Tag Archives: Interview
So, you applied to a great job and got a call from the recruiter. Thirty minutes later, you nailed the phone screen and he’s setting up an in-person interview with the hiring manager. You’re a huge fan of the company and have high hopes for the job. Until…
How Nice Is Too Nice?
You arrive 15 minutes early and the receptionist tells you the hiring manager is running late. Forty minutes later, she finally strolls out to get you. No apology, but she’s all smiles and gushes about your outfit. She ushers you to her office and the interview begins. She’s full of compliments. Every answer you give is met with praise. She uses the word “love” multiple times, “I love that answer!” and, “I love how you handled that situation at your old employer. That’s EXACTLY what I need here.” The interview continues and the hiring manager is treating you like a long lost friend. When it’s your turn to ask questions, she says she’s blown away by your preparedness. You leave the interview convinced the job is yours. She practically said it was. That’s when you should start to worry. Here’s why…
Don’t Get Seduced By Happy Language
According to studies of narcissists, a good way to spot one is to evaluate their choice of words. It’s important to watch for both extremely positive and extremely negative words, about you or others.
“Extremely positive (seductive) words include: I love you, you’re so wonderful! I’ve never met someone as great as you are! You’re so much better than all the others. You’re the center of my life! I will give you everything you deserve. No one has treated you as good as I will treat you. The person you were with before was a real loser. I have this great idea that will make me really famous someday. Let me tell you about it. (Notice that much of this is very comparative–that’s a warning sign that you will compare negatively later on.)”
In short, studies of narcissists show anyone that nice has the ability to swing to the other extreme – and, likely will.
The Best Managers Use Their Ears More Than Their Mouths in Job Interviews
The best way to tell if a hiring manager will be good to work for is to consider how much he or she listened in the interview. Did they need to monopolize the conversation? Or, did they sit back and give you plenty of time to answer their questions. A good interview should feel like a meaningful conversation, full of two-way dialog that digs into the job requirements and how you can best serve the hiring manager’s needs. Be wary of any job interview that feels light in discussion around your capacity to do the work. If you feel like you didn’t talk enough about your skills and abilities, you should be concerned. Especially, if the conversation was driven (and centered!) around the hiring manager. Ask anyone who has ever worked for a narcissist and they’ll tell you it’s not worth it!
Published on: Aug 31, 2018
Following the recent release of Ikaruga on the Switch, it seems that Yoko Taro cannot contain his enthusiasm for the cult shmup.
Famitsu: What do you like about Ikaruga?
Yoko Taro, superfan: First, I’d like to talk about how the music synchronizes with what is happening on the screen. Iuchi-san, the planner and director of Ikaruga, was also in charge of making the music. Thanks to this, the stage progress matches the music as well. That is one part of what makes Ikaruga amazing. Stage 2’s music starts off with a sense of speed to go along with the opening scene, but as the screen starts scrolling slower, the song goes slower as well. How they mixed music and the sequences together was really groundbreaking, and it left such an impact on me that I stole it for the Nier series.
Famitsu: Has Ikaruga influenced your work in any way?
Yoko Taro: It doesn’t stop at just an influence! In Drakengard, you have magic and non-magic missiles that couldn’t shoot each other down. That is basically Ikaruga. Also, the enemy bullets in the Nier series was also very much influenced by the game. Actually, please write that I stole it, okay? In bold.
Famitsu: Let’s leave it at a homage.
Yoko Taro: Leaving aside my joke… Speaking seriously, Ikaruga influenced how I synchronize the game sequences with the music. Combining the two in a way that appeals to people’s hearts is a task that’s quite difficult. This sort of technique has been a hurdle for developers to overcome since the early days of gaming history, and I think Ikaruga is the first game to actually do it. Because, up until then, BGMs were only split by different scenes in each stage. In that regard, I believe Ikaruga was a game-changer in gaming history.
Famitsu: And you’re saying that’s how the sequences in Nier: Automata came to be.
Yoko Taro: Hmm, I don’t think so. It did have an influence, but I don’t think it was as successful as in Ikaruga. You see, we forced in transformation gimmicks to bosses, and while music rises to fit the moment, that’s just a scripted event, as the developers don’t know when the player will beat the enemy.
In another scene in Nier: Automata, the boss movements match the rhythm of the music, but that was just forcing it so that the movements would follow the length of the music, and not something the players could control in an interactive manner. If it were done properly, the music would increase in fervor when you do massive damage, or something like that where you feel the game via the music. That’s incredibly hard for the creator to control, and something that’s always troubling. But it’s because it’s done so well in Ikaruga that it shines so brightly.
Yoko Taro is known to be rather irreverent, but a lot of these responses are actually quite interesting and shed new light on how much games like Ikaruga have had an impact on his work.
Anyway, now that we have Ikaruga on the Switch it seems that this particular superfan of the game is very happy to play the game again.
Interviews aren’t easy. Trying to make a good impression in a condensed period of time while under pressure makes us all nervous. That’s why preparing for interviews is so vital. Now, more than ever, hiring managers have very high expectations of applicants.
Smart people talk in simple terms.
Studies show people who try to sound important and smart by using long, complex words actually sound less educated and are less respected. The more basic and simply you can speak, the more believable you are. This makes sense. If you have to over-complicate things with a long-winded answer, it can give the impression you are:
None of these are things we wish to convey in a job interview. The solution is to master a three-step process for answering interview questions.
The “experience + learn = grow” model.
Most hiring managers use behavioral questions in interviews. These types of questions require a more-than-one-word answer. The key is to answer with just enough detail, but without going over-the-top. At Work It Daily, we teach job seekers the following format for answering any question concisely.
Experience — Summarize a situation from your past that validates you have the experience they’re looking for.
Learn — Share what the experience taught you.
Grow — Emphasize how you plan to use what you’ve learned to be more valuable to the employer.
For example, if a hiring manager asks, “Tell me about a time when you had to deal with a difficult customer,” you might answer:
“Once, an irate customer called our toll-free line and I answered it. The person had received damaged goods in the mail and was furious. I let him vent his frustration without interruption. When he finally finished, I thanked him for his honesty and apologized for the inconvenience. It was amazing how much his attitude changed when I didn’t try to make excuses. I asked him what he thought would be the best course of action and he suggested having a replacement sent overnight at our expense. I agreed and set it up. By the time we were done, he was complimenting the company on what great customer service we had.”
“What I learned that day is angry customers want to be heard, and focusing on the solution instead of what went wrong is the key to success.”
“Now, I’d like to use this knowledge, along with some of the other valuable customer-service lessons I gained at my last job to help exceed your customers’ expectations as well.”
See how easy it is to concisely convey your expertise when you follow this format?
P.S. — Asking questions is as important as answering them.
The best interviews are a two-way dialog. You should leave feeling like you had a meaningful conversation with the hiring manager. To do this, job seekers must also prepare questions to ask in the interview. Knowing how to sound well-spoken is only half of the equation. You also need to know how to appear engaged and excited about the role. The questions you ask can help you connect more deeply with the hiring manager and leave a stronger impression.