What I learned sitting in the lobby!

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by want2teachsoon, Sep 15, 2013.

  1. want2teachsoon

    want2teachsoon Rookie

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    Sep 15, 2013

    Finally I got a call for a job interview, went back for the 2nd one and we talked for 1.5 hours about the details. I am going back to sign the contract Tuesday. I have been out of work for over 2 years. Before I went in for the interview I read several articles about general job interviews and teacher interviews.
    I read that people interviewing do not want to see dull colors up near your face because you look depressing. I wore a medium pink sweater over a blouse and it was young looking. I had my hair cut and styled, new high heels and new pants. I wore high heels because I have read that people like to hire taller candidates and I am only 5"1' applying for a high school position.
    When I walked into the lobby I at first thought I was in the wrong place because the other women sitting there looked so depressing and dumpy. They were interviewing for the same position. One looked extremely uncomfortable in a very tight suit type dress with tan pantyhose on in 90 degree humid weather. The woan speaking to me had a black/grey wrap around dress and her hair was very greasy. While both these women were nice people they both came off as desperate and depressing. Why would someone want to hire them?
    While people in the past have told me to wear a suit or jacket I have not because I would never teach in that and I would feel uncomfortable. I think the article I read gave good advice about looking good and being noticed. I think it helps a lot to look attractive. I think it helped me a great deal and I did get a second interview and job offer. When my husband has gone to job interviews I have told him not to wear a white shirt because everyone else does. He wore a blue shirt and a nice tie and he got the job.
    At the end of the interview when I was asked if I had any questions I replied by saying,"At my old school I always helped students after school and during my lunch hour. Would you be open to me doing this again?" They were shocked that I wanted to work for free. In reality I can't do that often but it made me appear to be a hard worker.
    I hope this can help someone out!
     
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  3. ayla

    ayla Companion

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    Sep 16, 2013

    At my old school you were definitely expected to help after school and during lunch, and one interview I went on was honest that they expected this of their teachers. My current school does expect after school but not lunch.
    I think more important than bright colors is a bright personality.
     
  4. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Sep 16, 2013

    Congrats to both you and your husband.

    I agree that looking bright and cheerful will help set you apart from other qualified candidates. Probably more important, if you FEEL bright and cheerful, you're more likely to be comfortable during the interview and let your best YOU shine forth.
     
  5. ready2learn

    ready2learn Comrade

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    Sep 16, 2013

    Congratulations!

    I am not doubting that how one looks can help or hurt a candidate. I think it does. However, I am sure that there is something the interview team saw in you other than just your outward appearance that made them hire you!
     
  6. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Sep 16, 2013

    Congrats on the job!
     
  7. isabunny

    isabunny Comrade

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    Sep 16, 2013

    Congrats and thanks for the awesome advice. Can you post a link to the article you read or can you give the name of the book? I would love to read it. Sounds like great advice that I haven't come across in all the online articles I have read about job interviews.
     
  8. vsimpkins

    vsimpkins Comrade

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    Sep 16, 2013

    Article

    I would love to read it too!!!
     
  9. want2teachsoon

    want2teachsoon Rookie

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    Sep 16, 2013

    I have been trying for a while to find the article on dressing to stand out. I have found that the advice from looking for a general career and non teaching websites are more helpful than teaching sites. I have read also that when asked about your weaknesses to put the answer back into your personal life. I am not good at practicing for job interviews and know that I have to practice in my head a lot. Without reading articles on what questions to ask at the end of a job interview I would not have thought to ask about working during my lunch hour. The people interviewing want someone who will make them look good. I have worked with and have met a ton of lazy teachers who put in no extra work but somehow still have their jobs. I have learned after years and years of using the Applitrak applications that you more than likely won't get a call. The job offer I just received was from a district that had me email a resume and copy of my cert. I applied back in July. I know that there are not many non Applitrak apps out there but look for them anyway. Be patient and if you have experience be willing to take a pay cut. A relative by marriage in North Jersey told me that districts often hire career changers who did a fast track program to get certified because they have more world experience and can start on Step 1 of the pay scale. How fair is that to new grads and to people who have experience? One last piece of advice....I have never been hired before school starts in my entire life.
     
  10. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Sep 16, 2013

    You never have a second chance to make a first impression.
     
  11. Milsey

    Milsey Habitué

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    Sep 16, 2013

    There is nothing bad about looking good!
     
  12. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Sep 16, 2013

    Unless that's all you have to offer. First impressions quickly fade if not backed up with experience, intelligence, know how, compassion and interest in the success of students. It's about presenting a total Package, not just a pretty face.
     
  13. MissPapa

    MissPapa Comrade

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    Sep 16, 2013

    I always say that I make myself available. Nothing wrong with that!
     
  14. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Sep 16, 2013

    I really don't think that wearing a pink shirt instead of a grey one is going to be the difference in getting a job or not. :sorry:
     
  15. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Sep 17, 2013

    No, but it might make a difference in your outlook, and help enable you to give a better interview. Anything that pushes you a bit out of your shell, that makes you feel more confident and capable and professional, can't hurt.

    Kind of a placebo effect, but it couldn't hurt.
     
  16. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Sep 17, 2013

    Actually, clothing does make a difference in first impression. As a hiring manager, it is a consideration. I want to know how this person presents themselves. I have seen too many people who come in a bit disheveled, with odd errors such as shoes with no socks, etc. Psychologically we will associate certain things to certain personality traits, however, if the person wears something that gives a certain impression and then actually conveys a different impression in the interview, it can be counteracted both negatively and positively. Ultimately the interview and credentials win but there have been times where I have weeded out people based on appearances. Confidence and ability articulate yourself makes more of a difference.
     
  17. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Sep 17, 2013

    That said, I once reccommended for hire (and they did hire) a woman with a huge coffee stain on her suit.

    She had spilled it on the way to the interview, and was faced with the choice of being on time or being stain-free. She made the right choice, we had a laugh at her expense, and she made a point about her ability to roll with the punches and make good choices.
     
  18. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Sep 17, 2013

    I agree that it probaby doesn't really matter what color you wear, but how that color makes you feel in the interview. I am much happier in bright colors and that will reflect in an interview.
     
  19. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Sep 17, 2013

    I certainly think that it's better to look clean and put together than disheveled and wrinkly. Even so...pink versus grey? Nah.

    I do agree that it could make you feel better about yourself and more confident, and that could well be the difference in a job. I just have such a hard time thinking that any decent interviewer would be like, "Grey shirt? Otherwise stellar resume and personality? Pass."
     
  20. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Sep 17, 2013

    I started a response to the OP twice and decided to leave it alone. But I see someone else feels similarly. So I'm just chiming in to say I agree with this.

    I also feel the OP's question about whether she'd be allowed to work during lunch and after school is interesting...mainly because I wouldn't want to give the impression I do something when it reality I don't do it often. It's not genuine. Yes, it's additional work so you can't be reprimanded for not doing it, but it can sure color their thinking.
     
  21. leighbball

    leighbball Virtuoso

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    Sep 17, 2013

    Congrats!!! Getting a job in NJ is not easy. :)
     

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