https://www.toastmasters.org/pathways-overview

Job Hunting – Using Toastmasters Pathways to Prepare for the Interview, Part II

by

For In Part 1 of this series, I discussed valuable lessons that came from using prepared speeches in a Pathways project to better develop skills for job interviews by determining content and practicing that content in the club. In this segment, we’ll discuss using Project 2, Evaluation and Feedback to further practice and prepare for that next interview.

Project 2 – Evaluation and Feedback, Speech 1.

You’ve given your IceBreaker, and practiced a consice, profession answer to the common, “Tell me about yourself” question. What’s the next step?

One mistake you want to avoid in a job interview is not to drone on and lose your audience (the employer). If your next boss’ eyes glaze over as you recount the 17 times you saved your current boss $20 on a team lunch, she probably won’t be your next boss.

For the first iteration of the E&F speech, I recommend splitting the speech into 3 questions (you pick the questions) and then use this format:

For the Introduction – Ask your introducer to tell your club audience that you’re going to answer 3 interview questions in this speech, and that you’ll be speaking to them as if they were your intended interview audience (i.e. a single interviewer or panel).

For the opening – List each of the three questions you plan to answer and briefly why you chose those questions (i.e. skill specific, related to a specific job, etc)

In the body of the speech – give each question individually, followed by your answer. Each answer should be 1.5 – 2 minutes

Some examples I like:
Tell me what you know about our company?
Why are you looking right now? (or why did you leave your last job?)
Tell me about your greatest strength (and/or weakness)?

For the closing– in roughly 1 minute, explain why you would be ideal for the position you’re applying for

Since you already did “Tell me about yourself?” in the Icebreaker, you can choose 3 different questions for this project. You could choose to include the “Tell me about yourself” question if you want to practice your changes based on the feedback to the Icebreaker project, but that’s up to you.

For some ideas on questions, I suggest CareerBuilder.com which has great content on interview questions, such as this article: https://www.careerbuilder.com/advice/the-perfect-answers-to-10-common-job-interview-questions

As before, when the meeting is over I recommend that you find a few minutes to talk to your mentor about the presentation, and discuss plans for your next speech. As always, keep the notes from your evaluation. You’ll want to practice these questions again in the second speech for this project.

Project 2 – Evaluation and Feedback, Speech 2

The objectives in this project include taking the feedback fom the first speech and using them to craft a second speech. You could choose to rehears the same 3 questions, or mix it up with 1-3 new questions.

For the Introduction – Ask your introducer to once again tell your club audience that you’re going to answer 3 interview questions in this speech, and that you’ll be speaking to them as if they were your intended interview audience (i.e. a single interviewer or panel). You could have the introducer mention these will (or will not) be the same questions as before.

For the opening – Once again, list each of the three questions you plan to answer and briefly why you chose those questions (i.e. skill specific, related to a specific job, etc). I’d also recommend commenting on either these being revised answers based on the feedback of the previous speech, or new questions where you are incorporating the previous feedback to improve your delivery (whichever is true).

In the body of the speech – same as before, give each question individually, followed by your answer. Each answer should be 1.5 – 2 minutes

Some additional examples:
Tell me about a time you had to deal with conflict on the job?
Why are you interested in our industry?
What gets you out of bed every day?

For the closing– in roughly 1 minute, explain why you would be ideal for the position you’re applying for (using the feedback from the last time)

Finally, when the meeting is over find a few minutes to talk to your mentor about the presentation, and discuss plans for Project #3. As always, keep the notes from your evaluation. You’ll want to practice these questions again.

Project 2 – Evaluation and Feedback, the Speech Evaluation

To complete this project, you’ll need to serve as a speech evaluator for another member of the club. Since their speech could literally be on any topic, if probably won’t directly relate to your job interview goals. However, attentively listening and working to help them with their goal is a great way to pay back your club for their help, and pay it forward with helping that member. Plus, listening is always good practice for being attentive with your next interviewer.

In our next article (coming soon), I’ll cover Project #3, Research your Topic and we’ll look at how to practice ways to impress your next boss with well organized answers to their questions.

Good Hunting!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *