Q&A: What are some of the most damaging interview mistakes pilots make?

interview1Question: What are some of the most damaging interview mistakes pilots make?

Answer: A very popular question! And, recent dilemmas faced by Cage Consulting clients highlight two important facts that a pilot must face in order to eliminate two of the most damaging interview mistakes.

FACT # 1
The decision to not provide requested information on employment applications will follow the pilot throughout his or her career.

I recently had a Special Concerns appointment with a new client. Several years earlier this pilot had made the decision to withhold, from his past pilot employers, information concerning a negative situation in his background.  However, as he grew older and more mature, he had a change of heart and wanted to “come clean” and share this negative information to prospective employers.  Although I congratulated him for making the decision to be open and honest, I also had to deliver the bad news that, now, his lack of openness was going to be a bigger issue than the negative situation itself.

This client found out the hard way that information, once left out, still fills a slot in your permanent history. This pilot had withheld information concerning a DUI (driving under the influence) he’d received very early in his life. Now that he wanted to acknowledge this mistake he would not only have to discuss the reasoning behind this conviction but, even more importantly, he’d have to TRY to explain the reasoning for his non-disclosure. His integrity was going to be in question. And, is it possible to be a truly ‘professional’ pilot without integrity?

Do yourself a huge favor and don’t rationalize leaving out information that is specifically requested by a potential employer.  We all make mistakes, but truly successful people acknowledge their mistakes and work hard to improve. If you do that, you will not only get points for honesty, but your integrity will not be questioned.

The goal of every job interview is to receive a job offer.

I had another client who set an Interview Preparation Consultation with me for an upcoming interview with a growing national carrier.

During our first conversation he mentioned that he had just returned from an interview at a small regional carrier. He also mentioned that he had not done any preparation for the regional carrier interview because he hadn’t been entirely sure he wanted the job. He went on to say how much he really wanted this upcoming national airline job and he was dedicated to being prepared.

During our work together I uncovered some elementary interviewing errors in his presentation. As we discussed these he said, “Wow, I did that in the regional interview.” During our work together he found out that the regional carrier did not offer him a job. Now, his upcoming national interview became more stressful simply by virtue of having no back-up job. Plus, his confidence was diminished because he thought he’d been a ‘shoo-in’ for the regional position.

Although this client knew, intellectually, that ANY flying job is a plum (especially during these lean times), this fact didn’t hit him emotionally until he wasn’t offered the job.

As you progress through your career make sure that you view each and every interview as the plum opportunity that it is. Your entire focus, for ANY interview, should be to land a job offer!

If you would like to arrange a Special Concerns Consultation, Interview Preparation or Career Consulting appointment with Cheryl please contact her at 1-888-899-CAGE (2243) or email her Cheryl@cageconsulting.com