Note: An interviewer will never pose a question like this; however, key or pivotal moments are a great starting point for telling stories.
Everyone has a moment or some key moments where they felt a significant change or a time where things just started to click.
A story with lessons, where hard work paid off, or how you overcame a big obstacle, is one that you will never forget.
Why? If it is authentic, it will evoke an emotion from the Interviewee and, as a result, resonate with the Interviewer.
One of my key ‘moments’ came as a 21-year-old Junior Surveyor.
Under my mentor’s initial direction, I painstakingly surveyed, set out, contoured, colored, and measured complex concrete screeds in a live pharmaceutical plant. This included working in between hot, stinky pieces of equipment. The surveying took three days, the balance took nearly two weeks.
All of this preparation led to an assessment of a final account with my subcontractor and separately for the client. It took weeks of effort but resulted in a considerable profit margin for the Contractor I worked for. Why, because neither the SubContractor nor the Client had the records or was willing to do what I had done.
That showed me the value of doing the hard tasks, and how to use that information to your benefit.
What question could I work this story into?
- A difficult task.
- Where you had to prove yourself.
- Going above and beyond.
- How you showed initiative with a task.
- How you managed to run your first project?
- How committed are you?
The point is not how ‘amazing’ the story is but was it delivered with passion, enthusiasm, did your eyes light up when talking about it?