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  #1  
Old 24 March 2020, 20:31
Jim1348 Jim1348 is offline
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Interview Questions

I missed a telephone call today, but I did get this e-mail earlier today.

I have done interviews in the past, but this will be my first interview in a long time that isn't in person. I have done a couple of telephone interviews several years back.

Anyway, I am looking for tips and opinions. My general gut reaction is to install Zoom in advance and make sure I am comfortable with it ahead of time. I am also inclined to wear a suit, be clean shaven, etc. I am also going to do my best to not have any distractions in the room where I do this. In the past few days I have learned from others what not to do.

I have seen some people use headphone/earbuds, but I would rather not use those, if I don't have to. What other things should I be thinking about in preparation for a "virtual" interview?


"Good afternoon James,

Thank you for your application for the Director of Xxxxxx position at Xxxx Xxxxx. This e-mail is a follow-up to the voicemail left for you earlier today.

The interview committee would like to invite you for an 50 minute interview. The interviews will be held via Zoom and/or phone, due to COVID-19 and social distancing. Below are the available time slots. Please indicate your top three preferences. Once we have received your preferences we will confirm via email and send additional information regarding the interview."
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Old 24 March 2020, 20:52
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If it’s video and you have kids, make sure one of them does not barge in on you like that dude on British news.

If it goes off by phone instead of Zoom, smile while you are talking into the phone. May feel weird, but it makes a difference on the receiving end.

Good luck.
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  #3  
Old 24 March 2020, 20:58
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Human nature is that the interviewer will be distracted by other shit happening on their computer during the interview, so make sure your answers are clear, crisp, and not long winded to maintain their attention.
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Old 24 March 2020, 21:10
Stretch Stretch is offline
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I agree. Install zoom AND test it with a friend who was or will get it.

Show up to the “interview” the same way you would in person: aka: dress for position for which you are interviewing. If you normally bring paper copies of your cover letter and resume, do that.

And yes, set a neutral “office” type space. Farting dogs, hair balling cats, and kidding yelling DAAAaaad are bad... :D.

Good luck,

S

What position is your retired LEO self trying to obtain?

Last edited by Stretch; 24 March 2020 at 21:13. Reason: What position...
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  #5  
Old 24 March 2020, 22:23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimbo View Post
If it goes off by phone instead of Zoom, smile while you are talking into the phone. May feel weird, but it makes a difference on the receiving end.

Good luck.
Along these lines, sit upright in a solid chair. You can tell the difference in someone's voice.

Good luck.
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Old 25 March 2020, 09:18
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If you have an opportunity to test out Zoom in advance, do it during the same time of the day as your interview so you can take note of your lighting and adjust accordingly.

To the earlier made point of neutral office space, take a critical look at your room and remove any objects that can cause controversy (so, no NRA posters, no hunting trophies, no skulls of your enemies, et cetera). People get "offended" at all kinds of stuff these days, and you do not need to lose any points.

Best of luck!
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  #7  
Old 25 March 2020, 09:42
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remember:

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  #8  
Old 25 March 2020, 10:14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MountainBum View Post
Human nature is that the interviewer will be distracted by other shit happening on their computer during the interview, so make sure your answers are clear, crisp, and not long winded to maintain their attention.
This, but also answer the question asked, not the one you want to answer. Save those comments for the end when they ask you would like to say anything else. Finally, be prepared, personable, and friendly, but not informal. In most cases, the interview is about whether you can fit into the team as a person, and not whether you have the skills.
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Old 25 March 2020, 20:34
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I sat in on a couple job interview recently...and they were stark contrasts...one guy simply did not answer what was asked..he rambled and I really don't know what the heck he said. He didn't get the job.
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  #10  
Old 25 March 2020, 21:43
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There is a youtube channel called "charisma on command" I would suggest delving into some of those titles. Social cues and strategies can move you far ahead of more technical or experienced competion assuming you are basically qualified for the job.
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  #11  
Old 27 March 2020, 14:03
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All good advice above. As P36 mentioned, do not ramble about bullshit. I have done or been on a fair amount of committee interviews. As mentioned above, be personable, smile on the serious side and connect with your panel if possible. Obviously you are going to talk about your: education, how it relates, experience you have (in years and companies) that relates to the position (practice that), etc. Lastly, when asked a question where you have to give an example: Formulate your response in the format of: 1) The scenario you were involved/led, 2) what action you/team took, 3) and what was the outcome. Pausing is fine. Good luck.
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  #12  
Old 31 March 2020, 12:13
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Use an external camera and place the it 36 inches from your torso and down 12 from your chin. Make sure you're not backed up to a wall. Then, from whatever software you're using, zoom in and frame it to your shoulders up. The depth of field and perspective will give you a more commanding presence. Use the tech to your advantage
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  #13  
Old 31 March 2020, 13:34
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I have never done a remote interview- I don't think I'd like it. It'd be harder to figuratively get up and stir the interviewers drink with your dick as I like to do in these things.

All in all- less is more. Don't go on at length about things- be clear and concise. Then when they are done with you- interview THEM about their company, in detail.
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Old 31 March 2020, 14:26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GirlwithaGlock View Post
no NRA posters, no hunting trophies, no skulls

Unless youre interviewing with me lol...

I very intentionally hung both an impala and a wildebeest skull on the wall behind me in my office.. so that they are viewed right in the middle of the screeen when I'm teleconferencing...

It sets a certain "tone" with other parties


I'll be in a new office next week.. I still havent figured out what Im going to do.. the way the new office is set up, there is a big, arched window immediately behind the desk.. there is no wall space for taxidermy..

I might have to resort to putting the ceramic hound back on my desk that has his leg hiked up like he is pissing.. I used to keep the dog facing the chairs on the other side of my desk so that when people would come in and take a seat, they would be sitting 12" away, and staring at a set of dog balls..

People usually stayed only for a minute or two.. I never had to endure very long meetings back then
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Old 31 March 2020, 16:03
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If you're going to do it on video, sanitize the background as well as yourself.

It had been so long since I'd put them up there that it never even occurred to me that there was a 50 BMG round, a coon cock, and a bikini pic of my wife on the bookshelves behind my desk.

I policed that stuff up before I had to do it a second time.
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  #16  
Old 31 March 2020, 16:08
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Some good advice in this thread.

Be conscious of where the camera is. Don't have it too low or too close. It's annoying and no one wants to look up your nose.

Have a plan to take notes like you would if you were in person.
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  #17  
Old 31 March 2020, 18:41
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We had a Zoom meeting yesterday, probably the first web-type for the majority of us. It’s not difficult. I logged in early and figured the features/commands...

Make sure to get your sound/speaker/microphone squared away. A lot of guys couldn’t hear or be heard.

I would do the video, not the call in, if they give you the option. As stated, how you present yourself is important.

S
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  #18  
Old 31 March 2020, 21:45
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A little different. My very close friend, USSS, just retired, became Dir of Security, large city school system. Fell right in his lap.
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Last edited by CAP MARINE; 31 March 2020 at 21:45. Reason: M
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  #19  
Old 16 May 2020, 19:02
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I have one of these coming up on Tuesday for a position I REALLY want. There's definitely some great info in this thread. Jim - I hope yours went well, and if anyone has anything to add, I'm all ears! I'm prepping a cheat sheet for the "usual" questions as we speak.
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  #20  
Old 16 May 2020, 20:46
Jim1348 Jim1348 is offline
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Interview Questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
...Jim - I hope yours went well, and if anyone has anything to add, I'm all ears!...
Well, I was not selected, so I guess that means it didn't go well, but I do appreciate your kind thoughts anyway.

It was the first and only time that I have ever done an interview on Zoom. I must say that it was interesting, though, For all of the requirements listed, I met all of the minimum and all of the preferred, except one, if I recall correctly. They really didn't ask about any of that, though. They basically asked me a lot of questions about diversity and inclusiveness. For example, what have you done in your past job(s) to promote diversity? There were so many of those questions about diversity and inclusiveness, that for a moment I thought that I had applied for a diversity job by mistake!

Yeah, I get how people reading this are going to think "sour grapes" and they might be right. At 59 years old, I am probably considered to be way too old by many organizations. All I know is when, or if, I ever apply for any other government jobs, I am really going to study up on diversity and inclusiveness before the interviews!
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