Questions Not To Ask In An Interview

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

Sometimes it’s not what you do or say in life, sometimes it’s what you don’t do or say. Take Jim for example. Jim has been searching for a job for a couple of months since graduating from college. He has struggled in his first couple of interviews so he decided to do some research into the proper techniques a person should use during an interview.

As he was reading through a book on career development, he ran across a section that discussed the types of questions a person should not ask during a job interview. The author reasoned that the goal of the interview is to build positive relationships during your meetings and that you need to show the hiring manager that you have done your research. By asking the following types of questions, it is clear to the search committee that you have not adequately prepared for the interview.

  • Avoid asking questions that are answered in the institution’s general information or on their website (e.g. number of sports offered, the record of last years team, etc). These types of questions will let the interviewer know that you did not do your homework. But by all means ask questions if some information is not clear to you.
  • Avoid asking about the salary or benefits in the first interview. This is a major mistake. Quite often, the salary can be found on the Internet or in a published article. The interviewer may choose to bring this information up, but you should not initiate the topic. By asking about the salary too early in the process, it will give the impression that you are more concerned with what is in it for you. In fact, the interviewer may give you the salary range up front to see if you are still interested in the position. If the salary is a bit low, do not acknowledge this; rather allow the process to take its course. If you are their choice, you can attempt to negotiate a better salary. However, do not think that you can get the hiring manager to increase the salary by 25-50 percent. This is a waste of time for both you and the hiring institution.
  • Avoid asking any personal questions or questions that will put the hiring manager on the defensive. These may include, but are not limited to: their age, race, religion, health, or marital status.
  • Avoid asking questions that have already been answered in the interview session. If some of the questions on your list have already been answered during the current interview, do not repeat them. However, feel free to ask the same question to a different group of people within the organization, especially if you are not comfortable with the answer you received.

These are some of the basic interviewing techniques that Jim uncovered in his research. Remember, ultimately the job will go to the candidate who is best prepared and who effectively executes the basics of the job interview process. In all you do, you will want to EXECUTE FOR SUCCESS!

Howard Gauthier is an Associate Professor of Athletic Administration at Idaho State University. He is a former collegiate athletic director and collegiate basketball coach. He is also an author of 9 books. Check out his book, Getting Hired In College Sports – 2nd Edition at www.sportscareersinstitute.com.

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The #1 Careers Book in Sports

2nd edition Image

In Getting Hired In College Sports you will discover:

  • The types of jobs that exist in college sports
  • How to plan and navigate your career
  • How to create an effective job search campaign 
  • The proper way to create an effective resume, cover letter, and sales pitch
  • How to properly brand yourself
  • Techniques and strategies to prepare for your interview
  • How to properly prepare yourself for the five types of interview questions 
  • How to properly follow-up after the interview in order to influence the decision of the hiring manager

Only $23.95 Click Here To Purchase 

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“I have recommended this book to many aspiring sports administrators.  A must read for anyone whom has a goal of working in athletic administration”

-Bill Fusco
Director of Athletics
Sonoma State University

 

 


Seeking Advice From a Mentor is Just Plain Smart

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

In last week’s blog, The Competition For Jobs In The Sports Industry Is Stiff – Prepare Accordingly, I shared four strategies a person should use in order to get a job in the sports industry. Today, I am discussing the first of these four strategies, seeking out a mentor.

When I began my sports career in 1984 I began by seeking advice from one of the best athletic directors in all of college sports. Mike Lude was the Athletic Director at the University of Washington and I was working in Finance in downtown Seattle, having recently received my bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. I had a great passion for sports and wanted to combine my formal education with this passion. My father-in-law suggested that I contact the athletic director at Washington and pick his brain. So I called Mike Lude and two days later I was sitting in his office asking several well thought-out questions. Mr. Lude gave me about two hours of his time that day. And it was his insights, advice, and recommendations, that gave me the foundational beginnings for a 25+ year career as a men’s basketball coach and Division I athletic director.

Throughout my career I stayed in touch with Mr. Lude and kept him updated on my progress. This type of mentorship is common, and has at least three main objectives – it provides you with the knowledge necessary to put you on the right career path, it also speeds up your career path, and finally it helps you to begin your networking. I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to your career to elicit help and advice from someone you knows the correct career path and what mistakes to side step.

I’m not by far the only person who has used the guidance, advice, and motivation of someone within the profession. Take Jennifer Cohen for example. She is the current athletic director at the University of Washington. As youngster she sought the advice from the University of Washington football coach, Don James. Cohen was interested in becoming a football coach and Don James encouraged her to follow her passion for sports. You can see an interview with Cohen here, where she discusses the impact Coach James had on her life.

Working in sports is a great adventure. Whether you coach or are an administrator like Jennifer Cohen, you should follow your passion for sports and pursue a career in the sports world. But the competition for jobs in the sports world is keen. Don’t settle for trying to advance your career by yourself. Seek out and accept help from others. In other words talk to professionals and ask for their help and advice. Be a sponge and soak up the knowledge of others – the knowledge of the profession and the knowledge of how to get a job. If you want it bad enough, you can get the job of your dreams. Best of luck as you pursue your sports career!

 

Remember, ultimately the job will go to the candidate who is prepared and who effectively executes the basics of the job interview process. In all you do, you will want to EXECUTE FOR SUCCESS! 

Howard Gauthier is an Associate Professor of Athletic Administration at Idaho State University. He is a former collegiate athletic director and collegiate basketball coach. He is also an author of 9 books. Check out his book, Getting Hired In College Sports – 2nd Edition at www.sportscareersinstitute.com.

*******

The #1 Careers Book in Sports

2nd edition Image

In Getting Hired In College Sports you will discover:

  • The types of jobs that exist in college sports
  • How to plan and navigate your career
  • How to create an effective job search campaign 
  • The proper way to create an effective resume, cover letter, and sales pitch
  • How to properly brand yourself
  • Techniques and strategies to prepare for your interview
  • How to properly prepare yourself for the five types of interview questions 
  • How to properly follow-up after the interview in order to influence the decision of the hiring manager

Only $23.95 Click Here To Purchase 

.
“I have recommended this book to many aspiring sports administrators.  A must read for anyone whom has a goal of working in athletic administration”

-Bill Fusco
Director of Athletics
Sonoma State University

 

 


Effectively Executing The Job Search Process

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

According to the book “Execute for Success”, execution is the process of effectively using skills, techniques and strategies to successfully perform your activities.  In the job search process, this means that you need to know, and be able to perform, the basic fundamental skills, strategies, and techniques of the job search process.

The job search process is composed of five segments that include: (a) the self-assessment stage, (b) preparation stage, (c) connection stage, (d) interview stage, and (e) the follow-up stage.  Mastering each of these components will help you to excel in the job search process and will help you to be competitive for the job you want.  More specifically, these five stages encompass:

 

  • Self-Assessment Stage – In the self-assessment stage you will identify your strengths, weaknesses, skills and abilities.  You will also understand what you like and dislike in a job, and what are your top personal traits.  You will then create a plan that will lead you to achieving your dream job.  Finally, you will systematically figure out which organizations you will want to contact in your job search.
  • Preparation Stage – During the preparation stage you will want to establish a target market contact list for the jobs you are seeking.  You will also want to construct a professional resume, write a cover letter that can sell you, create a personal sales pitch, be strategic in which references you use, develop answers to the interview questions you are most likely to be asked, know how to research the organizations within your target market, and understand how to prepare for an interview.
  • Connection Stage – In the connection stage you will want to develop a job search campaign, understand how to network within the industry, and know how to promote yourself.  You will also need to understand which promotional techniques you should use, how to create your brand, how to create a strategic marketing plan for yourself, and know how to control your job search.
  • Interview Stage – In the interview stage you will need to understand the proper approach for interviewing, the basic techniques you should use during an interview, and how to conduct yourself in a group interview.  You will also want to understand what type of questions you should ask in the interview, what mistakes people make, and how to successfully close the interview.
  • Follow-up Stage – During this stage you will want to conduct a follow-up mini-campaign that includes thanking the members of the search committee and addressing any issues or concerns they may have about you as a candidate.  You will also want to have an organized method for keeping track of each job you’ve applied for and the status of each of these searches.

These five stages are the major elements of the job search process.  To land a job, you will need to know, and be able to perform, the strategies and techniques that are within each of these five stages.  To assist you in your job search, the book “Getting Hired in College Sports” is available as a resource.  It identifies the techniques and strategies that are the best practices for all aspects of the job search process.  By performing these best practices you will be able to effectively execute the job search process.

Remember, ultimately the job will go to the candidate who is prepared and who effectively executes the basics of the job interview process. In all you do, you will want to EXECUTE FOR SUCCESS!

 

Howard Gauthier is an Associate Professor of Athletic Administration at Idaho State University.  He is a former collegiate athletic director and collegiate basketball coach.  He is also an author of 9 books.  Check out his book, Getting Hired In College Sports – 2nd Edition at http://www.SportsCareersInsitute.com or his newest book Execute for Success at www.Execute4Success.com.

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Be Prepared When The Right Job Opens

2nd edition Image

 

Be prepared when the right job opens up.  Give yourself the book that provides you with the top job search skills and techniques.  It’s a competitive industry, so be prepared!

Click Here To PurchaseOnly $23.95

.

This book is fantastic – it is very practical for people who want to get into (or advance) in the sports industry.”

 -Greg McDermott 
  Head Basketball Coach 
  Creighton University


Targeting Your Job Search

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

Geoff was not focused when it came to applying for jobs.  He wasn’t sure what type of job he wanted within sports, but he knew he wanted to work in a college athletic department.  His applications ranged from a position in compliance in the New England area, to marketing in the South, to a fund raising position in Texas.

As he was having lunch with a colleague, Lisa, one day, she mentioned that he needed to become more focused on the type of position he wanted.  In other words, he should specialize in a particular type of job (or profession) and target the institutions where he’d like to work. Lisa went on to say that when you specialize in a particular profession you are able to become an expert in that area, and people want to hire experts.  She also provided him with some advice for targeting the type of organization he should apply for within the college sports industry.

Geoff definitely had an area within the profession that he enjoyed doing and was good at performing.  He told Lisa that he understood the concept of specializing in a particular profession (even though he wasn’t practicing it), but wanted to know more about targeting specific institutions.  Prior to her current job, Lisa had read the book “Getting Hired in College Sports” and used the worksheets in the Getting Hired Workbook to help her establish a manageable and detailed job search campaign.  She went on to explain “By narrowing your target market you are better able to focus and identify the institutions where you’d like to work.  From there you can network into these organizations; and most jobs are secured through networking.”

Lisa went on to share five criteria that you could use to help identify the type of organizations that meet your interests within the profession.  These criteria include indentifying:

  1. The type of organization within college sports that you want to pursue.  This could be an athletic department, a recreation department, a conference office, a national office, or a professional association.
  2. The type of institution you want to work for.  This could include a state supported college, a private college, a private organization, a community college, or a 4-year college.
  3. The level of competition.  This could include organizations within the NCAA Division I, NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III, the NAIA, or the NJCAA? 
  4. Where you want to live geographically This would include the state or region within the country.
  5. The size of the community you’d like live in.  You might prefer a metropolitan area, a suburb, or even a rural location.

Of course, these five criteria are only an example of what you might use to narrow the organizations within your job search campaign.  The point is that you will want to narrow your search so you can focus your attention and energies on a manageable group of institutions.  Once you’ve identified these organizations, you will then want to begin to network your way into those institutions.

 

Remember, ultimately the job will go to the candidate who is prepared and who effectively executes the basics of the job interview process. In all you do, you will want to EXECUTE FOR SUCCESS!  

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Howard Gauthier is an Associate Professor of Athletic Administration at Idaho State University.  He is a former collegiate athletic director and collegiate basketball coach.  He is also an author of 9 books.  Check out his book, Getting Hired In College Sports – 2nd Edition at http://www.SportsCareersInsitute.com or his newest book Execute for Success at www.Execute4Success.com.

*******

Be Prepared When The Right Job Opens

2nd edition Image

 

Be prepared when the right job opens up.  Give yourself the book that provides you with the top job search skills and techniques.  It’s a competitive industry, so be prepared!

Click Here To PurchaseOnly $23.95

.

This book is fantastic – it is very practical for people who want to get into (or advance) in the sports industry.”

 -Greg McDermott 
  Head Basketball Coach 
  Creighton University


Social Media Can Hurt You and Your Job Both Today and in the Future

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

Fifty years ago this week, Bob Dylan released an album entitled “The Times, They Are A Changin’.”  And boy, did we see a lot of change in the ‘60’s.  This same theme can be used once again today to help explain the explosion of social media and it’s impact on our lives, and our jobs.

Before Facebook, Instagram, and the various photo and video sharing networks, people could make a social mistake and their boss or a search committee would never find out.  But in today’s society, you need to be careful what you say and what you do.  The decisions you make can come back to haunt you.  And an even bigger problem is that once your photo or video is on the web, these photos and videos will be available to the public forever.

The effects Facebook can have on a person’s job was captured this past summer when a successful high school basketball coach was fired from her job for a photo she upload to her Facebook page.  During a family reunion in July, the coach had a picture taken with her fiancé at a lake.  According to ABC News, the photo showed “the fiancé grabbing her chest”.  In most people’s eyes the picture was relatively benign, but to the school district administration, it was cause for termination.  She had the picture uploaded on Facebook for two days before the athletic director suggested that she remove the photo.  The photo was removed and everything was okay, or so it seemed.  In October, the school district’s administration was made aware of the photo, and she was immediately fired.

The coach hired an attorney and appealed the school’s decision.  After two months, a grievance panel concluded that the coach should have her job back.  In years past, a photo like this would have been placed in a photo album somewhere, but in today’s electronic age, a photo like this could cost you your job. 

You can debate if a photo such as this should get you fired or keep you from getting another job in the future.  But the key point is that the photo should never have been uploaded to a social networking site in the first place.  You need to be aware of the potential consequences of your actions and how your decisions can hurt you both in your current position and with your future jobs. “The Times, They Are A Changin’.”  

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Remember, ultimately the job will go to the candidate who is prepared and who effectively executes the basics of the job interview process. In all you do, you will want to EXECUTE FOR SUCCESS!  

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Howard Gauthier is an Associate Professor of Athletic Administration at Idaho State University.  He is a former collegiate athletic director and collegiate basketball coach.  He is also an author of 9 books.  Check out his book, Getting Hired In College Sports – 2nd Edition at http://www.SportsCareersInsitute.com or his newest book Execute for Success at www.Execute4Success.com.

*******

Be Prepared When The Right Job Opens

2nd edition Image

 

Be prepared when the right job opens up.  Give yourself the book that provides you with the top job search skills and techniques.  It’s a competitive industry, so be prepared!

Click Here To PurchaseOnly $23.95

.

This book is fantastic – it is very practical for people who want to get into (or advance) in the sports industry.”

 -Greg McDermott 
  Head Basketball Coach 
  Creighton University