Tell me about a mistake you’ve made.
My TV station where I was an associate producer planned to run a story about a case of hepatitis that was contracted through a local restaurant. The reporter had been sent out late for the story, and he was very late in gathering information. By the time he had his piece together, it was nearly time for it to air. I had to hurry just to get his subtitles on the air, and as I talked to him on the phone, I didn’t have time to listen to what he was planning to say live. He yelled something to me right before he hung up, and I said OK, even though I didn’t know what he planned to say. When we got on the air, he told viewers that if they thought they had hepatitis, they should call 911. I took responsibility for his mistake. I learned that when a story is that important, you can’t take chances. The story needed to be moved or cut off to be aired correctly.
Why should we hire you?
The evolution of my career demonstrates that I can make an immediate and positive contribution in this position. Through hard work and diligence, my professional career has been a bit of a rag-to-riches story. When I first started working full-time after college, I took an entry-level job as a file clerk at a major insurance company. From the beginning, I was motivated to be much more. I worked my way up through the ranks into the positions of claims data-entry operator, claims examiner, and then underwriter. When I left this company, I went on to become a retirement plan administrator, then onto benefits specialist. Ultimately, I became an assistant finance director in charge of group benefits and workers’ comp for the City of Scarsdale. My progressive learning process was not based on theory picked up in a classroom; I gained knowledge through actually researching and performing essential job-related functions. Primarily, I am a fast learner, and if hired, I intend to minimize your training and hiring costs, because I have always been motivated to learn, even if it means personally investing my time and resources as part of the process.
My abilities in so many areas “ sales, marketing, promotions, and management “ will be invaluable for your company including my experience working with people with diverse backgrounds and at different levels, my background working with various clients, my work overseeing sales teams, my eye for detail, the fact that I strive to do the best job possible at all times. I’m also reliable, loyal, and trustworthy … and if you hire me, you will have a team player who will add to the integrity and quality of your sales force for years to come. As an example of the kind of results I get that would justify your hiring me: Sales were down in the electronics department of the retail store at which I worked as an assistant manager. The perception was that our products were inferior to a competitor. I took the initiative to create excitement at the store level to increase sales. I attained buy-in from my manager so that I could run a contest. I collected sales data from the store on our products and used that information to back the need for this contest. My manager loved the idea. He thought it was exciting and loved the fact that I provided him with details on how I planned to track the sales process. In the end, I increased sales for that month by 100 percent, which was phenomenal.