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How to be great at interviews

Interviews: These are needed for progression in just about everything. I can guarantee you that at
some point in your life you will need to attend an interview: And you will need to be great at it. All
throughout your life, whether you want a job, promotion within a job, admission to a university, or
even if on a date (simlar to an interview, but see my date-specific information) then this handy
guide, containing typical interview questions and essential technique, will be invaluable to you. So,
to start off...

Typical questions:
Interviewers will ask you all sorts of things about your skills, qualities, experiences and outlook. Do
you have any idea what the difference between a 'skill' and a 'quality' is? No? That's because they're
buzzwords with almost no relevance to the job that you are applying for, and are used as a way of
trying to form poor, approximate structures of similarity between two or more subjectively different
applicants in order to vaguely compare them to each other.

It's a laziness on the part of the employer to be able to bureaucratically assign someone with a
'Managing qualification' to interview you for a job that, as a 'manager', he knows nothing about.

So, how can you exploit this general laziness? Easy;


For example (The buzzwords are in bold to show you how important they are, and stress each bold
word as you say it for the correct 'interview-speak'):

Q.) What skills do you think you possess?

A.) Well, I think I am a good communicator, and from this stems my drive to cooperate with
others around me and contribute to the team ethic in a pro-active way. I also believe that I am
proficient at analysing and assessing issues that bear relevance to the working environment and
implementing my solutions in an efficient way.

Oh yeah. That's one sexy answer. You'll have noticed that almost every noun, verb, adjective and
adverb in there was a buzzword. In fact, looking at the answer without buzzwords we get:

A.) Well, I think I am a good BLANK, and from this BLANKS my BLANK to BLANK with
others around me and BLANK to the BLANK BLANK in a BLANK-BLANK way. I also believe

Exactly. Let's try another question,and see what sort of answer fits this time:

Q.) Do you believe yourself to be a team player?

A.) Well, I think I am a good communicator, and from this stems my drive to cooperate with
others around me and contribute to the team ethic in a pro-active way. I also believe that I am
proficient at analysing and assessing issues that bear relevance to the working environment and
implementing my solutions in an efficient way.

Exactly. Learn a few buzzy sentences (Or, as in this case, ONE buzzy sentence) and simply roll it
off when needed.

Outcome: The job is yours, with one provisio:


The above illustration shows that it is possible to use the same Buzz-word-full answer to respond to
almost any question, but learn a few such sentences, along with a few of the connecting phrases, in
order to ace those interviews every time.

"I believe that I can achieve an operational workload while not losing sight of my strategic

Translation: "I can do little things without forgetting about the big things." - kind of obvious for any
one with more than one brain cell, but interviewers like to hear this kind of over-worked way of
saying something obvious.

And remember, to manager types everything is a "goal" or "targets" or "in sight" or some crap like
that. If you haven't mentioned "goals"at least half a dozen times in the interview then you aren't
pro-active enough.

"I have a wide skill base, which encompasses aspects of both team interaction and individual
goal pursuit."

Always stress that you are a team player with initiative. Don't say "I'm a mindless drone who does
what he's told. Nothing more or less." and, equivalently, don't say "Team work? Fuck that." What
the interviewer wants to hear is that you can work in a team and on your own simultaneously- he
wants to know that you have personal synergy. Remember to say...

"I strive to use synergy as a method for linking personal goal in the tasks I perform, no matter
how varied."

And try;

"My multi-tasking skills are useful in performing tasks in a regimented and effective way."

and remember to "Take things on board."

Notice that any of the previous statements answers any of the following questions (Give or take a
couple of tweaks in some cases, but you can't expect me to spoon-feed you all of the answers that
you'll need.):
Q.) Why do you think you are well-suited for this job?
Q.) Would you say that your person specification compliments the job specification?
Q.) What is your main strength?
... etc, etc, etc...

...Ad nauseum. Essentially, they ask you some half-baked question that actually asks very little
about YOU and you make some (equally half-baked) answer up before-hand to fend off the

And (this is he amazing thing) the interviewer will be impressed at your answer. Mad world...

Body language:

This doesn't have to be very hard. Sit straight, make eye contact and don't look shifty. Apparently
this is easier said than done for some people, who automatically seem to generate a 'I'm-going-to-
steal-the-office-stationery-if-you-leave-me-unsupervised' kind of aura. Remember to smile and
gently laugh at any small joke the interviewer makes about the weather/ the interview process/ your
choice of clothes/ etc. Unless he disses you, in which case administer a 4pps. Naturally

During the interview you should:

1.) Nod along with the interviewer's questions.

2.) Use emphatic hand actions in your answers.

3.) Look really serious about your amazingly fake answers to the interviewer's questions.


If you get stuck on a question then simply use this phrase:

"I believe that my answer to this question links back to what I was saying about my Skills/
Qualities/ Experience. As I said..." then simply repeat a segment of a previous answer about team-
work, independent initiative or "my skill base".

Trust me, the interviewer won't even notice. He's looking out for buzzwords, not actual intelligent
content in your answer.

If you are not naturally great then it could be the case that you will manage to screw up and the
interviewer will notice that you are simply memorising phrases. If so, tough for you. You should
have spoken with more conviction.

However, as a last ditch attempt to rescue yourself you can always try this:

"I am sorry that you feel that way, but this is my normal mode of speech and register for interviews.
I am trying to convey to you an impression of the skills I possess in this way because I believe it to
be an appropriate interview manner." (And try to sound slightly offended)

If the interviewer disagrees with you this time then you are REALLY screwed. However, he may
say "I see." and write something on a bit of paper. What he has written is "Arrogant cock." and you
won't get the job. He may say "Ah, right..." and in THAT case you may get the job. But tone down
the buzzwords from then on. Don't mention your Personal Synergy, for instance, or your
Evaluative qualities, as the interviewer will definitely realise that you're talking crap. However, If
the interviewer says "Admirable, admirable." Then you should insert more buzzwords, as that is
what he wants to hear. Use compound buzzwords, such as Personal-Evaluation-synergy and
Predictive-Forward-Thinking-Initiative-Quality, if you think you can get away with it.

Anyway, the main thing to bear in mind is that buzzwords are the key to this sort of thing, and you
can probably get jobs that you are dangerously underqualified for off the back of about half a dozen
snappy words.

And when you do, congratulations. I'll be expecting 10% of your ludicrously high, undeserved
salary. Not that I need it, you understand. I deserve it, though.

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