How to answer difficult interview questions

Question

Remember that moment?  Face to face with an established professional who is carefully scrutinizing your dress, your language, your facial expressions, and all of a sudden, you’re asked one of “those” questions:  what would you do during a zombie apocalypse? Or, how about this:  how long are you willing to stick out a job before you quit?  You start to shake and sweat starts to bead on your forehead; you tap the depths of your brain for the right thing to say.. assuming, of course, you want that job…with that type of thinking.

horrible-job-interview-questions-0-CopyThis dialogue connects you with resources to answer these and other types of wacky, weird, strange, bizarre and other out-of-the-box questions otherwise designed to assess your “quick on the feet,” critical-thinking skills. To accomplish this goal, we’ve listed some questions and links to the answers given by notable (okay, we really have no idea) respondents.

Here are our favorite questions with a recommended response:

  • What do you think you will hate about this job?

Really?  How do you answer this type of question?  You can’t be a Pollyanna in front of your potential employer or else they may think you don’t have a realistic grip on the real-world.   So, what does work?  While we job-interview_blog-300x149can’t predict what you aren’t going to like about any job, use this question to respond based on what you know about yourself and what you know about the job.  For example, it can be assumed that if you are applying for a job at The Gap, and you plan to be in sales, you probably shouldn’t answer this question that you hate people.  Unless you really hate working with people, in which case you should not be applying for this job.  Another example: you are applying for a job that requires a lot of travel and you say that you hate to drive or fly.

A better way to answer this question is to be honest: state that you are sure there will be things that you like more than other (use positive emotional attractors).  Restate what you know about the position that attracted you to apply. This question gives you an opportunity to show that you’ve done your homework and understand the expectations of this position.

  • If you could be any type of animal, what would you be?

This is a potential employers attempt to not use the Myers-Briggs personality assessment when they really want to. So, what do you do? This is another opportunity to promote your strengths and to downplay your weaknesses (see additional questions below) in alignment with what you know about the job.  For example, if you are applying for an engineering job, saying that you are a peacock likely isn’t going to mesh as peacocks are noted for their showy, bright and self-centered personalities whereas engineers more interview 2closely resemble an intelligent owl: quiet, reserved, speaks up when necessary only.

  • What are your greatest weaknesses?

The big pitfall here is that a zillion sites will tell you to take a strength and sell it as a weakness.  This really doesn’t pass the sniff test as most interviewers are not fooled by this strategy.  Gut check: if you don’t believe the answer you are about to give to an interviewer, they won’t either.  To move this into a realistic direction, have a short answer that doesn’t lead to more details.  Be truthful, explain how you are trying to improve and be willing to answer questions about your greatest weaknesses.  Oh yeah – by the way, we all have more than one.  Do your research about the job and the company and wrap your response to this question about something relevant to the job or organization.  Don’t eliminate yourself from the candidate pool right off the bat by offering a weakness that doesn’t jive with the needs of the organization.  For example, if your greatest weakness is that you don’t have high attention to detail, you probably aren’t suited to apply for a quality inspector position.

confused young business woman posing with a clipboardNow you try:  here are some of our favorite questions that we really couldn’t answer:

  • What would you do in the event of a zombie apocalypse?
  • Why is a man-hole cover round?

There really is no single “right” or “best” answer as all of these types of questions are intended to evaluate your critical thinking skills, most often in direct correlation to the nature of the job you are trying to land.  For example, a question about the zombie apocalypse could equally evaluate your creativity as well as your ability to respond to chaos.  This may be important if, for example, you are applying for a job where chaos reigns or you are expected to dress mannequins for Hallowe’en.

For other weird and bizarre questions, here are some additional resources:

Weird and wacky interview questions

More from Glassdoor

Tough Nickel answers

 

 

 

 

FLASH! PETA SHUTS DOWN POKEMON GO EVENTS IN PORTLAND, OREGON!

Pokemon Go BallThe controversial organization, PETA (Protection for Equivalent Theoretical Animals), has managed to rally citizen support to protest and block several Pokémon Go events scheduled in Portland, Oregon, on the basis that monsters qualify as “theoretical animals” and that Seekers, in pursuit of points, status and otherwise basic irrational and illogical storytelling opportunities, will resort to irrational, illogical and virtual fantasy activities as they prey on innocent virtual creatures unable to defend themselves.

LET OUR POKEMON GO GO!   jail pokemon

Signs of Pokémon Go monsters contained in squalid cages and fed items with virtually no substance are popping up everywhere. Worse, in a demonstration of how low seekers will fall, “monster-fights” reminiscent of the dog fights that got old basketball players almost arrested have been seen in the back alleys of one of America’s greatest cities.  The conditions are perceived as horrible, with poor monsters gripping bars and crying out for their families.  In a worst-case situation, a baby monster was separated from its mother before it could flee its hunters.

pokemon#2Other groups attempting to capitalize on the event have even started a “slave labor” camp for captured monsters, selling them on Craig’s List for virtual bucks.  Enslaved monsters are expected to ensure harsh working conditions while captors and seekers seduced into this unsavory world go out in pursuit of even more monsters.  It’s an awful situation as wild and carefree monsters are struck down in the middle of their natural habitat, with little time to defend themselves from the “slaying ball” that is used to swipe them away.  As one concerned citizen reported, Pokémon Go monsters are even starting to show up in  historically human red light districts.  Poor PokemonRepublicans across the country are in an uproar as questions of equality for animals and citizens’ concern for these imaginary creatures takes priority over what they have long considered to be a more important agenda while Democrats are looking to expand universal health care programs to include Pokemom Go Monster Dads, Moms and kids alike.

GETTING EVEN

As the Pokémon Go phenomenon has exponentially accelerated in the last few days, pokemon fieldreports of Seekers getting creamed is also increasing, to include (most recently) a group in Salem, Oregon that found themselves standing in the middle of Liberty Street in the front of the firehouse, trying to climb up the fireman’s pole in search of an evasive and illusive creature.  Seems that Seekers may not be using a lot “upstairs” as they look for PokeStops and through Lures out to grab yet another poor, defenseless monster.  But, the monsters are starting to get creative and gang up on Seekers.

In yet another unreported incident, four ridiculously cute monsters threw their own “lure” out to catch a few unsuspecting Seekers.  Using the guise of a broken paw, one monster lay await in a green circle as the Seekers approached.  Just as the swipe of the ball was about to happen, three other monsters ran out and jumped on top of the Seekers, scaring the bejeezus out of them, causing them to lose their phone and of course, their corresponding identity. (Anyone looking for a Samsung XII should call the local authorities).   It’s only a matter of time before massive uprisings between man and beast lead us all to lock ourselves in our shelters and wait to see who wins.

RELEASE OUR POKEMON GO!

PETA, founded by M.N Sterious, an 84 year old member of the Portland community, is dedicated to the protection of virtual reality of any form.  M.N. Sterious planned and coordinated the Portland Pokémon Go blockade using age-old wisdom combined with helpful hints from Google search engine.  Demands for a release of all caged Pokémon Go monsters must be met before the blockades are removed.   As in all things fantastical, the PETA group has staged a virtual hunger strike with hopes to gain attention of those who are oblivious to this ridiculous condition.   It certainly grasped this author’s attention!

For more information on PETA, look no further.  You won’t find anything anyway.  Meanwhile, stay OFF THE STREETS, OUT OF TREES, AWAY FROM FIREHOUSES…oh yeah – all that advice assumes people are using their heads when playing this game.  That’s where we went wrong!

Socially Sorted: Hints, tips and techniques to help WIN this DMC

And we’re off!  The 2016 Willamette MBA Pro DMC (Digital Marketing Challenge) is underway with fierce competition that spans the valley and teams dedicated to becoming #1.  But, how will they do this? Read on to find out, especially if you are interested in having your post solicit others to do your work for you (after all, aren’t we earning MBAs to figure out how to optimize resources?).

Capture blog 3

Donna Moritz gives MBA Candidates a plethora of suggestions and strategies that are worth a try.  @SociallySorted, who herself has 33.2K (yes, read that THOUSAND!) Followers and 48.2K (DITTO!) Tweets, offers seven real-world and timely (in light of our Marketing Class Professor’s content) techniques for driving your market strategy directly into the line of your customer or potential reader’s eyes.

If you are a visual person (which a lot of us are), consider theCapture blog2 first tip to pin tweets to Twitter profiles.  Imagine getting twice the amount of eyes on your words with a few quick steps! Building on this strategy, a second tip is to create and post some amazingly interesting image that people just can’t resist.  Images that capture the imagination, take us to our Avatar or Pokemon Go sites are sure to encourage repeat tweets and pins.  As with other sections of this blog, @SociallySorted provides options on accomplishing this (check it out!).  One really cool aspect of these options is the brief discussion of tools that can help make pinning and tweeting even easier (Shutterstock Editor or Relay, as examples). Donna’s fifth suggestion (GOTCHA! yes, this is written out of order) expounds on optimizing images or blogs for links or posts to Facebook, again with a few options. Option 6 provides similar advice for Instagram.  Apokemon cagen interesting experience was we were writing this blog:  in an attempt to make this blog relevant and timely, thought we would inject images of the latest Pokemon Go craze to support our attempts at satire.  So, astutely, we entered “Pokemon Cages” in the search line on Google, which gave us animated images of Pokemon with Nicholas Cage’s face on them.  So, if using any of these image-based recommendations, use caution.

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MBA Candidates world around should take heed of Donna’s third tip: post your blog to your business page! In our class last night, one of our team members is a Willamette U employee and she encouraged us to use our Willamette U MBA page!  What an awesome idea that confirms Donna’s recommendation! (Have you done this yet?)  Of course, from here, it’s easy to leap to LinkedIn, Facebook and other popular sites.

For all the YouTube crazies out there, @SociallySorted includes recommendations for a short video or Facebook Live (and all this time I thought those folks were fictional!).  Too cool for those of us who still remember Super 8! (Okay, how many of you reading this know – or remember – Super 8?)  And last but not least, Suggestion Seven explain
s how to set up Twitter Cards, complete with examples of the process to help even the most luddite of us perform this task.

Donna’s siCapture pic 7te is easy and quick to read, contains a zillion (yes, I counted them – an even, round ZILLION) links and helpful step-by-step details for improving your chances of winning this competition.   Digging in, she encourages folks to use and share site content, which just made us appreciate this content further. So much for the Endowment Effect.

For those of you who are simply admiring all the chaos the competitive classes in this competition have created, one of the coolest things about Donna’s 7 Ways to Effortlessly Drive More Blog Readers with Visuals site is how encouraging it is: these tips lead you to believe even YOU can do this!

We were sure fooled into believing it!

So, have fun, check out the links, let us know your thoughts and read on for the next adventures in the 2016 WUDMC!

Livin’ like the Clampetts or Kardashians

There is an age-old debate regarding camping: do you live on the camping on a hotel picwild-side for a week, sans H2O and all the other assumed comforts of home, or do you take home on wheels wherever you go?  Add to that whether or not you live on chile,  hot dogs, and a six-pack of  “America”,  or do you do the full glamping, complete with breakfast mimosas and evening cocktails?  This site will debate the pros, cons and everything between watching Kevin Durrant and Steph Curry on your satellite receiver in front of your gas fireplace to watching the sunset over a remote lake where nature’s sports field invites you to play.

Camping genres fall into a few basic segments:

Dry Camping

This is the type of camping often associated with backwoodsmen or backpackers.  backpackerWhile living in the wild, aka “backwoods lifestyles” are not explored in this post, dry camping is not limited to backpacks and tents, and includes the use of RVs where spouses limit the convenience of water, power, gas and other essential facilities in the spirit of getting to be one with nature.

Backpacking in remote wildernesses is an extreme form of dry camping where you carry everything you need  in a 50# bag on your back and walk seemingly aimlessly on narrow trails in frontiers that no man may have gone before. “Leave no trace” typically guides the backpacker’s experience of limited waste of any sort.  That’s right:  you pack out, burn or bury anything you bring in…and we do mean anything.

And then there’s the food.  Freeze-dried MREs made famous by the military have found a new fan-base in the backpacking and dry camping communities.  That’s because they weigh nothing, take up little space and are reported to have just the same amount of flavor as if you had cooked it in your own home.  Right.  Gin and Tonics have no place in a dry camping world, or do they?

What’s your experience with dry camping?  What is the craziest place you’ve gone and the best (or worst) food you’ve made?  How long did you enjoy camping before you gave it up and got real?

Traditional tent camping

Best typified by Yogi the Bear, his best friend BooBoo, and cheerful guide Ranger Rick, tendry campt-camping has long been a favorite past-time of young and adventurous families. Traditional camping involves finding campgrounds where likeminded individuals come together to live remotely in a natural environment, becoming temporary best friends around a campfire.  This seems somewhat ironic considering that in today’s world, fewer and fewer people can’t even manage to even learn their neighbors first names.

Food is a step up over dry camping but still relegated to Spaghetti-Os, canned beans and hot dogs.  And never, ever, forget the can opener as too many tent camping experiences come to an abrupt end when futile attempts to open cans with knives, rocks, and profanity lead to early trips to the emergency room.

For those of you who have stepped up to tent camping, share your happiest experience including where you went, any lingering friendships created, and even the trips to the emergency room.  Don’t forget to include tips and suggestions on food and feel free to share “what not tos” that we should all consider before embarking on this type of adventure.

For more information on tent camping, check this out: http://www.reserveamerica.com or www.traveloregon.com.

RVing, aka “glamping”  

About RVing:  look, when you get home from work after a 40 hour plus week, do you really want to cram everything you might need into two plastic totes and a cooler, and jam it into the backseat of your car and then head out, find a spot (good luck if you don’t have a reservation!)  and strike a tent?  Or, does the tease of a dry martini served in a martini glass (as opposed to a red Solo cup- aimed at the Shoppers – whoops!  Wrong projecglamping with mary janet!) with a grilled steak on the barbe lead you to question your thinking?  RVers have it figured out: home on wheels, everything at the ready so that when you get home after work, you just hook up and leave and presto, you can pull over in any (almost) legal spot and have an instant campsite with the push of a few buttons.  Hey, in today’s technology driven world, why not?

And then there’s the food. They say a picture says 1000 words…. well, this one tells400-beach-seafood-and-tap-house-food-spread the whole story. Imagine steak and potatoes for dinner, a fresh salad and of course, dessert that includes more than S’mores.  Follow that up with fresh eggs and bacon in the morning, your favorite toast, and of course, the famous mimosa!  All easy to do when you have a full refrigerator, oven and stove, and sink at your fingertips.

Curious about the RV lifestyle?  www.goRVing.com allows you to compare trailers and figure out what you really want when considering taking your home on wheels with you, like a turtle.

Wrapping it up, we really want to hear from you with your favorite and funny camping stories, especially if it’s about food.  And, if you’re curious about camping as a recreational adventure,  here are a few resources to explore:

Camping with children

Basic gear and equipment needed

Food on the go