Interviewing techniques Essay
Interview is a vital part of any employment, as it first allows getting a job and later, in a number of professions, it becomes one of the major responsibilities, especially in those specialties, which are associated with social work, social research or mental health counseling. The present paper is intended to discuss the progress of my own understanding of interviewing over the last eight weeks of the course.
First of all, it needs to be noted that before entering the course, I had possessed basic knowledge in my profession and tended to focus on its allegedly central aspects like management in non-profit organizations and supervision, so interviewing at the very beginning appeared to me a simple job responsibility, which required no special training, but merely communication skills. Paradoxically, I believed that individuals should be treated as unique personalities during an interview, but at the same time regarded interviewing itself as a trivial part of job, where everything could be done according to certain patterns or algorithms.
For instance, when I imagined myself as an HR-manager, I decided to develop a specific interviewing technique and structure, fitting the organization I work for and to use this template with all candidates. Furthermore, the most expectable component of this job is regular inflow of new persons, who seek to receive employment – so why should I approach to the differently if job requirements and are standardized in the vacant occupation, and correspondingly, interviews with different candidates should not differ drastically.
Nevertheless, when listening the first lectures, I came to the following conclusion: some individuals might not disclose their real abilities and professional skills, whereas others might provide false information, and thus no-one is insured against hiring incompetent specialist, but the true purpose of the interview is revealing the applicant’s intentions, plans and secret abilities, which are not necessarily mentioned in the CV. In other professions, the purpose of interview is similar and points to the clarification of certain problems or complaints.
Thus, I learned to keep in mind the necessity of cultural and social sensitivity in this activity. Furthermore, the issues, which demand flexibly dealing with children, had been problematic to e prior to the course. In this sense, the information about developmental interviews with children turned out the most surprising, as it was first hard to realize the diversification of pedagogic approaches to children in terms of different types and modes of interview.
Nevertheless, Schafer and Navarro (2003) suggest : “To promote sensorimotor experiencing, school counselors may ask the student to “Pretend this (problem situation) is happening right now. Can you image that? Tell me what you are seeing as this is happening. The goal is to help the student describe the experience as if it were happening in the present and to tell about their physically embedded feelings” (Schafer and Navarro, 2003, p. 284).
This means, children should be interviewed with almost the same techniques as adults, and the overall framework should also be similar and include no imperatives or compulsion (Schafer and Navarro, 2003). Interestingly, before the course I believed children should have been taught or brought up, i. e. asymmetrical communication was more relevant, but after paying my attention to the special literature (Schafer and Navarro, 2003; Willis, 2005), I realized that they should also have been interviewed, i. e. this bilateral and symmetric communication was desirable.
After the third lecture, I realized the basic logic of the interviews, intended to solve certain problems. As I understand and interpret, deductive thinking and dialogue, aimed at specifying and concretizing details, should take place when the interlocutors need to formulate the interviewee’s problem(s). Furthermore, inductive thinking and inductive dialogue, aimed at expanding the scope of solutions, should be used, so that the cooperation between the interviewer and the interviewee is likely to result in the invention of new remedies or solutions.
During the next lectures I learned about the importance of neutral body language in the interview, which would create an appropriate atmosphere. Moreover, I began to control my own gestures and mimics in order to adjust them if necessary to the particular context of interview. More notably, I realized that during such a dialogue, the interviewer’s face should have become a ‘social zone’, which didn’t demonstrate strong emotions like surprise, excessive joy or disappointment. Later, I learned to distinguish between scheduled and non-scheduled interviews.
I believe, even moderately scheduled interview requires certain preparations or sketches of the questions, which are likely to be asked, which should be kept in mind. In addition, after getting the knowledge about sequencing, I found it difficult to maintain the sequence deigned, so additional practice is needed to train the ability to react/respond immediately within the frames of the desirable sequence. To sum up, both my theoretical knowledge and my perception of interview have been enriched in this course.
Furthermore, because of gaining new knowledge, I have developed flexibility, i. e. learned to take situational approach to interviewing and use the obtained knowledge within specific context. My attitude towards interview has substantially improved and the attention to details have increased, therefore, I have become more observant and developed the ability to fix and analyze non-verbal messages.
Schafer, J. and Navarro, J. (2003). Advanced interviewing techniques. Springfield, IL: Charles C. Thomas. Willis, G. (2005). Cognitive interviewing: a tool for improving questionnaire design. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Subject: Film techniques,
University/College: University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 19 April 2017
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