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Prepare appropriately for your job interview

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If you have been called to an interview – well done! Your CV has clearly impressed the employer. Now is your chance to impress them further and convince them that you are the type of employee they are looking for. Interviewers will want to know three key things:

1) What have you got that they need

2) How will you apply it to the role

3) And why do you want to work with them?

These three core questions can be asked in a variety of ways which we will explore further in next week’s column, but first you need to be very clear about what type of interview you are being called for and prepare appropriately for that particular format.

COMPETENCY

Competency interviews are the most commonly used format where employers identify five to six key characteristics/traits the successful candidate must be able to prove they have by providing examples.
The best approach here is to study the job specification carefully in the job advert, focus on the key competencies they are looking for, prepare examples from previous experience in a structured way and practice your answers out loud.

STRENGTH BASED INTERVIEWS

Strengths-based interviews are on the increase and focus on asking questions to figure out what you enjoy doing in the work context. What potential employers will want to hear is what your key strengths are and how they will benefit their company. You will need to study the job specification carefully to see what strengths they require for the role and then try to match that. Taking online personality and strength tests can help to reflect on what you are best at. Ask those that know you to help out too.

TECHNICAL INTERVIEWS

Technical interviews focus on the area(s) of expertise that are relevant to the job and will require you to prove what you will need to know when you are doing the job. For example, to get an engineering position you may be asked to solve a mechanical problem. Think about what specific tasks are relevant to the new role and practice them especially if it has been a while since you have worked on a task like that.

WHITEBOARD INTERVIEWS

Whiteboard interviews are usually used where analytical skills are required and this is where you will be asked to demonstrate that you can work something out in front of the interview board. It could be on a computer, a whiteboard or a piece of paper. You will definitely need to practice talking this process out with a friend as if you were teaching them how to solve the problem in question ahead of the interview.

PHONE INTERVIEWS

Phone interviews have become popular during COVID-19 because of social distancing and also because you are not at a disadvantage if WiFi isn’t reliable. Before this type of interview, practice with a friend to ensure you have good mobile coverage and make sure there are no distractions around you. It can help to have keywords/points written down to keep you focused when answering as it can be easy to drift off-topic when you are not face-to-face with in interviewer.

SKYPE/ZOOM/MICROSOFT TEAMS

Skype/Zoom/Microsoft Teams interviews are on the increase and you really need to be careful to ensure your best performance. Lighting and positioning of the camera is critical, be careful of your background and dress as if you were at a face-to-face interview. Be very careful of your microphone prior to the interview while waiting to be admitted to the ‘interview meeting’, during it and afterwards. You don’t want to be heard discussing the interviewers in the aftermath. Practice looking into the camera on your device and not the middle of the screen.

PRESENTATION INTERVIEWS

Presentation interviews can really stress some people out because of their fear of public speaking but remember this is a part of the interview that you can really control. Take care to check exactly how long you must talk for, keep any slides/props to a minimum and with simple content, and talk directly to the interviewers not the screen. Rehearse it in front of someone beforehand.

GROUP INTERVIEWS

Group interviews more often than not involve you and other candidates being given a topic often related loosely to the job to discuss. You are generally given some time to read through the content before the discussion starts. The aim here is to have your voice heard, to make a meaningful contribution but also be mindful of the views of others and their space to contribute. Interviewers will be looking for people that are assertive and understanding and that can lead a discussion but not take it over completely!

In next week’s column we will look more specifically at how to answer interview questions.

Niamh Dwyer is a Guidance Counsellor in Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra, Rathmore and PRO of Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors. She can be contacted on careerfocusnow@gmail.com.

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Training day for junior rowers

By Michelle Crean Junior members of Muckross Rowing Club were delighted to take part in a training day recently to fine tune their skills for upcoming events. Beginner to Junior 18 members competed in 19 races. The 500m sprints were held in octuples, quads and doubles. “Taking part in this sprint regatta will help Junior […]

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By Michelle Crean

Junior members of Muckross Rowing Club were delighted to take part in a training day recently to fine tune their skills for upcoming events.

Beginner to Junior 18 members competed in 19 races. The 500m sprints were held in octuples, quads and doubles.

“Taking part in this sprint regatta will help Junior Members prepare for upcoming regattas which are hoped to take place this summer,” Shóna O’Sullivan said.

“Those racing were cheered on by their fellow team mates at the Garden Quays. The races were exciting to watch, especially the races that ended in a photo finish.”

The competitors refuelled with a barbecue cooked by Bernie and Seamus O’Sullivan, she added.

“Thanks to Bernie, Seamus, all coaches and committee members that helped this training session run successfully in accordance with COVID-19 guidelines.”

On the same day Seán Daly Chairperson of Muckross Rowing Club presented Jane and Lila Ryan with Honorary Associated Membership for their generous contribution of €500 to the club.

“Our rowing club are extremely grateful for their generosity.”

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Hike up Strickeen Mountain for air ambulance

  Locals and visitors are being invited to join a guided ascent of Strickeen Mountain on July 4 to raise funds for the Irish Community Air Ambulance. The hike, described as an easy to moderate climb and family friendly well be led by Killarney-based Irish Community Air Ambulance volunteer and tour guide Krzysztof Szwab. It […]

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Locals and visitors are being invited to join a guided ascent of Strickeen Mountain on July 4 to raise funds for the Irish Community Air Ambulance.

The hike, described as an easy to moderate climb and family friendly well be led by Killarney-based Irish Community Air Ambulance volunteer and tour guide Krzysztof Szwab.

It is expected that the 7.5km hike will take around three hours to complete and participants will benefit from the expertise of Krzysztof for a minimum donation €10 per person or €20 per family.

Strickeen Mountain is the eastern most peak of the MacGillycuddy’s Reeks and the hike will start from the Gap of Dunloe at 11am on the day.

As an added bonus fruit and water, donated by local supermarkets including Lidl, Aldi and Daly’s SuperValu, will be provided. The first 20 to register will receive a limited edition Irish Community Air Ambulance face covering snood.

“This is an ideal opportunity for someone who has never climbed this mountain, but wants to do it with the help of an experienced guide,” Donie Lucey, who is one of the Irish Community Air Ambulance’s chief fundraisers, said.

Further details are available from Donie on 086 854 5873 or from Krzysztof on 087 7589697 after 6pm.

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Golf club launches Summer Series competition

By Sean Moriarty Competitive golfing has resumed at Killarney Golf and Fishing Club marking another step towards normality in the locality. The O’Mahony’s Point course hosted an open singles event on Monday last and this competition will continue every Monday for the rest of the summer. Meanwhile the club’s ‘TaylorMade’ Summer Series gets underway at […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Competitive golfing has resumed at Killarney Golf and Fishing Club marking another step towards normality in the locality.

The O’Mahony’s Point course hosted an open singles event on Monday last and this competition will continue every Monday for the rest of the summer.

Meanwhile the club’s ‘TaylorMade’ Summer Series gets underway at the famed Killeen course this coming Wednesday (June 23). This series will continue every Wednesday for eight weeks and top five scorers on each date will qualify for a Grand Final which is scheduled for Sunday, August 22.

“We are delighted to launch the ‘TaylorMade’ Summer Series. This is a singles stableford event taking place on the Irish Open course, Killeen,” said the club’s marketing manager Meg Dalton. “With over €8,000 worth of prizes to be won, this is an event not to be missed. The first opportunity to qualify for the grand final is Wednesday.”

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