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Old 08-11-2012, 10:41 AM
 
3,279 posts, read 6,607,924 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Three Wolves In Snow View Post
"Describe a time you and a co-worker had problems, how did you work it out?"

You can't NOT say anything negative to answer that question. The very question REQUIRES you to say something negative.
I remember at an interview once, I answered that question with "I have never had a disagreement with a co-worker at my present job" because that was the truth. I got along with everybody and never really disagreed with any of them. The interviewer seemed perturbed by my response. I guess it would have been better had I concocted some elaborate story about nearly getting into a fist fight with one of them, and then kissing and making up later on.

 
Old 08-11-2012, 10:42 AM
 
18,880 posts, read 9,629,862 times
Reputation: 5295
Quote:
Originally Posted by Three Wolves In Snow View Post
Here's my only problem with that:

If they don't want to hear anything bad about our last job, then stop asking the question:

"Describe a time you and a co-worker had problems, how did you work it out?"

You can't NOT say anything negative to answer that question. The very question REQUIRES you to say something negative.
No, it doesn't. :-) Simple to answer.

"I had a problem with a coworker who kept missing deadline he promised to a point it affected my work. I always remained professional and followed up with him diligently. In the meantime, I kept my boss in loop, and whenever it had potential to affect our project deadline, I made sure I involved my boss to resolve the issue. After the project was done, I made a few suggestions to my boss as how we could work better as a team. He actually called up a few meetings with all of us to address that. Since then, there was no problem."
 
Old 08-11-2012, 10:44 AM
 
18,880 posts, read 9,629,862 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebunny View Post
This is not what the OP means. (Well, I guess I am speaking for OP but it is not what I mean when I say not to speak badly about the former employer). OP likely means not to trash your boss, your job, the people you worked with or the company. An occasional negative comment is fine...you are no longer there/looking to leave so we know there is a reason. But keep it to job related, don't go on a tangent, and keep the negative comments to a minimum.

What I do not want to hear is something along the lines of (and I will paraphrase an actual interview)

"I am so excited about the opportunity here, as I am so ready to leave my current job. I am bored, they don't care if I am bored. My boss is rude. I try to leave early as I am bored, and my boss has issue with that and tells me to stay. I guess he just wants me to sit there and look good"

She was the front office receptionist.
You are very correct. :-)
 
Old 08-11-2012, 10:46 AM
 
18,880 posts, read 9,629,862 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by statisticsnerd View Post
I remember at an interview once, I answered that question with "I have never had a disagreement with a co-worker at my present job" because that was the truth. I got along with everybody and never really disagreed with any of them. The interviewer seemed perturbed by my response. I guess it would have been better had I concocted some elaborate story about nearly getting into a fist fight with one of them, and then kissing and making up later on.
Because it's a lie. How can you NOT have disagreement? Unless you work completely alone that is. :-)

You are lucky I was not interviewing you because you would not get away with that answer. :-)
 
Old 08-11-2012, 10:47 AM
 
18,880 posts, read 9,629,862 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Three Wolves In Snow View Post
Here's my only problem with that:

If they don't want to hear anything bad about our last job, then stop asking the question:

"Describe a time you and a co-worker had problems, how did you work it out?"

You can't NOT say anything negative to answer that question. The very question REQUIRES you to say something negative.
This is actually my bait to see if the candidate would crack or not. :-)
 
Old 08-11-2012, 10:48 AM
 
Location: Out West
22,736 posts, read 16,826,114 times
Reputation: 26294
Quote:
Originally Posted by statisticsnerd View Post
I remember at an interview once, I answered that question with "I have never had a disagreement with a co-worker at my present job" because that was the truth. I got along with everybody and never really disagreed with any of them. The interviewer seemed perturbed by my response. I guess it would have been better had I concocted some elaborate story about nearly getting into a fist fight with one of them, and then kissing and making up later on.
Count your blessings that you have not had bitchy co-workers like I have. Oh LORD some of them took the cake!

Quote:
Originally Posted by lifeexplorer View Post
No, it doesn't. :-) Simple to answer.

"I had a problem with a coworker who kept missing deadline he promised to a point it affected my work. I always remained professional and followed up with him diligently. In the meantime, I kept my boss in loop, and whenever it had potential to affect our project deadline, I made sure I involved my boss to resolve the issue. After the project was done, I made a few suggestions to my boss as how we could work better as a team. He actually called up a few meetings with all of us to address that. Since then, there was no problem."
Then I will fail that part of the interview if anyone ever asks me that because that answer makes me sound like a fricken tattle tale and a suck up.

Thank God the person who just hired me didn't ask me that question.
 
Old 08-11-2012, 10:56 AM
 
18,880 posts, read 9,629,862 times
Reputation: 5295
Quote:
Originally Posted by Three Wolves In Snow View Post
Count your blessings that you have not had bitchy co-workers like I have. Oh LORD some of them took the cake!



Then I will fail that part of the interview if anyone ever asks me that because that answer makes me sound like a fricken tattle tale and a suck up.

Thank God the person who just hired me didn't ask me that question.
Not true.

The answer would show you that you know how to respect the chain of command, know when to bring in your manager to get the resource you need, and know the importance of NOT missing the deadline.

It also shows you take initiative to correct a process that's broken.

An employee really can't get much better than that.
 
Old 08-11-2012, 10:56 AM
 
Location: Stuck on the East Coast, hoping to head West
3,785 posts, read 9,238,289 times
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IMO, the issue is with the interviewer and the process itself. Ideally, interviews would be a tool used to hire the best person for the job. This would generally mean someone who can actually do the job or be trained to do it. I've rarely, if ever, been interviewed by someone who had any idea how to do the job I was applying for or which skills were needed. How can he/she possibly know if I can do the job if they don't have a basic understanding of it. I learned early on that an interviewer wants to hire someone he/she likes and fits in. Ability to actually perform the job is a distant second. Need proof? I'd need days to document the people I've either worked with or dealt with who have no clue how to do their job.

I appreciate the OP sharing his/her thoughts. Everyone should know the game and how to play it.
 
Old 08-11-2012, 10:59 AM
 
18,880 posts, read 9,629,862 times
Reputation: 5295
Quote:
Originally Posted by bande1102 View Post
IMO, the issue is with the interviewer and the process itself. Ideally, interviews would be a tool used to hire the best person for the job. This would generally mean someone who can actually do the job or be trained to do it. I've rarely, if ever, been interviewed by someone who had any idea how to do the job I was applying for or which skills were needed. How can he/she possibly know if I can do the job if they don't have a basic understanding of it. I learned early on that an interviewer wants to hire someone he/she likes and fits in. Ability to actually perform the job is a distant second. Need proof? I'd need days to document the people I've either worked with or dealt with who have no clue how to do their job.

I appreciate the OP sharing his/her thoughts. Everyone should know the game and how to play it.
You forget, your technical skills only count 1/3 of your job performance if that. One can teach technical skills but can't really teach good attitude and work ethics.
 
Old 08-11-2012, 01:57 PM
 
18,880 posts, read 9,629,862 times
Reputation: 5295
Interesting. Nobody even bother to ask me what positions I have available. :-(
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