Friday, November 02, 2007

Friday Five: Interviews

Mother Laura over at RGBP was noticing that lots of the Rev Gals are interviewing these days. (I just gone done with some myself!) So she posts the following Friday Five:

1. What was the most memorable interview you ever had?
Probably the one that should never have taken place. I got a phone call from a church that wanted to do a phone interview, but that was the first I'd ever heard of this place, so I wanted a chance to look at their info and location. But I said a tentative yes, explaining that I needed a chance to look over their CIF (church information form, for you non-Presbys) and then after I'd read it, discovered this was not a place I felt called to. So after trying to call the number he gave me about 5 or 6 times in one night and several times over the next few days, (get this, no machine, no voicemail!) I decided to use the email from their information form. Apparently it was there for show because in no one checked it in a week's time and they still called me for the interview. I was not ready, to say the least. I went ahead with it since the whole committee had gathered for that purpose and I wasn't sure how appropriate it was for me to say, "Hey! I tried to call you all week, emailed you, etc. Don't you people check your communications?!" I must have done ok, b/c at the end of the interview they asked me to send sermon tapes. (Needless to say, what they got instead was a "no, thank you" letter.)

2. Have you ever been the interviewer rather than the interviewee? If so, are you a tiger, a creampuff, or somewhere in between?
I've never been an official interviewer for someone seeking a position, but I did ask plenty of questions when I was visiting the church that finally called me. So I suppose that was a sort of interview. That being the case, I'd say more like a tiger in creampuff clothing. No one would look at me and think 'intimidating,' but I know I asked some pretty good, well-aimed questions.

3. Do phone interviews make you more or less nervous than in-person ones?
More. I really like to be able to read cues like facial expressions and reactions and such when I'm talking to people.

4. What was the best advice you ever got to prepare for an interview? How about the worst?
It helped me to write down the answers to the most common questions, like "what are your strengths and weaknesses," etc. By the way, if you're ever on a committee, get more creative than that and "where do you see yourself in five to ten years." What kind of question is that to ask a pastor?!
Sorry, flashback.
Anyway, the other best advice was to have a drink next to me while I was on the phone. Yeah, a grown-up kind. They can't see it and I was way more relaxed. Personally, I prefer and gin & tonic with lots of lime.

5. Do you have any pre-interview rituals that give you confidence?
Nah, just gotta have daddy keep the kid out of the room so I can hear what they're asking if I'm going to be on the phone. Otherwise, for in person, I try to make myself eat something even if I'm too nervous to feel like eating, just so I don't feel ill later.


karlajean said...

great play! an adult beverage on a phone interview...huh! I never thought of that!
and congrats on call and ordination and installment. hard,hard, hard, work and love and charity and perseverance.
way to go!

reverendmother said...

Congratulations on your call, by the way!

Kievas said...

What a bizarre interview in #1. It's really annoying when people list contact information but never bother to follow up!

Mother Laura said...

Congrats on the new call! May it be everything you hope for.

I think I am the only person in the world who feels less nervous in phone interviews.