Case Study 4: Graduate Interview Skills

Have you got what it takes to be your best self in interviews?
Have you got what it takes to be your best self in interviews?

“Self-praise is no praise.”

An oft-repeated phrase one heard growing up in Ireland, it’s the opposite of what we need to do as business owners: promote our services!

Fortunately, two clients wrote such eloquent and descriptive recommendations that I decided to share them here. For reasons of distance, all sessions were done over Skype, and because of the technical nature of Tyrone’s qualification, my Associate, Andrew Scott, took some sessions as well as the usual practice of joining me for the usual mock interviews at the end. The recommendations are taken from LinkedIn.

Beverley Arnold

Beverley Arnold knew about my work from a conversation in South Africa in 2018. She wrote:

“Interviewing for a first job can be a daunting process, but actually getting an interview is even harder to do. Degrees, Diplomas and High School certificates are an essential part of the process of becoming a member of an employed and financially independent adult society. It is difficult to place a value on those years of effort in acquiring a useful and in-demand skillset if one remains unemployed after graduating. Doing well in a course and building the said skill set does not build one’s self-esteem and give one confidence if they are not getting one past the start line in the recruitment process.

“BESPOKEN offers the opportunity to open those doors in the recruitment process by coaching and thoroughly preparing the candidate for the recruitment process. The course is thorough and individualised and is based on the first interview and assessment, where goals and concerns are discussed, and strengths and weaknesses are established.

“Candidates are then guided through the recruitment process, beginning with a general strategy, CV preparation and evaluation, interview processes and styles, and effective communication, from written format to spoken format. Our son, a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) honours graduate had been actively looking for work for 4 months, without much success.

“Within 2 weeks of working with BESPOKEN, he was getting numerous responses after submitting his CV, had a number of interviews with prospective employers and was offered 2 positions. He is now gainfully employed and confidently interacting with his bosses and peers. The skills gained as a result of working with BESPOKEN will continue to be useful throughout his career.”

Tyrone Arnold

My client and her son, Tyrone, wrote:

“Having graduated with Honours in GIS and travelling, I returned to South Africa expecting to find a job relatively easily. The reality was entirely different – I struggled for 4 months before approaching BESPOKEN for coaching.

Starting right at the basics, Fiona worked with me to construct a CV which, when completed, immediately started generating interest from companies. From there, we moved on to interview preparation – starting with how to conduct effective research into prospective companies which puts one on the front foot going into an interview. Subsequent to this, we tackled the interview process itself – from questions and answers to diction and positive body language.

“Next, Fiona and her associate conducted several mock interviews with me and reviewed the positives and negatives of my performance in each one. Additionally, prior to each real interview I attended, we would conduct a mock interview as if I were interviewing with that company. As part of the entire coaching process, Fiona taught me a routine which included physical, vocal and presence exercises which helped me to centre myself and feel relaxed before beginning an interview. This process meant that, before I even spoke, I was already projecting the right attitude toward the interviewers.

“At the end of the process, I had offers from several companies and was able to negotiate a highly competitive starting salary, which BESPOKEN also supported. The skills that I learned through BESPOKEN are not isolated to the process of searching for a job; in my current role, they are invaluable to interfacing with clients and peers within my company. I really cannot recommend the service BESPOKEN offers enough: I went from struggling to get interviews to getting a jumpstart to my career.”

I have to say, I am humbled by the time and effort both Bev and Tyrone took to write this. If you know someone or are someone who wants the support of a coach through the interview process, please get in touch and let’s book a conversation to see what I can do for you.

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