Today: Jun 19, 2024

Thinking outside of the box for the job future


It is pure knowledge that throughout your life, you are going to go through tons of interviews. Some are going to go well, while others are going to absolutely go down the garbage disposal.

Most of the interviews that I have been to thus far have been your basic everyday interviews: “Why do you want this job? Why will you be good for this job? What experience do you have?” Pretty basic and to the point, up until recently. Very recently, actually.

I went into an interview for another internship for the spring semester, finding other people sitting down as well.

I have had a group interview once in my life and that was not the most pleasant experience because everyone is looking at your answers. Not just the people from the corporation who will be deciding if you will get the gig or not, but your possible co-workers and your peers, which anyone would probably shout out an “eek!” at the thought of.

But I walked into the building of my interview and waited, when eventually the interviewer took us all into a boarding room and told us we would all be interviewed together. If that isn’t awkward, wait until what came next.

Your basic question: “Who are you and what do you like about radio? Why radio?” OK, this is an interview.

But then we got thrown through a complete loop. The interviewer said: “OK, I am going to ask you guys a different type of questions now.” OK, I have never been to an interview where someone has said that, so I was automatically kind of nervous.

When you go to an interview you prepare for what is in front of you, the company you are trying to be a part of, no matter what for, and of course the questions that will most likely be asked by the people conducting the interview.

I never thought I would have to prepare for questions such as: “What type of ice cream would you use to best describe you.” Huh? Who asks that? How is this relevant?

One of my professors here at Southern keeps saying to think out of the box. And that thought came to me during this interview. Think out of the box, don’t sit there and think of something cookie cutter. These are not cookie cutter questions. How do you prepare for an interview like this one? You don’t.

Sitting in my seat waiting for the questions to come at me, questions like: “If you where on a desert island and we provided you a house and food, what would you bring with you?”

This was the question that really made me want to run out of the room, because I was the only person who thought outside of the box. There were five people including myself in this interview. The first person said, “An iPod or something.” Second: “A cellphone.” Third and fourth: “computers.”

You probably are wondering what my answer was, and I will tell you. I said “a photograph.” I also said, “Well I can only bring one thing, and all the technological things I could use need power cables, otherwise they die, and I am on a deserted island. I am taking something personal; a photograph.”

They seemed intrigued by the answer, and I think my fellow peers thought I was an idiot. I think I did the right thing. I thought about the layers of the question. It isn’t all about what someone wants to hear– it is about thinking deeper, having answers that are going to set you apart and be different.

I think that is what an employer is looking for.

So while at first I was skeptical about these questions and why they would be asking them, I feel like it makes sense. Who can think outside the box—maybe that is what they wanted to see, or it was just a cruel, sick joke. Who knows?

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