BLOG: You won't believe these bizarre things overheard in Sparta Global interviews!

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Blog by Al Marshall, Talent Consultant, Sparta Global Academy

In 2016 Sparta Global ran more than 70 Assessment days and interviewed almost 400 candidates from all over the UK. The vast majority were well prepared, eloquent and business savvy applicants… but some were not. In the field of IT, it is almost as valuable to learn from mistakes as it is successes. As advice for what NOT to say during an interview, here are some examples of statements we overheard during interviews...

1. "So, what do you guys do?"

Before attending an interview, it is important to research the company you are attempting to join. By doing this, you can offer insight into how well you will fit in an organisation. 

2. "I like walking in the countryside with my dog Lucy, we sometimes go blueberry picking with my cousins."

It is best to stay on subject in interviews. At this stage we want to assess your passion for technology and how well you will adapt and learn new digital skills with us - we are less interested in your dog...

3. "I just want to make money, doesn’t matter how. How much do you earn by the way?"

Not a great conversation starter. We want to work with people who are motivated by a passion for technology, not money. 

4. "I hope the training here is better than it was in prison."

Probably best not to shout about a criminal history...

5. "Man, I don’t know what it is but I am just terrible at interviews."

It is fair to say that interviews can be scary, but we try to make our assessment days as pain-free as possible. Being yourself and being confident is the most important thing to remember.

6. "I couldn’t live in London, why pay more to live in a place where everyone hates you?"

Sparta Global provides its Spartans with the opportunity to work in exciting locations around the UK - including London - even helping trainees to relocate if they choose to. For this reason, we are looking for open-minded candidates. 

7. "You guys got a beer fridge? My friend recently joined a company that has one and I can’t let him beat me."

Professionalism is always important. Beer fridge or no fridge - a place on our graduate programme is something you should be proud to shout about.

8. "People don’t really get me."

If you are confident in yourself, we can place our confidence in you. 

9. "No I don’t really read books, it’s just too complicated and I get bored too easily."

Technology is constantly evolving and advancing. We are looking for candidates with a willingness to learn and appetite to improve and grow - even if the work is hard. 

10. (A candidate starts sobbing uncontrollably halfway through the interview) "You guys are so nice and I don’t think I’m good enough."

If you are invited to interview with us or to attend one of our assessment days, we already see something in you. 

11. "Yeah sorry about the bruise, got into a fight in the bar last night. (jokingly) You should see the other guy!"

After completing our Academy courses, we place our Spartans with clients almost immediately. We don't want them to be arriving to work with black eyes...

12. "I’m hoping to go travelling for 6 months and need money to fund the trip. But the real reason I want this job is…"

We invest a lot into our Spartans and want to help our trainees develop longstanding and successful careers in technology. For this, we are looking for dedicated individuals who can go on to change the world with their new digital skills.

13.  "Oh this isn’t the right job for me but, you know, it’s nice to be out of the house."

We are glad to help people get out and about, but this isn't really the best mindset. By researching what we do and what is required of our Spartans, you will know in advance whether joining Sparta Global is the right career move for you. 

So, what lessons can be learnt from some of these bizarre interview comments: be confident, be yourself, but above all - show us your desire for a career in technology. If we can see this, we will want to take you on the next Sparta Global adventure and your exciting new journey can begin! 

If you would like to come to one of our next assessment days, or to find out more, call us on +44 (0) 208 939 1713.