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theWookie 29 June 2011 13:59

3rd interview advice
Good afternoon folks - I am going for my third interview tomorrow (for the same job) and I am looking for any tips or advice any of the professionals from here might offer. I know it is down to me and another guy, he has much more technical experience than me -- but I have an insider and he's told me that they like "me", and my people skills more. The position is for a simulator technician at a state university. It is a semi-military maritime school.

It does not require a technical genius (no degree's required but I have an ASBA) - but a mix of tech skills and strong people skills. The position will have me interacting with students and instructors. Besides my great people skills, they like the fact that I have a military/instructor background, and I also have experience working with military weapon simulators (ISMT) back in the day.

I have one specific question in addition to any general tips offered. The first interview I wore a suit and was clean shaven. I noticed at the interview the people that I will be working with, and for, have beards. So, since it took two weeks to get called back for the second interview, and since I can grow hair like a bear -- I decided to "wear" a beard (only two weeks growth, but for me that is a beard) The second interview went well, (wore a suit jacket, khaki's and tie) since they have me coming back, but not that good since I didn't get an offer.

This time I am meeting with a department head (bearded guy) and a VP (googled him - no beard).

My gut told me for the second interview that I should have shaved, but I uncharacteristically went against my gut.

This time, I think I am going to shave and get back into a suit.

Thanks in advance for the tips/advice/guidance. :smile:

Sigi 29 June 2011 14:01

Shave. Wear a suit.

SOTB 29 June 2011 14:48

Shave. Wear a suit. You can always grow a beard and wear t-shirst, cutoffs, and flip-flops later (once you have the gig).

Go in there and hit them up with what they like -- they like YOU and your personality skills. Show them that. Be confident. Be proud they have chosen you to get this far. And be sure that there is no one on the planet who is better for that position than you are....

HighDragLowSpeed 29 June 2011 15:04

I've done the multiple day interview circuits before....on both sides of the table. Don't chance being unshaven, without a suit, or without shiny shoes (especially if there is a woman in your interview loop...they always notice shoes and heels on those shoes)

Other than that, passion always separates two otherwise equal candidates.

Jason8541 29 June 2011 15:20

Ditto on all the other points. Make it known that you want to be a part of their organization, instead of giving them the impression that you are on just another job hunt for a state job with cushy benefits.

Sigi 29 June 2011 15:26

3rd interviews mean something....

I have been with my current company for 4 years (sales) and they flew us in for the "final interview." I did not look at this as some kind of formality, but another step closer to my goal. 3 people were flown in (me being the 3rd) and one of the idiots didn't make it.

Why? Because he failed to understand that this is a process. He had to interview with the 5-6 other people he would have to work with. Casual, one on one, 5 mins each, and never once asked what they do each day, what they needed from him/her, ect... He QUIT interviewing and talked about stupid shit.

Be confident. You're getting a 3rd interview for a very good reason. Given this job market I would venture to say they like you! If they ask you "what do you think you need to work on/professional faults" are, don't be afraid to tell them you work to hard.

Good luck!

Sigi 29 June 2011 15:29


Originally Posted by SOTB (Post 1058003953)
And be sure that there is no one on the planet who is better for that position than you are....

So true! Any interview (or sales call) I have been on has always been about the above. Period. End of discussion.

GirlwithaGlock 29 June 2011 21:08

My $0.02:

Shave. Suit. Tie. No obnoxious cologne. Your look should be mute and very classic.

Be prepared to tell your interviewers what your short-term game plan is, should you get hired. Literally, tell them how you are going to contribute on your first day, first week, first month. They want to see you being able to take initiative in a tactful manner, without stepping on others' toes.

You may get a direct question about the gap in your technical expertise. Here is how you can handle it. Admit the knowledge gap. Assure the interviewers that you understand how critical it is for you to close it ASAP. Give them a specific example from your previous professional/military/school life when you had a similar challenge, how you approached it (took a course/read online resources/stayed overtime for OTJ training), and what were the results of your actions (knowledge gap closed, able to perform job duties in a satisfactory fashion).

Since you have an insider, find out what current challenges the organization faces. Research the possible solutions and be comfortable discussing them.

Show them that you are the expert and the problem solver and you are there to be a part of the team. Stay confident but humble.

Finally, while the fact that you are invited to the third interview is a darn good sign, do not get comfortable (no inappropriate jokes, no former employer bashing, no profane language - even if everyone around does it). Be as courteous, professional, and pleasant as you were before - I am sure you'll do great!

Good luck!

theWookie 29 June 2011 22:31

Great info Gents, and Ladies. Thank you very much, I appreciate it.

I'll let you know how it goes!

Stretch 29 June 2011 22:37

Third interview: you have the credentials and the skills...

Relax and be yourself, in a manner that suits this job.

Good Luck.


maim 29 June 2011 22:54

I've been in exactly the same situation numerous times.
It is up to you to persuade the interviewer that you will last longer than the other guy.
Assuming that you have a CV somewhat like mine, it is very difficult for "normal" people to believe that you will stay longer than 6 months.
Good luck mate,

nofear 30 June 2011 00:06

Shave, wear a suit. And tell the truth if they ask you why you shaved this time but had a beard last time.

All the above advice is good too.

It took me 2 years of interviews and tests to be where I am today. Do you think I took any risks with that process?

Dark Helmet 30 June 2011 00:19

Shave, suit. Good suit. Expensive shoes. Shined.

Good luck. Let us know how it goes.

24/7 30 June 2011 06:06


Originally Posted by GirlwithaGlock (Post 1058004083)
Stay confident but humble.

do not get comfortable (no inappropriate jokes, no former employer bashing, no profane language - even if everyone around does it). Be as courteous, professional, and pleasant as you were before - I am sure you'll do great!

We use a series of interviews like this all the time, each one has a purpose. Personally, I think they've already made up there mind this is just to confirm with a side by side. Be honest, confident, humble and try to answer all questions with clear and concise answers. Sometimes it's not the answer to the question that is important but how you answer it, body language can also be observed.

Good luck.

maim 30 June 2011 06:23

"Sometimes it's not the answer to the question that is important but how you answer it"

x 100

Body language, upright, arms akimbo, knees slightly apart and mimic subtly any gestures

the interviewer has.

Good luck mate,


STOIC1 30 June 2011 14:47

Do your research... Know about the company or organization, in case they ask.

Wear earth toned colors such as olive, brown, or a beige. Whether you're wearing a suit or dressed down. Don't wear super bright colors.

When you come in the room, make sure you smile and shake hands and introduce yourself to everyone there, "Hi nice to meet you/goodmorning, my name is..." and say that to each person. REMEMBER THEY DON'T HAVE TO BE THERE, they're probably busy people and they're taking time out of their schedule to listen to you tell them why you deserve a job, so make sure they know you appreciate their time.

Use the "baseball diamond"... the "baseball diamond" method is one way to answer questions when going to an interview board. When they ask a question:

1st. Answer the Question: "I want this job because..."

2nd. Relate the question to yourself: "My experience in the Military, I taught..."

3rd. Related the question to the future "I see myself as a part of your team by doing..":

Home. Relate the question back to yourself and family "Teaching is one of the most rewarding experiences....when I get home I know I did an honest days work for an honest days pay..." Answer the questions completely without rambling.

Always speak in the 1st person... don't say things like "when YOU go to work..." "many times WE forget..." "when YOU'RE an instructor YOU should always..."

Never speak bad about yourself... if they ask you something like "Tell us about a time where you failed at something... and what you did about it" don't pick something really bad.. pick something like "I put together my daughters bed without looking at the directions, when all of the sudden..."

If there's an opportunity, use humor, like an Ice Breaker. But don't be overly friendly.

At the end they'll let you know "this concludes our interview... do you have any questions for us?.." It might be good to have a small question about maybe a 401k or how many other instructors they have that do what you'll be doing.

Last. when you get up, Thank each person... "If I could just say, I know you're all busy people, but you took the time to listen to what I had to say, and I want you to know I appreciate your time" It shows sincerity.

those are just a few things that I think will separate you from the other candidates.

Hope it helps.

Scotty 30 June 2011 15:17

You are probably already there right now, but get the conversation off the interview and onto THEM. Talk about their interests, their hobbies, THEIR lives. Find common ground, if you're going to be working with/for them every day, they'll want to know they have a like-minded/similar interests sort of person with them. I got half my jobs by not talking about the job, but about their kids, their pictures of vacations and how much I too loved Cozumel, and how I enjoy women's lacross from a spectator's viewpoint...

As mentioned, look good, feel good, know enough about the company to be able to say at least once "I notice you guys are starting to implement/investigate _____, I worked with a similar system back in _____".

And smile like you mean it.


theWookie 30 June 2011 17:02

Well, I just got back and it went great! I appreciate all the great info passed on and it was spot on -- I needed to hear and be reminded of some of it. I made up a two paged document of bullet points from comments made here which I studied while driving there, and in that parking lot waiting to go in.

I should know something tomorrow and I'll keep you posted. :cool:

SOTB 30 June 2011 17:15

Rooting for you!!!!

Sigi 30 June 2011 18:58

Good luck!

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