Interview scenarios – Expect the unexpected!

Interviews vary enormously.  Whilst most people’s conception of an interview is a classic one-on-one interview – and that is what most candidates may well be expecting – there are a multitude of possible scenarios:

  • Classic one-on-one interviews
  • Panel interviews
  • Competency-based interviews
  • Psychometric and aptitude tests
  • Presentations
  • Group interviews
  • Assessment centres
  • Distance interviews

The interview may be a quick, informal chat across a crowded office or it could involve a panel of interviewers all firing questions at you.  You may be asked to sit an aptitude test or prove that you have the necessary skills for the job – a typing test for example.  There may even be group activities with other candidates designed to see how you perform in a team situation.

Often, candidates fail to perform to the best of their abilities because they were thrown into a situation they were not expecting.

The answer?

You can’t prepare for every eventuality but you can certainly prepare for most!

Generally, you will only be expected to attend one interview.  However, it is important for you to be aware that many employers will require a second interview – or even a third.

You shouldn’t necessarily expect that each of the interviews will be of the same type though.  Your first interview might be by telephone, followed by a panel interview and ending up with an assessment centre for your third interview.  Regardless of the exact scenario, second and third interviews are generally more intensive and more detailed.

There’s nothing to worry about though.  If you’ve planned and prepared for all the following possible interview scenarios then you should be able to sail through the process, no matter how many interviews you are subjected to.

You should also find that the first interview gives you some idea of areas you will need to be prepared for in your second or third interviews.