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  • Volunteering Information

    Think twice before you volunteer information.

    Hello Captain Bob,

    I'm preparing for an
    interview. They are hiring 3 and I am currently third on the list.
    They are interviewing the top 12. The only thing I am worried about
    now, besides the interview, is a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct
    that I received in April of 1997 during a spring break trip. It occurred
    at a hotel party and several people were charged. I was asked about
    this in another interview. Actually they asked if I had
    anything to tell them about that they could find out if they checked. So
    I volunteered the information. How much will this count against me? Do
    you think they will even know about it? I had to do a finger print card
    at the police station. Thank You, Dave

    Dave:

    When you start volunteering information is when the wheels start coming off the wagon. This is something you don't bring up in an interview, even when they ask you, "If you had anything to tell them about that they could find out if they checked." This is something you cover with the background investigation.

    Your situation is not a big deal. It's how you explain the situation that makes difference. Yes, if you were charged, there is probably a record of it somewhere.

    A candidate knew this question was going to be asked in his chiefs interview. He wanted to mention that he had not been hired by another department because there were some "questionable" results about continual drug use on a polygraph testThat he said were wrong. We advised him not to bring it up. It never came up in the background. There was no polygraph test for this department. He was hired.

    The defense rests.

    "Nothing counts 'til you have the badge . . . Nothing!"

    "Captain Bob"

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