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    Hello

    I've got an interview on Monday where I'll be asked 7 competency questions my answers of which have to cover 4/5 key areas.

    I have prepared answers to 11 questions, hopefully the 7 they'll asked me will be amongst these.

    The problem I'm having is that some answers cover multiple competencies but are stronger for 1 competency in particular and I'm worried that I'll use the wrong examples.

    Is it a good idea to take in a list of bullet points for my examples, i.e the list of 11 areas that I've prepared for then something to jog my memory for the example I want to use, for example something like:

    Problem solving - Changed data capture methods, business services.

    So then I know for that area I'm going to talk about when I changed the way we captured data and not an example when I solved a different problem that dealt more with Influencing Others.

    Is that a good idea? Is it the done thing? I usually take in a piece of paper with my questions at the end of the interview but never something to jog my memory for their questions.
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    (Original post by Trout)

    Is that a good idea? Is it the done thing? I usually take in a piece of paper with my questions at the end of the interview but never something to jog my memory for their questions.
    Not really, you will be expected to manage an interview without notes. You've done the right thing in preparing, but that's the test of an interview, thinking on your feet and delivering the best answer to a question. If you think you've 'used up' an answer previously, you can refer back to it and point out it also required this competency they asked about, and then give your second best piece of evidence.
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    I usually take notes, paper and a couple of pens. I jot down things that I think they might ask me, or things that I really want to make sure I say on the day. Sometimes they will tell you the exact format for the interview (my last interview told me the specific questions in the exact order in which they arose) and others will just ask general stuff. Either way, notes can be useful in this sense.

    I'd just advise against writing an essay. A few bullet points should be fine, as well as some questions you might like to ask them. Also avoid questions about the salary... Look like you want the job, not the money. If they ask, then that's fine, but try not to request it.


    I suppose it's a toss-up between looking like you've not prepared (because you have notes) or showing them that you can take paperwork into a setting and use notes properly. I would personally argue that it's better to have something because you'll inevitably forget to mention a few things otherwise.
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    I disagree with the above.

    Using notes in an interview to answer questions doesn't look professional. One of the things they'll likely be looking for in an interview is your confidence and ability to think on your feet, and bringing notes does nothing to help in that regard.

    Further, it doesn't exactly look very genuine. We all prepare for interviews of course, but you should really be able to talk about your own experiences from memory. To read it off paper looks almost like you're over embellishing and trying to recite a story in my opinion.

    Of course there will be some interviewers that won't mind, but there will be some who will. However you won't find an interviewer who marks you down for not bringing notes though, so it would seem to be a safer option.
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    It can be hard to predict questions you may be asked, but it is worthwhile thinking of couple of different but good examples you could use in the interview this will illustrate to your interviewer your skills, experinnces and how you dealt with situation etc

    I have taken notes out in the interview in the past which have been in regards to the background of the company the market they trade in etc on couple of occassions i have been given the wierd look from the interviewer when taking the notes out but generally i dont think it is a good idea but it can be difficult to remember everything sometimes you got to take the gamble because it can also show you have done your research

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    (Original post by SillyEddy)
    I usually take notes, paper and a couple of pens. I jot down things that I think they might ask me, or things that I really want to make sure I say on the day. Sometimes they will tell you the exact format for the interview (my last interview told me the specific questions in the exact order in which they arose) and others will just ask general stuff. Either way, notes can be useful in this sense.

    I'd just advise against writing an essay. A few bullet points should be fine, as well as some questions you might like to ask them. Also avoid questions about the salary... Look like you want the job, not the money. If they ask, then that's fine, but try not to request it.


    I suppose it's a toss-up between looking like you've not prepared (because you have notes) or showing them that you can take paperwork into a setting and use notes properly. I would personally argue that it's better to have something because you'll inevitably forget to mention a few things otherwise.
    Using notes shows a lack of preparation and how unprofessional you are.
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    (Original post by ForgetMe)
    Using notes shows a lack of preparation and how unprofessional you are.
    I would imagine that's why people never take notes to conferences or bring paperwork when discussing topics with clients then?

    To say it's a lack of preparation is like saying an exam will help you to get into the right frame of mind for tackling problems in a work place. In reality, you collaborate and work as a team.


    As I say, there's a fine line between looking as if you're unprepared or not looking like you're bothered. I take notes to cover the major topics and to remind myself of what I need to say. Taking several pages of writing is no good, but bullet points to guide your conversation seem fine to me.
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    (Original post by SillyEddy)
    I would imagine that's why people never take notes to conferences or bring paperwork when discussing topics with clients then?

    To say it's a lack of preparation is like saying an exam will help you to get into the right frame of mind for tackling problems in a work place. In reality, you collaborate and work as a team.


    As I say, there's a fine line between looking as if you're unprepared or not looking like you're bothered. I take notes to cover the major topics and to remind myself of what I need to say. Taking several pages of writing is no good, but bullet points to guide your conversation seem fine to me.
    There's a difference between notes for a meeting and notes for a job.
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    I decided not to take the notes in and memorised my bullet points the best I could.

    I ended up preparing 13 different examples for different competencies but still 2 of the questions they asked I was completely unprepared for: one was a scenario and the other was about what types of people I find difficult to work with. I muddled through them OK...won't find out until the end of April whether or not I got the job.
 
 
 
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