U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Work and Employment > Job Search
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 01-30-2019, 07:22 PM
 
3,771 posts, read 5,485,634 times
Reputation: 2990

Advertisements

This was kind of unusual. I had a phone interview with HR. It lasted about 20 mins. I was kind of on edge trying to make sure I did a good job answering questions. But a good chunk of it was talking shop. If you don't know that term, it means discussing the industry in a sort of fun way. I never thought HR could be cool in that way.



I did have to address some concerns like if I was good on computers and liked sitting at a desk for hours. I said that I had worked on large national accounts and used proprietary software and like to be on computers when I am really interested in the subject. Other than that, they had not indicated concerns.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-31-2019, 07:25 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles
12,199 posts, read 10,408,030 times
Reputation: 33311
The first phone screening is usually to just feel you out. Both your personality and some of your history/skills etc... So they do tend to keep it more informal to just know what kind of person you are. You can tell a lot by doing this.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2019, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Kirkland, WA (Metro Seattle)
4,032 posts, read 3,276,617 times
Reputation: 7171
Quote:
Originally Posted by FelixTheCat View Post
This was kind of unusual. I had a phone interview with HR. It lasted about 20 mins. I was kind of on edge trying to make sure I did a good job answering questions. But a good chunk of it was talking shop. If you don't know that term, it means discussing the industry in a sort of fun way. I never thought HR could be cool in that way.

(snip)
I do believe a skillful HR person will disarm nervousness and draw out a candidate. Talking shop...your industry...during is a great way to do this, if the candidate wishes to. HR can suss-out what you are interested and passionate about, which btw should always be something related to their (company) core values. You've done your homework, prior, and know what they care about. Usually it's on the website. It's always splashed somewhere in their press releases or similar, too.

Some years ago I spoke to a client who only had one question, about some volunteerism I did overseas. I cautiously moved into that discussion, thoughts zooming in what she was after: sure enough, I got it. Servant Leadership, a big deal these days for executive level roles it seems like. I humbly went on about some of that a few minutes, then organically became rather passionate, because I do feel that way about that particular subject. It was a grand slam with that customer, we could say that conversation was ultimately "worth" $25K more/year I subsequently earned.

So-called "Unstructured" interviews are still interviews.

PS: I once interviewed with a firm that had (N) core values, I've forgotten exactly, but let's say six: "Teamwork, Honesty, Courage, Customer-Focus, Fred, and Ted." Okay. Not once, not twice, but three times before I actually spoke with anyone in-person, HR mentioned those "core values": enshrined in the booklet they sent me pre-interview, mentioned in the pre-screen by-phone, and morning-of the HR twit mentioned it one more time. Fine, don't have to tell me twice to memorize those values and hone in on them when I in-turn am interviewing these people.

Each subsequent interviewer arrived, and went on in some monotone about the same crap I've heard a hundred times. A few minutes in, I asked the following: "So, Sally Smith, a (firm) core value is courage and ability to face conflict. Please provide a specific instance of when this occurred during your professional life here at (firm), and how you handled it."

Reply: <crickets chirping>. Question dismissed/ignored.

Next interviewer, same. BB: "So, honesty is a core-value of (firm). Please provide a specific...(ditto).

Reply: <crickets chirping>. Question dismissed if-anything faster.

By the time of third real interviewer I was genuinely puzzled. These "core values" must, I figured, be the credo of the whole firm, right? Those last two clowns in interview three, a mini-panel, really didn't provide me an opportunity to drill into any of that further.

The so-called "core values" are/were horse-hockey. Some HR boob made it up ten years ago, the executives at C-level embraced it, and directed everyone in HR to disseminate that as "how we operate" to the troops. Nothing could be further from the truth, though I bet every damned Director in that meeting with the VP or GM nodded, smiled, and said "Yes ma'am, we'll get right on that!" It was all a fraud.

Didn't get that job, my contempt probably was pretty clear about that time. Don't come in handing me a bag of flaming poo and tell me it's a bouquet of roses. End of story.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2019, 11:36 PM
 
3,771 posts, read 5,485,634 times
Reputation: 2990
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondebaerde View Post
I do believe a skillful HR person will disarm nervousness and draw out a candidate. Talking shop...your industry...during is a great way to do this, if the candidate wishes to. HR can suss-out what you are interested and passionate about, which btw should always be something related to their (company) core values. You've done your homework, prior, and know what they care about. Usually it's on the website. It's always splashed somewhere in their press releases or similar, too.

Some years ago I spoke to a client who only had one question, about some volunteerism I did overseas. I cautiously moved into that discussion, thoughts zooming in what she was after: sure enough, I got it. Servant Leadership, a big deal these days for executive level roles it seems like. I humbly went on about some of that a few minutes, then organically became rather passionate, because I do feel that way about that particular subject. It was a grand slam with that customer, we could say that conversation was ultimately "worth" $25K more/year I subsequently earned.

So-called "Unstructured" interviews are still interviews.

PS: I once interviewed with a firm that had (N) core values, I've forgotten exactly, but let's say six: "Teamwork, Honesty, Courage, Customer-Focus, Fred, and Ted." Okay. Not once, not twice, but three times before I actually spoke with anyone in-person, HR mentioned those "core values": enshrined in the booklet they sent me pre-interview, mentioned in the pre-screen by-phone, and morning-of the HR twit mentioned it one more time. Fine, don't have to tell me twice to memorize those values and hone in on them when I in-turn am interviewing these people.

Each subsequent interviewer arrived, and went on in some monotone about the same crap I've heard a hundred times. A few minutes in, I asked the following: "So, Sally Smith, a (firm) core value is courage and ability to face conflict. Please provide a specific instance of when this occurred during your professional life here at (firm), and how you handled it."

Reply: <crickets chirping>. Question dismissed/ignored.

Next interviewer, same. BB: "So, honesty is a core-value of (firm). Please provide a specific...(ditto).

Reply: <crickets chirping>. Question dismissed if-anything faster.

By the time of third real interviewer I was genuinely puzzled. These "core values" must, I figured, be the credo of the whole firm, right? Those last two clowns in interview three, a mini-panel, really didn't provide me an opportunity to drill into any of that further.

The so-called "core values" are/were horse-hockey. Some HR boob made it up ten years ago, the executives at C-level embraced it, and directed everyone in HR to disseminate that as "how we operate" to the troops. Nothing could be further from the truth, though I bet every damned Director in that meeting with the VP or GM nodded, smiled, and said "Yes ma'am, we'll get right on that!" It was all a fraud.

Didn't get that job, my contempt probably was pretty clear about that time. Don't come in handing me a bag of flaming poo and tell me it's a bouquet of roses. End of story.

What you described does seem to be a way to get around BS. I read somewhere that in a cover letter you shouldn't say generic stuff, like "team player" or "attention to detail". Those things are great. But it seems like you are just saying stuff to sound like you are the person they want. Instead you have to show it. Even if the cover letter isn't a comprehensive response, it's a lot better to demonstrate in a unique way and give examples of why you responded to the ad.


As for me, I was honest. I said that the job description was much like a life long hobby of mine. And that I was looking for a new career, so I thought that it would be a good idea to work in an industry that I have always be interested in.


I think I may have seemed a bit more enthusiastic about the conversation than the HR interviewer. For example, I said, "wow I didn't know that, and then I elaborated".
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-03-2019, 09:26 AM
 
2,487 posts, read 709,914 times
Reputation: 3477
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blondebaerde View Post
Fred, and Ted.
No, it was Bill & Ted.

*air guitar*
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-05-2019, 12:15 PM
 
Location: Northern panhandle WV
3,007 posts, read 2,179,571 times
Reputation: 6696
My husband once got one of his favorite jobs at a high end audio video company because during chit chat he mentioned that he had been working on building a Home Movie theater, [a real one].
Another time he went on a lunch interview with future boss and team, and he spent most of it asking each of them what they saw as the problems at work that needed solutions, instead of just answering questions.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-06-2019, 11:49 AM
 
6,904 posts, read 7,308,990 times
Reputation: 9808
You can't really tell how an interview went or what chances you have to get a gig, based on the fact that you talked shop
before, during, or after an interview. Most interviews I've had over the decades have involved some kind of chit-chat.

The most you could say is you didn't turned the interviewer off to the point where s/he cut the interaction short. But that's about it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-12-2019, 03:26 PM
 
162 posts, read 73,333 times
Reputation: 326
I sort of disagree with selhars about that. I would say it shold have some significance, rather than virtually none.


But really, it depends on the job and the company.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-14-2019, 11:42 AM
 
Location: Seattle
1,805 posts, read 1,032,261 times
Reputation: 3110
As HR for my company we've found me doing a preliminary phone interview works best. My presentation is casual and while a work from an outline (to not forget key points) the dialogue is unscripted.

This is to primarily to verify the candidate understands the job posting, posted pay rate and schedule and at least have done some research on our company/industry. If they can "talk shop" that is some big points to them.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Work and Employment > Job Search
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top