The great difference in a job interview

Thumb big l0223 dwp 20140830 3032

The great difference in a job interview

Job interviews are a situation that strikes fear and trepidation in most people.

As I have been on both sides of the fence, on the hunt and being hunted, I know there are many types of interviews that are almost always based on a sliding scale. Furthermore, the new standard of interviews has become totally impersonal. Your CV is scanned by a computer for key words and phrases, and then possibly a phone interview is offered followed up with a face to face, possibly a skills test or something you are required to complete and then, after successfully completing all of this, it can go to a committee where someone might just decide that you were not what they were looking for.

There is another strange method which is outcome/performance orientated that has nothing to do with the job but how you approach it. In other words, if you know the steps in the process but have not executed them in a real life situation, and there has been no need for you to have used that knowledge in a practical way, there is still a possibility of your being employed in that job. Because you have ticked all of the boxes they are looking for and if you know the rules of how this game is played, you can get a job you know very little about and have very little experience with.

If you are successful enough to get to the last stage, then you have the pleasure of facing ‘The Panel’ – which can be intimidating where the ultimate conclusion is to see if you are good enough, and puts your self-worth in the spotlight.

I have experienced all the above types of interviews and have to say most of them are designed to reduce and crush the individual; there is no care, respect or regard for the person.

Today I am on the other side of the interview table and as I have the great pleasure of setting my own rules as to how I conduct my interviews, my main focus has become to make it about people first.

And this is how I do it:

I go through a lot of agency staff, so I get to do interviews quite often as I receive mountains of CVs from agencies, to the specification I require for the work needed. I set up interviews and that is when the fun begins. Before the interview I skim their CV and make some notes to remember which points I need to clarify with them. When they arrive I offer them a beverage and just the two of us go into the conference room. I inform them that this will be a very different interview. I introduce myself and give a little background of myself and of the building. I will ask them my questions for further clarification. In our conversation I mainly focus on who they are and not so much on what they can do. The whole interview in the office lasts for about 15 minutes, then we go for a walk around the building and I act like a tour guide. I work in a very large building and the tour takes about an hour, showing the work needed and any other possible places they could work.

At the end of the tour/interview I simply ask them if they were offered the job would they enjoy working here? This opens up the space for an honest conversation where most say yes, but others have said, “It looks like a great place to work but it’s not what I’m looking for”.

Through my livingness I have arrived at a point of awareness where I can feel what the interview process does to people, especially having experienced it first-hand. I see no reason why interviews cannot be fun and be conducted in a way that holds the other person as equal to myself. This beholding energy gives the interviewee the opportunity to just be themselves without having to pretend or please, and express openly. I am not expecting them to impress me or for them to give their power away to me, and I do not want to abuse my position of power due to being the boss.

My livingness has shown me that the process of getting a job does not have to be brutal, cold and uncaring. What I offer is a moment for them to feel that there is more than one way to conduct an interview that does not require them to reduce themselves. It is a moment for me to connect to another without any judgment or agenda.

My livingness spills out to other areas of my life as I treat the cleaners, the security guards, bus drivers, the MD and everyone in between in the same equality. I have conversations with them and not at them.

This way of living was shown to me by Serge Benahyon and now I can treat everyone I meet that same way. If he had not treated me with the same equality and respect I would still be a cog in the interview machine.

Filed under

LivingnessBrotherhoodCareerCompetitionSelf-esteemLeadershipReturning to work

  • Thumb small steve matson

    By Steve Matson, Photographer

  • Thumb small dean whitling

    Photography: Dean Whitling, Brisbane based photographer and film maker of 13 years.

    Dean shoots photos and videos for corporate portraits, architecture, products, events, marketing material, advertising & website content. Dean's philosophy - create photos and videos that have magic about them.