I failed the (behavioral) final interview…why?

I lifted this from www.pinoyexchange.com’s Call Center Forum, from Code_Red16.

Had an interview a week ago. But the interviewer’s question still bugging me. Here: (we’re like talking for half an hour already then she skipped to the final interview, so the behavioral questions started and since I’m a fresh grad, she couldn’t ask me something about my work experience. so for the 1st question she asked me *something like this* instead)

“Tell me a time in your college days when you had a mistake that resulted to a failure for the whole group.”

-I told her several things, like when we didn’t meet the deadline for a project because of me. When we were scolded because of me…pretty usual for her i guess, coz she rejected it all.
-I said that’s all i could think of and the question’s vague and tell her to give me an example. *in the politest way i can*
– Then she said she can’t ask further questions because I couldn’t answer. That means i failed and i can re-apply after a month.

I was like, WTH! What mistake should I have been fabricated for her to be satisfied?! Oh well, the hell i care! I’m still upset tho, knowing that i might encounter the same question again. Help!


My reply:

I’m not sure what preparations you made before the interview but your experience is a classic example of “an unprepared applicant.” Unfortunately, your response, even to me, was unacceptable and will result to an automatic failure.

Behavioral interviews are essential, meaning, recruiters use your past experience in determining what you have done, how you reacted, what were the steps taken, what was the effect, what were your thoughts, the thoughts of others about what happened, and if it was a negative turnout, what have you done to help the situation – saying you have no experience related to the situation means:

1. I have nothing to evaluate you against.
2. I need someone with a previous experience, not necessarily work-related, in order for me to proceed, and eventually tag the person as “trainable” or not (failed).

This is why I keep repeating (in my blog) that an applicant needs to prepare prior to the interview, especially for the behavioral part where the core competencies are effectively measured.

I have had trouble answering behavioral questions when it was first used for call center recruitment, so I hunkered down and took the questions seriously, studied the items measured and wrote answers for them. (Please visit my blog, I wrote an entry there and it can help you.)

Please search the internet for these behavioral questions and prepare responses for them – think of situations, tell the story….And remember the PAR format (someone already made a comment about it here). Remember, too, that you cannot skip a behavioral interview question, you have to answer it even if you have no such experience, again, use the PAR format if you don’t want your response to sound pointless.

Hope this helps.

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