I've been on three group interviews so far and haven't had any luck whatsoever. I've got another scheduled for Tuesday and I'd love it if any of you with HR experience could give me some tips or pointers.
What type of position is the group interview for? How many people show up? What type of questions are being asked? What kind of answers are you giving? Where do you sit (front or back)? How do you dress in comparison to others attending? How much research on the company or Hiring Manager do you conduct prior to attending?
Bottom line, group interviews give companies a chance to view candidates in a different dimension than one-on-one. How will you react when questions are asked? How do you acknowledge the other candidates while they are speaking?
If it were me, I'd dress appropriately (call the Receptionist if you aren't sure), come with extra copies of my resume, bring a notebook and pen, and I'd sit in front, ask good questions, and address the Hiring Manager by name (Mr./Mrs Smith, not "Ted").
Also, don't hesitate to politely exit the interview if it appears like the situation or the company isn't a good fit for you. It helps you establish control, which reinforces your value. It also alerts the company that you might be someone they can't have and that can frequently make you appear as though you are more valuable than the rest of the cattle that stayed behind in the room. Note, if you do get up and leave, have a meaningful answer and be professionally polite as you do so.
Yeah, it's me and two to four other applicants interviewed usually by a panel of three to four interviewers. I dress professionally but nothing too crazy (white dress shirt and tie, no jacket) and they ask the traditional "tell us about your strengths/blah blah blah" questions but I've also run into little prepared group scenarios where you have to work together to attain the goal.
The interview today felt like it went well (fingers crossed) but I had the same feeling after the last two so I'm not getting my hopes up.
The only group interview I ever had was for a bank teller position at Wells Fargo when I was like, 19. Like someone else above said - it was awkward to say the least. It seemed they highly favored people who spoke up most and were the most outgoing. It's not in my nature to be the "loud" one of the group and I like to observe my surroundings and think before answering. They said I wouldn't be given further considersation because I didn't "speak up."
I did a group interview for Raytheon before for an internship position, it was weird and felt like what scandalous_cynce mentioned during his group interview and not really sure how they screened the candidates since there was over 40 people there and they narrowed it down to like 10 for one on one interviews at a later date, but they had like four people from the company screening, but it really did benefit all of the outgoing people in sticking out.
I've only been in group interviews- my industry is IT. Generally it is a one on one meeting with a hiring manager or a someone weeding people out and then anywhere from 2 - 10 people. I don't know the purpose of a group larger than 4-5, other than to maybe see how you react in a group/meeting situation. When I had ten people, I had to white board scenarios and take questions from the team.
I like the advice that DD had because in a couple of these interviews, I knew instantly that I could not work with these people, but I wasted my time and finished the process, which can be 4-5 hours of your day. Looking back, there were a couple of times that I wish I had the balls to leave.
LEAVE! LEAVE! LEAVE! LEAVE! LEAVE! LEAVE! LEAVE!
God it feels good to take control and then look on as the rest of the cows are headed to the slaughter. I had one manager one time volunteer to show me out (secure facility) and the whole time he was telling me that I was the one he wanted and what could he do to change my mind.
Been there, done that while looking for jobs out of college. The conversation went like this:
Me to "recruiter": "I don't recall you saying that this would be a group interview. Or that the position would be focused on doing door to door fundraising. You stated the role was for a policy/issue researcher."
"recruiter": "Look. If I told you the truth, would you be here today?"
Me: "Okay, well, I appreciate you giving me the opportunity to interview but this clearly isn't what you said it was. Based on that I'm going to exit the process immediately and not waste any more of my time. Thanks."
"recruiter": ". . ." "You can't do that! You were one of my best candidates!"
Me: *shuts door*
Never pays to bait and switch.
Little Caeser's - interviewed by store manager
Performance Bike Shop - interviewed by store manager
First job out of college - interviewed by CTO of the school system
2nd job - interviewed by department director and co-worker
Current job - interviewed by head of office HR, department manager; direct manager, co-worker and various attorneys/paralegals
Last edited by Hostile; 04-20-2012 at 02:52 PM.
The first time I had ever heard of this was when my wife had one at some yoga store a few months ago. She felt very awkward about it and frankly, so would I. It's bad enough it's you against who knows how many other applicants as it is without actually sitting in a room with them trying to one up each other. I really don't see any point to it unless they are doing a mass hiring and the "interview" is really just a formality where they are planning on hiring the whole group anyway.
I got interviewed today by a panel, and it was a little akward. I felt like I did well, but it was difficult giving everyone equal eye contact, etc. When there was an uneven distribution of the questions asked by each person. I interviewed for two positions so I am relatively certain I got one of them. They were both mainly dealing with updating an online database and also taking some field samples, and other env regulatory information processing.
I was in a giant group interview a looong time ago--I was 15 or 16 years old.
It was for some kind of long-term special event at the Pantages Theater in Hollywood. Basically, my friends told me about the interview, and I just tagged along after school because I lived nearby.
There was literally an auditorium full of teenagers and young adults being interviewed at the same time. I remember it was divided into like 10 sections, and each interviewer was responsible for his own section of interviewees.
Each person only got a chance to answer a couple questions at most. I think I answered one question, and then I was never asked again.
It was chaotic, confusing, and super-awkward. It felt extremely disrespectful to the interviewees, too.