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.

*******

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

 

 


To Get a Job in Sports, You Need to Gain Experience

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

This is the third in a series of four blogs on “The competition for jobs in the sports industry is stiff, therefore you need to prepare accordingly.” The first blog discussed the need for mentoring in order to advance your career and the second was on effective networking. In this article I am sharing the importance of gaining experience in order to secure your next job in the sports world.

Remember that the reason that I am writing on this topic is a result of an article that Bill King wrote in Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal that shared that there are many more sports management graduates than there are job openings. Because of this factor, you will need to be very proactive in making your dreams come true about working in the sports industry. Now I’m not trying to scare you off, I’m trying to give you practical advice that will help you to be one of the people who becomes employed in sports and has a successful career.

In a recent article in Psychology Today, Katharine Brooks wrote that employers want proof of your job related skills. She shared that experience is imperative as employers are looking to hire job seekers.

Whether you’re a recent graduate from a sports management program, or looking to move up in the profession, experience is one of the main keys to getting the job. This need for experience was seen in a recent study by Millennial Branding, which showed that 91% of employers believe that “students should have between one and two internships before they graduate.” Of these employers, “87% of companies think that internships should last at least three months for students to gain enough experience.” But just because you’re completing an internship, don’t have false expectations that the organization you’re doing your internship with will hire you – most students aren’t hired on after their internship. Instead, focus on how you can gain experience, secure strong recommendations, and further your career.

And here’s one of the most disturbing elements of the study . . . for entry-level jobs, “42% of employers are turned off by how unprepared students are in interviews.” While I’m a bit shocked by this, I shouldn’t be. In my 25+ years working in college sports and 11 years as an athletic director, I’ve hired dozens (if not hundreds) of people and reviewed thousands of resumes. There are just too many people who don’t know the basic fundamentals of the job search process. You need to gain experience both within your chosen profession and on how to get a job.

The point I’m trying to make is that gaining experience is key to getting your next job. This experience might be securing a second internship. It might be volunteering your services to an organization where you’d like to work someday. Or it might be gaining greater knowledge and networking by attending conferences, conventions, or professional development activities. You either grow and gain experience, or you become one of those statistics from the Street and Smith article. There are just too many passionate people who want to succeed in this industry. You can too; you just need to have a plan and work hard to gain the appropriate experience and skills.

Good luck as you continue to grow and learn within the sports industry. Please let me know if I can help you in any way.

 

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

 

 


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

 

 


Make Sure You Prepare For These Seven Interview Questions

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

Jake is excited for his upcoming interview.  After six years as an assistant coach, Jake is looking to move up in the coaching profession.

After working under an extremely successful coach, Jake believes now is the perfect time to make the move to a head coaching position. He has experience in all aspect of running a program including preseason conditioning, on-court coaching, recruiting, scouting, and player development. What he doesn’t have experience in is interviewing for a job.

To better prepare himself for his interview, Jake sought the help of a veteran coach and his mentor, Bob Cross. Coach Cross was Jake’s head coach in college and has been a great mentor ever since. So naturally, Jake sought his advice and guidance when it came to interviewing for a head coaching position. Coach Cross shared various interview preparation tips and strategies, and then shared seven interviewing questions that Jake should be prepared to answer during the interview. These seven questions include:

  1. Tell us about yourself.
  2. What are your strengths?  Weaknesses?
  3. What is your coaching philosophy and coaching style?
  4. What is your vision for the program?
  5. Give us an example of a difficult problem you’ve had to deal with regarding a student-athlete and how you handle the situation.
  6. What is your plan for the first 90 days on the job?
  7. Why should we hire you?

In the end, Jake aced his interview and he is excited for his new challenge as a head coach. He paid his dues, sought the guidance of a mentor, and was prepared for his interview. He is now actively planning for his first season as a head coach.

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 or his new book Execute for Success at www.execute4success.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.  This is a must read for anyone who has a goal of working in athletic administration”

-Bill Fusco
Director of Athletics
Sonoma State University

 

 


Ten Elements of an Effective Job Search Campaign

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

Mark awoke before his I-phone’s alarm was set to go off at 6:45am.  He had a restless nights sleep because of his excitement for his informational interview with Thomas Griffin. Tom, as his friends referred to him, is a retired college athletic director who mentors young people in their search for a career in the sports industry.  Mark’s uncle had played college basketball with Tom in the late 1960’s and referred Mark to him.

Tom Griffin had a 40-year career as a college coach and athletic director, and he is now giving back to the community by mentoring young people who are interested in careers in college sports.  The two would meet at a local coffee shop where Tom does most of mentoring.

As Mark arrived at the coffee shop, Tom welcomed him with a bright smile and a firm handshake. After about 15 minutes of small talk and introductions, the two began to talk about working in college sports. Tom first described how college athletic departments are structured and then shared the different types of jobs that exist in an athletic department. As they continued with their discussions, Tom got into more detail about how to get a job in college sports. He identified 10 elements that are necessary for conducting a successful job search campaign.  He told Mark that these elements are from the book “Getting Hired in College Sports”.  He went on to say that it’s a “how to” book for the job seeker and Tom asks that each of his mentees get a copy so they can use the worksheets that are included.  As they continued with their conversation, Tom gave Mark a handout that listed these 10 job search elements. These elements are a necessity for job seekers to know in order to secure a job.  The following are the 10 elements that Tom shared with Mark:

  1. You must properly assess your skills, abilities, strengths and traits
  2. You need to properly plan your career
  3. You need to establish a target market for your job search campaign
  4. You need to effectively promote yourself with a well-written cover letter and resume
  5. You need to create a compelling Personal Sales Pitch
  6. You need to complete an Interview Preparation Form
  7. You need to prepare to answer interview questions
  8. You need to organize your job search campaign
  9. You need to know the proven strategies for executing a successful job interview
  10. You need to be strategic in following-up after your interview

The two continued to talk for over two hours and in the end they agreed to continue to work together so Mark can develop all 10 elements of the job search process. This will help him to position himself for an outstanding career in the world of college sports. For more information on the job search process, or the book “Getting Hired in College Sports”, feel free to contact Howard Gauthier at howard@sportscareersinstitute.com or go to his website at www.SportsCareersInstitute.com.

 

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 or his new book Execute for Success at www.ThePositiveLeader.org.  

*******

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.  This is a must read for anyone who wants to work in college athletics”

-Bill Fusco
Director of Athletics
Sonoma State University

 

 


Your Job Search: How Hungry Are You?

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

How bad do you want to work in the sports industry? If you truly want to make it in the sports field, you have to be hungry, hungry to achieve your goal.

Hunger is an extreme desire to achieve your goals and objectives. When you’re hungry, nothing will stand in your way. You will make the necessary sacrifices, you will work hard, and you will stay focused on your goal. It doesn’t mean that you will operate with a “win at all cost” attitude that will hurt others just so you can get what you want, quite the opposite. When you’re hungry you will become the ultimate professional. You will dress for your next job, you will work hard to learn the necessary skills, and you will look to build strong relationships.

In my book, Execute for Success, I outline eight elements that will help you to achieve your goals and objectives. If you want to succeed in the sports industry, you will want to:

  1. Find your passion by becoming engaged in your activities and adopt an optimistic attitude toward these activities.
  2. Establish outcome goals and performance goals that are clear, challenging, and in writing. Use the SMART system to organize and target the outcomes you want to achieve.
  3. Maintain unwavering resolve and determination to accomplish your career goals.
  4. Learn the fundamental skills of your craft or activity.
  5. Develop and improve your skills through proper training programs and deliberately practice these skills.
  6. Exercise both disciplined thought and disciplined action.
  7. Stay focused on your job and eliminate distractions.
  8. Anticipate changes within the industry, adjust quickly, and re-establish your goals.

These eight elements are outlined in my book and are shown to help people achieve success. Take a moment to reflect on each of these elements and see how they might apply to where you are in your profession and your job search. By applying these elements to your goal of working in the sports industry, you will be taking a large step towards feeding your hunger, your hunger of working in the world of sports. So again I ask you, how hungry are you?

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 or his new book Execute for Success at www.execute4success.com.

*******

Helping You Get A Job 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

 

 


Positioning Yourself For Your Next Job

By Dr. Howard Gauthier

Periodically, I receive telephone calls or e-mails from people who are seeking advice about their job search. That was the case last March when “David” contacted me about the possibility of applying for a head soccer coaching position. David was an assistant soccer coach at a low-major Division I program on the East Coast and he was thinking about applying for a head coaching position at a mid-major Division I soccer program on the West Coast.

David knew that I was a former Division I athletic director and he wondered how a Division I AD would view his application. He wanted me to be honest with him, so I was. I asked if he knew anyone at the institution – he didn’t. I asked if he knew anyone, who knew anyone at the institution – he didn’t. I asked these questions because the best way to get a job (assuming that you’re qualified) is to have connections with people at the institution. If you don’t have these types of connections, you then need to have the skills and experiences that will make you a very attractive and qualified candidate.

Since David didn’t have any connections within the institution, he now became a bit of a long shot for landing the job. To complicate matters even more, David was trying to make the leap from being an assistant coach at a lower level to a head coach at a higher level. This is a difficult move to make.

So what type of candidate would an athletic director recruit to a position such as this? Typically, a head coaching position will be filled by either (a) someone who is an assistant coach at an equal or higher level of competition, or (b) someone who is a head coach at an equal or next lower level of competition. Of course, there are exceptions to these rules. But these strategies are pretty common hiring practices in both coaching and athletic administration.

For example, if a mid-major university such as Colorado State was looking to hire a coach, they would likely hire an assistant from a major program such as the Big 12 or Pac 12, or hire a head coach from an equal (or slightly lower) level of competition such as the Missouri Valley Conference or the Big Sky Conference. To further this example, take a look at the hiring of the last two Head Men’s Basketball Coaches at Colorado State. In 2007, Tim Miles was hired after leading North Dakota State to success as an independent (he was a head coach from the same Division but at a lower level of competition). Miles had success at CSU and was then hired by Nebraska for their head coaching position in 2012 (he was a head coach from the same Division but CSU is in a lower level conference than Nebraska). Colorado State responded to losing Miles by hiring Larry Eustachy from Southern Mississippi (he was a head coach from the same Division and Southern Mississippi is at the same level of competition).

These two hires are pretty typical for every sport at every level. Athletic Department’s either hire a head coach from an equal or slightly lower level of competition, or hire an assistant from a higher level of competition. The bottom line is, that in order to being hired you need to be qualified for the position, it helps to know the people doing the hiring, and you need to position yourself for the job. David’s desire to make the leap from a lower level assistant to a mid level head coach was unrealistic. And after our conversation, David reasoned that if the mid level is where he wants to be a head coach, he would either need to become a head coach at a lower-level Division I program or as an assistant at a higher-level Division I program. He now understands the importance of positioning.

 

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 or his new book Execute for Success at www.execute4success.com.

*******

#1 Sports Job Book

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

Click Here To Purchase Only $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 Men’s Basketball Coach
Creighton University