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Interview Secret

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  • Interview Secret

    This from a candidate:

    I took my first oral board today and without seeing the results I am pretty sure I bombed it. Next time I get the opportunity to interview I will pay way more atttention to the question then answer it. I am pretty sure I missed acouple of the two part questions because I was two busy formulating a response to the first part. Better luck next time I hope!

    It was with the City of Auburn WA. I will definately continue to rehearse some answers but first and foremost I think I need to listen to the questions and answer them more accurately. For instance i think they asked why I would be a good firefighter and I think I rwesponded with why I want to be a ff. The questions were not that hard I just was a bit flustered and I think I suffered as a result, but who knows maybe everyone else will suck *** and I will end up nicely positioned(I know, dream on!)

    "Captain Bob's" Reply:

    After seeing many candidates crash and burn on their oral boards, I developed this simple formula for answering quesions:

    There are Six Steps

    In Answering an Oral Board Question

    You should have a script that you have rehearsed with a tape recorder of anticipated questions by the time of your oral board. At the interview use these six simple steps in answering an oral board question:

    1. Actively listen to the entire question. I have seen candidates stop listening when they think they already have the answer. They don't. Listen!

    2. Make sure you understand the question. If not, have the question repeated or rephrased.

    3. Pause and gather your thoughts. It might seem like an eternity, but pausing is an acceptable tactic to show interviewers you are paying attention. During the pause, you can figure out the root of what they are asking.

    4. Ask the question or make the statement to clarify the question. The question might be, "You see your partner pick up something at an emergency scene, what are you going to do?" Taking the question down to its basic form, what is the issue? Stealing. Then, formulate a simple answer. For example, you might say, "I would ask, 'Is that yours?'" The board is going to tell you that he is taking it, but you already scored the points. After asking the question, you determine your partner is stealing, then what do you do? Since stealing is an ethical issue and he won't put it back, you might say, "Why don't we go the our supervisor?" Why? Stealing is against the law.

    5. KISS. Keep it simple sweetie. Don't start a soap opera. Most candidates complicate the process. They intellectualize their answers, run past the question, decide an answer before hearing the entire question and fail to understand the process.

    My son, Rob, was interviewing in Contra Costa County, Calif., and the question was asked, "You have just finished your interview and go outside and find a man down on the sidewalk. What would you do?" He answered, "I would go up and say, 'Buddy, are you all right?'" Someone finally got the answer right. For three days, job candidates were saying things like "Activate the 9-1-1 system" and "I know CPR."

    6. Deliver the Nugget answer with enthusiasm! Your personalized Nugget answer will set you apart from the clones.

    A word to women. You have the advantage of bringing more feelings and emotions to your answers at an interview. Be careful though. I've had women at interviews start talking and it was like going on a journey. There seemed to be no final destination. Most men on the panel were not packed for the trip. This can't be like a conversation with your girl friend. You have about 20 minutes to give complete but concise answers.

    Getting this job is a process. Here is a testimony how quickly it can happen:

    To: [email protected]

    Subject: Another success story

    Dear Captain Bob,

    I am writing to thank you again for your entry level program. I sent you an e-mail after my first interview outlining how much your program had improved my presentation. At that time, I mentioned that decisions were not expected until July.

    To my surprise, 8 days later I received a call from personnel. Could I attend a chiefs oral next week!! I was 1 of 30 to be called in for 23 jobs.(The first interviews involved 900 candidates). My first thoughts were "stay on that winning pony"

    After the chiefs oral, the good news kept coming. I got the call 2 days later with a conditional offer of employment! The background and medicals were done the following week.

    My most recent phone call came yesterday. I heard the words I have been working towards for six years- Congratulations, you have been accepted as a probationary fire fighter!! Uniform and equipment sizing is set for Saturday, can you attend?

    I can't stress enough how much your program helped me. I will be sure to recommend you to anyone I can.

    Thanks again!


    It proves that, "Nothing counts 'til you have the badge . . . Nothing!" Ask Brian

    Check out the FREE "101 Inside Secrets How to Get a Badge" off the job page of our web site @ www.eatstress.com

    "Captain Bob"

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