What can you do to have a successful interview that puts you in the league of contemporary librarians?
It’s this time of the year, starting January all the way to June when job openings begin to emerge in both local and international schools. And, one begins to think about newer opportunities. One of my dear friend, says, “Once in a while, going for an interview tells you, your worth in the market.” scary but true! Keeping this in mind, I did a little research on some of the questions that might come up in the interview, apart from the regular ones we prepare for.
Firstly, send in your CV to the human resource department (HR). They will pass your CV to the right person, that’s the general protocol. You will be called and invited.
Secondly, it is important to read up on the latest trends and the school that you are interviewing with. Don’t be afraid to say you do not know. The interviewers don’t ask what is already mentioned in your CV, what’s the point? Interviewers want to get to know your educational belief and philosophy along with your strengths and weaknesses, your enthusiasm and the desire to learn. An interview is more of a conversation to get to know each other.
Here is a list of ten questions to help you think about yourself?
- Why do you wish to work at our school? What draws you to this institution?
- Tell us about two books that you’ve read recently? (Describe rather more than giving the titles of the books – this tell a lot)
- The interviewer might give you different scenarios: Suppose a student /parent comes into the library to complete a school project – what would you do?
- Describe your experience using technology and assisting people with technology in any setting?
- In your opinion, what are the top 3 things that libraries can do to impact its users and why?
- Describe what your interaction or your class looks like when you interact with students?
- What according to you are your strengths and weaknesses?
- Describe what teamwork or collaboration looks like to you in your experience?
- Describe your management style?
- How do you stay current in your field?
Other topics you may want to consider: Your views on the use of ebooks, information and media ethically. Different web 2.0 tools that you have used or learning to use. How would you deal with a problem situation? A successful project that you have been a part of and what makes you tick or enjoy in your role as a librarian.
Here are some questions you may want to ask your interviewer:
- What is the decision-making process or the protocol in bringing about changes in the library? ( This is when the Heads are looking to revamp the library and you may want to know the protocol of the organization)
- What databases or software do they currently use? (This will give you time to learn and prepare for your new role)
- What kind of training and professional development will I be offered? (This shows your desire to learn and grow)
- Would you share some light on the procurement and collection development philosophy or process? (Only if you are interested)
- How does the faculty or students or the community view the library at your school? (This will give you a brief overview of your future role and the current situation)