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Too Polished BBs

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  • #35154

    Puzzling Dilemma
    Participant

    An associated of mine recently received feedback from a large financial institution that his replies to interview questions for a BB position were “too polished.”  He asked for more detail and was told that the interviewers knew he was knowledgable, competent and could be an asset to business but they felt that his replies did not tell them enough about what he had actually done to a “more detailed” level.  I shared this situation with others in my netowrk and learned that other BBs have experienced the same thing.  How does one overcome this dilemma of being “too polished” to get an offer? 

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    #98036

    KLF
    Participant

    Be specific as to what your role was in the project. Too many people talk about projects they worked on but when you get to the bottom of it, their role was small.
    I don’t think this is only the candidate’s fault, the employer should target specific answers during the interview.
    My 2c.
    KLF

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    #98039

    thad
    Member

    I have been on the side at times where I have been the one to say that the responses and candidate may be too polished. There is a big difference between knowing the theory and demonstrating actual application of it.
    I often ask for and expect details that provide an indication of how involved an individual was in a project. From the candidate’s view, you may think that too much detail may be boring, but I would rather get a lot of information that would show that the candidate wasn’t making stuff up and that he/she actually added value.
    The other potential issue might have been that the candidate came across as too aloof or “by the book” and not as approachable by less experienced members of a team.

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    #98066

    PB
    Participant

    Puzzling,
    One must remember – ‘action speaks louder than words’. In other words, when you are interviewing, make sure your answers reflect the results that you had achieved in your projects and how they were achieved. Where you saw shortfalls and how you dealt with that. How you picked your project team and how you managed the project, etc.
    Also, many people have Six Sigma on their resumes, therefore, interviewers are looking for individuals who do not give classic answers like – ‘In the Define stage we did this, and in the Measure stage we did that, etc.’ If the question was ‘ How did you approach your project?’ I would define how I picked my project, my team (how individual roles were defined within the team players), how results were achieved, how control plans were executed, etc.
    This is my take.
    PB

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    #98076

    Ken Feldman
    Participant

    Watch out for passive phrases such as; facilitated, organized, oversaw, managed, etc.  Use more action oriented phrases intended to show personal involvement not just oversight and peripheral involvement.

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    #98087

    sweettalker
    Member

    Can someone explain why companies and HR professionals are at such odds with each other over action vs responsibility?
    Check out employers on Monster, or read books by different “experts.” Some want you to use action words, like Darth is asking for. Others, including GE, for one, want you to say “What you’re responsible for.”
    A good manager and a bad manager can produce opposite results from the exact same responsibilities. It seems to me that asking what you were responsible for, as GE does, is like asking what your customers expected. Do I really care what your other customers expected, or do I want to know what you delivered?
    Goooooooooo ACTIVE!!!

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    #98218

    D falls
    Participant

    All of your responses are valid. My experience from both sides is to present as a mystery and have enough fact showing both theory and your involvement to prove your point while setting up the for the inquisition. This seams to sattisfy the adverage interviewer and stimulates the interviewer who realy has an interest in knowing the candidate tat will best fit the need. one problem is indertemining what is enough. Your best approach is do you researh as to the company need and seriousness while palitively inquireing more at the interview. This will allow you to in finality present you best atributes and knowledge in a complementary fashion to the company need.

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    #98320

    Chen
    Participant

    My experience has been the HR professionals have no idea what SixSigma is about.  I find myself educating the greater majority of them.  After moving to other stages of the interview process, I have also received the feedback ‘too polished’.  But again, I was educating the interviewer(s) when we should have been discussing appropriate results. 
    I have another quandry for consideration.  Most of the projects I have led or participated in have been in response to proprietary challenges and have employer confidential results.   Too much detail provides insight that is inappropriate to disclose to outside 3rd parties.  And, if 3rd attempts to confirm with references, the reference compromises his confidentiality obligations.
    How can an effective and insightful dialog be undertaken to communicate results and at the same time keep confidentiality agreements.

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    #98332

    cac
    Participant

    Jerry brings up a good point – how much to tell to a 3rd party – you may not want to reveal too much. But one way to show you know what to do & address the “too polished” issue is to talk about the stuff you discovered that didn’t work, the blind alleys you (and the team) went up, etc.  Everyone knows that you learn more from your mistakes plus you overcome the situation where statement after statement seems to re-enforce the idea that you did everything right the first time.  Performance improvement is not pretty, it’s a messy business – share that with the interviewer – they’re less likely to claim “too polished.”

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    #98334

    Tipper
    Member

    I too agree that most HR professionals don’t know squat about six sigma.  My interview experience at one prominent Charlotte, NC bank proved that.  I think the shaven head,  goateed “recruiter” (can’t recall his name – Mark, Mike?) may have actually asked me what a “black belt is anyways).  Needless to say, I turned down that job and based off what I read here, probably not a bad idea.  Besides, I like Memphis too much to leave!

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