“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” –Eleanor Roosevelt
This year has seen me finish my second degree - a Graduate Diploma of Learning and Teaching through the University of Southern Queensland - an since then, the job hunt has been on again.
I have been a performer for most of my life so creating a character is not a new concept to me. I find it comes in useful in the interview process one needs to entertain in order to gain employment. I am not going to pretend to be an expert on this topic (because I am not) but especially for those that are nervous when put under pressure, or cannot sell themselves well, creating an alter-ego of yourself that comes out of the shadows just for the interview may be the way to secure your next job - or at least get through the interview alive!
I am writing this now as I prepare for my next interview for contract work in the beginning of 2017. I wouldn't necessarily say I am an introvert but I do prefer to sit back and let everyone else do the talking when it comes to environments I am not overly comfortable or familiar with. This whole idea of voicing my concerns has come to the front of my mind as I was informed this upcoming interview is in front of a panel. I can think of nothing better or more exciting than sitting in a room in front of two or more potential employers, trying to make myself look as if I know what I am talking about in order to obtain a position I'm not even sure I am capable of (please note the sarcasm). But this is all part and parcel of gaining employment so who am I to complain that I am at least getting a look in.
This whole idea of creating a character means developing your back story - where you have come to get to this seat in front of your interviewers and why you are the perfect candidate for the position they are offering. If you can't believe you are the right person, create the character that is. Not as simple as it sounds but can be effective none the less.
And I am not talking about making up stories of you rescuing an entire family from their burning home to only run back in to grab their beloved pet dog Scruffy. Or the time when you were the only one qualified to safely land the plane with 150 people on board. By all means though, if you have done any of the above, these stories can definitely assist your progression towards being a successful candidate unless, of course, the job is for the Grim Reapers position. I digress.
Take a look at what you have accomplished in your life so far. What level of education have you achieved and how did you get to that point? What are your passions? What makes you you and how do you think that will make a difference to the employers sitting across from you? What experiences in other lines of work have you had that have had a positive impact of how you have grown? This last can take from both positive and negative situations. The idea is to show how you have learnt from the situation and how you were able to move forward. This is a big selling point to potential employers so don't be afraid to show honesty.
If you want the job enough and there is no thought against why you shouldn't be able to succeed in the job, being honest and open with the interviewers shouldn't be too much of a tall order. Remember, although it may have been several years since their last interview, they have all come from the same position you sit in now. A good employer is not out of touch with the inexperience of a new candidate, they know how to see through your nerves and mistakes and identify the qualities that will make you successful in that position and a good employee.
So if you are reading this in preparation of your next interview, I wish you all the best. Otherwise a kind thought my way would not go a miss - I'm crapping myself!