We are in desperate need of quality art directors here at the House of Biz and have been interviewing candidates non-stop all week. So far, to no avail.
Yesterday afternoon I was asked to sit with a candidate who had been referred by a friend of one of the partners. Though he came from a promotions background and his work was only so-so, we need hands on deck. And he was recommended.
God knows why.
The first tip for interviewing: do NOT passionately tell your interviewer about all of the people who have fucked you in your career.
Sure, we have all had people along the way on whose evil ways we could discourse for hours (like Jane Sample). But that is for your own personal time, not for an interview. Not only does it make me think that you have no self-control, do not know what is appropriate in a business setting and that you are overly-emotional, I also start to think, as the number of people you are listing piles up, that maybe the issue is with you.
The second tip for interviewing: if you have been fired by your last agency, say only what you have to about what happened.
Fifteen minutes spent discoursing about how the account team didn’t fight for your work hard enough and management didn’t support you and the client was an idiot is not making me think that you would be a good addition to this team. It makes me think that you need some sort of medication.
The third tip for interviewing: when asked about difficult clients you have had to deal with, tell me about one that turned out okay, not the one that got you fired.
Interestingly, this guy had worked on (at the promotions agency) the same QSR client that I had worked on a while back (at the ad agency). This QSR client was extremely challenging and was the worst work experience of my life. But I didn’t get fired because I couldn’t handle it. And anyway, I want to know that you can handle a difficult client since, sorry, you are going to have more than one in your life. I don’t want to know that you couldn’t stand the heat while I could. Not a good way to sell yourself.
The fourth tip for interviewing: be ready to talk about ads and campaigns that you like.
The key here is things that YOU like. Do not repeat back to me ads and campaigns that I may have mentioned earlier in the interview. Do not blow smoke up my ass by mentioning things that you saw in the lobby and know that I worked on. It will not overcome the fact that you freaked out and word vomited your anger at past employers all over me.
This guy broke these four key rules so badly that it makes me question the quality of the shops that employed him.
I wonder if he was on drugs.