin that interviews can be intimidating, especially when it comes to interviewing for your dream job. Recruiters, career advisors and hiring managers alike will tell you the best way to beat interview nerves is to come prepared. This means the basics, such as reviewing the job description and overall role, learning about the company’s purpose and history. And thanks to LinkedIn, you can even do a bit of digging on the hiring manager before your interview.  You also want to be prepared for the questions themselves; some might ask straightforward questions on your experience and skill sets, whereas others might ask situational behavior questions to get a better sense of who you are.

 

Other great tips to feel ready for your interview is arriving early, dressing for the job you want and being true to who you are. But what about the interview closing where the dreaded question comes: “So, do you have any questions for me?”. Surprisingly enough, even with all the interview advice available online, people still mess this one up by asking about scheduling, pay, and vacations. These are all valid questions that you can definitively still ask, but they do come off as being superficial and most employers see this as you only caring about a job, versus a career. If you’re really looking to stand out and make a good impression with your questions, here are some great tips on asking questions to the interviewer to land the job!

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Ask About The Culture
Learning about the company from its website or news releases are great, but that might not always be a good indication if the corporate culture might be for you. As much as it’s extremely important for the job to be the right fit, so is the culture of the office or work environment. Are you someone who likes to keep to themselves whereas the team is super close-knit? Then maybe that culture isn’t necessarily for you. You can learn about culture in a variety of ways from straight up asking “so, what is the culture like here?” or “how is the overall team dynamic in the office?”. Another great question surrounding culture is asking about any charitable or community-driven initiatives that the company participates in and how the company contributes. Whichever way you choose to ask, learning about the corporate vibes is also a great way to gain insights on dress code, how you’ll get along with your peers and how the environment can help your overall productivity.

 

Learn About Internal Opportunities
Now that you’ve gotten a sense if the company’s culture is right for you, it’s time to learn about the internal growth opportunities that may be available to you in the future. The key here is to not sound like you’re eager to jump around, but rather that you’re a loyal and long-term investment for the company and willing to grow within. This surprisingly is a huge bonus to employers keeping in mind the costs involved in the hiring process, between recruiting, hours spent training and getting you up to speed. Companies that truly have a fostering culture will be ecstatic to bring on a candidate who sees themselves with the organization long-term. A few ways you can ask about this is inquiring about the interviewer’s history within the organization, asking about any development programs or initiations, or you can be straightforward and ask about employees who have grown within the company. Remember, avoid coming on too strong and seeming like you’re looking for bigger and better opportunities, and rather focus on your desire to learn and grow your skills within the company.

SNTF_Interviewing the Interviewer_Management Style

Get To Know The Hiring Manager’s Style
A really big hit or miss for a new job is how you flow with your hiring manager. This is especially important if your role involves working directly with your manager, for example, an executive assistant. This information is a bit tricky to get without straight out asking “are you mean” or “are your expectations too high” which is obviously a bit too forward to ask. With that being said you can ask harmless questions about their management style, overall expectations, working style and general preferences. Given that this should be one of your last questions if the hiring manager is the one interviewing you this should give you good perspective in conjunction with your overall meeting with them.

 

By M.J. Elle, Toronto, @TheMJElle

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Fashion Jobs – 5 Questions to Ask at an Interview to Land the Job

Monday, November 27th, 2017

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We’ve all been there before, you’re at an interview and you know you’re going to be asked: “do you have any questions for me?” The table’s turn and you’re asked to be the interviewer to the employer. This moment can work to your benefit, instead of being dreaded. Use these five questions to help you grasp a better insight of your budding future job and make a statement that can turn it into reality.

 

1. Describe the day-to-day tasks that are included in the role?
I’m sure you’ve read over the job posting, rehearsed the qualifications and compared them to the shining star that you are. However, this is a chance for them to give you the inside scoop on the role, and fill you in on anything that wasn’t listed on the application. It’s also an opportunity to discover the layout of the office, see who you would be reporting to or working side by side. It’s an easier way for you to visualize your future daily routine and if it’s the right fit.  

 

2. What type of qualities would you like to see in someone excelling in the position?
You’re obviously awesome, not to mention who wouldn’t want you on their team? This is your chance to boost your confidence and compare yourself to the role. You might walk into the interview knowing “you got this” or vice versa and shocked you were selected for a meet and greet. All skills aside, at every workplace it comes down to the personality. This is an opportunity to make your personality shine and relate their expectations to yourself. For instance, bring up a moment where you’ve problem solved or multi-tasks at work.

 

3. Describe the company culture?
A great way to picture yourself in a place is to have them explain to you what makes it so great! Your important and a solid investment into the company. Dig in and find the information you need to see if your new workplace fits as your second home. Because we all know it: regardless of where you work, it’s going to become your secondary residence. Discover their values, what makes them unique and overall aura of staff (aka your new co-workers).

 

4. What do you love most about working for the company and your position?
You’ll most likely be interviewed by your potential superior or the founder of the company. Regardless it’ll be someone who has been with the company for years and can share why they’re passionate about the purpose of their role. You can grab a glimpse of the interviewer’s background and how they made it to where they are now. This can be very motivational, to discover someone else’s success and career path.

 

5. What is the potential career growth for someone in this role?
We all think about our future with a workplace and if we can see long-term happiness. Your skills are important and your hard work should most definitely be recognized. Now is the time to see how you could grow within the company, and how to receive a greater role that can prosper your career.

 

Inspirational Image
Image Courtesy of Laia Magazine

 

By Andrea Andino, Vancouver @andreaaandino

Fashion Jobs – 5 Ways to Get a Fashion Job

Monday, January 4th, 2016

Style Nine to Five - Fashion Jobs Canada

 

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Take these 5 actions and you will most likely get that fashion job.

 

1. Have a professional and attractive social presence; most importantly Instagram and LinkedIn. The first thing I do when a candidate applies at Style Nine to Five is look them up on Instagram (remove those party pics) and LinkedIn (is this up-to-date?). Your profile photos on each of these accounts should be different. For example, your LinkedIn profile will be more professional, while Instagram might show a bit more of your fashion sense and personality.

 

2. The most successful job applicants do research. Even for someone who doesn’t have a lot of experience or is looking for an entry-level position, a well-written and thoughtfully composed cover letter can be impressive enough. No cover letter? Slim chance of getting an interview.

 

3. Follow-up. Send thank you notes or emails immediately following your interview to stay fresh in employer’s minds.

 

4. Explain what you can do for the employer and not the other way around. This shows you’re ambitious, positive, passionate and want to help the company grow and reach their goals, and believe that the only way to do that is if you’re hired.

 

5. Ask questions in interviews to demonstrate your knowledge and enthusiasm.

 

Here are a few examples of interview questions to ask your interviewer:

• What do you love most about your job and/or working for this company?

• What are some of the challenges someone in my position would face? If it’s something you can offer a solution to, your chances of getting hired just went through the roof.

 

Image: Anna Wintour’s Instagram.

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Fashion Jobs – Career Advice From Christie Lohr: How to Answer the Unanswerable During Interviews

Friday, August 22nd, 2014

 

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No matter how much we prepare ahead of time for an interview, there’s bound to be one or two questions thrown our way that are just plain hard to answer. Every interviewer wants to know why you’re leaving your current position or why there was a gap on your resume since your last point of employment, but consequently, those are also the most difficult questions to answer. How do you communicate a bad experience in a previous position without turning recruiters off? What if you decided to take a year off of work? Since you’ll most likely be making your first impression during the interview, it’s important to understand how a hiring manager may perceive what you say. Having made many hiring decisions in the past, Christie certainly has her fair share of advice to share about the dos and don’ts of answering the unanswerable.

 

Christie: “I know that job seekers want to be honest with their interviewers, but it’s important to view yourself through the eyes of a hiring manager first. Although you may have had a bad experience in a past position, I always tell candidates to never play the role of the victim, even if your past management was at fault. No interviewer wants to hear a candidate bad-mouthing their previous company in any way because we will immediately wonder what you may say about OUR company if we were to hire you. Internal company discord should be kept separate from the interview discussion.  If asked the question of why you are leaving your current company, try and keep the topic of the conversation on the new company. Perhaps your old job didn’t offer you enough growth opportunities which you believe the new position would? Do you feel like the culture of the new company is a better fit for your personality and style? These are all great ways to keep the focus of the interview on why you want to work for the company you are interviewing for while still answering the original question of why you are leaving your previous role. Even if the situation was bad, never let the “bad” and “negatives” creep into your interview. Stay focused and also positive!

 

Similarly, a gap between the present and your previous term of employment could raise red flags for the interviewer. We want to confirm that you weren’t fired or let go from your previous position. The interviewer is probably wondering why you didn’t wait to find a new job first before resigning from your previous post. A good way to approach this question is to attribute the period of absence from employment to self-improvement of any sort. Even if you were just taking a break to switch gears, make sure that you don’t come off as lazy in any way. Instead, frame the time off as a means to work on yourself so that you could become better for it. It’s important to reassure the interviewer that you are most definitely ready to re-enter the work force with all of the newfound takeaways from your period of absence. Remember, everyone wants a go-getter! And while a lot of what you say comes down to the delivery itself, your words do have an impact on how the interviewer will perceive you. If you are unsure, then air on the side of caution when answering tough questions, while placing a larger emphasis on what you can bring to the new role. ”

Photo: Laura McIntosh

 

By: Anna Zhao

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