The Interview Before the Interview
Often we think a job interview consists of the answers given to a series of questions from a committee or building administrator. There is an interview that happens even before you walk into the conference room or office that too often candidates overlook. The impressions you make on the students and office staff can impact the decision as to whether or not a candidate is a good fit for a school. Being personable, approachable and aware of those in the room is an indicator of the presence you will have in the school community. I recall an interviewee at my school that was somewhat standoffish with the office staff, did not speak to the maintenance personnel and barely addressed the principal when he came in dressed casually. Her demeanor completely changed when she was introduced to him as the principal and one who would be interviewing her. Unfortunately, her previous interactions with him and his staff spoke volumes and thus cost her the position. Conversely your willingness to take the time to acknowledge the office staff, remain approachable with students who may be in the office and connect with others are good indicators that you have those "people" skills which will translate into positive interactions with parents, students and other staff members. Think about the best customer service experience you have had and what made it so. What did you learn from that experience that you will take into your classroom, into your interactions with parents and into your interactions with other staff members? Remember, ours is a customer service profession. Let all aspects of the interview experience reflect this.
Tracey Grant, Director of Human Resources
Cherry Creek School District