I received the interview for the job, which is a customer service advisor position at Mothercare, on Monday, to go for a group interview on Wednesday.
For me, my working history had never involved practical and/or group interviews, I was always used to face to face interviews in previous roles, so I wasn't sure what to expect and was incredibly nervous.
The group aspect of the interviews involved being placed into groups, being given a product in the middle of the table and as a group coming up with the 10 best selling points for that particular product, which then followed with a presentation to the other candidates. Similarly, the next task involved being given Mothercare catalogues and based on a product in the centre of the table, having to pick products that equalled £30 based on the item the customer had already ordered, which again, we had to report back.
Next was the selling task, we were given two sterilisers that are sold in Mothercare and each with different qualities and were given 25 minutes to read and prepare notes, followed by an interview where we had to sell the steriliser to our interviewer in a sales environment. I actually really liked this task, sales are my strong point but nerves did hold me back which is what the interviewer commented afterwards, but I counteracted that later on as my sales were fantastic!
After this we had a 5-10 minute proper interview with another interviewer (there were about 10-12 staff of Mothercare at this day, all with different roles who were assessing and interviewing on that day), where I just had to speak about my work history, (in which I was honest and mentioned I had to leave due to illness), difficult customer situations I have faced and how to deal with them, what I could bring to Mothercare, situations in which I have worked in a group to get something done (perfect example would be when I worked for Uglows), my goals and accomplishments for later in life, etcetc. The woman I met with was absolutely lovely, and I think that always help. In fact, all the staff were lovely, which really just reduced my nerves for the day entirely.
After filling in some customer service questionnaires after this, I was allowed to go home and then received a phone call about an hour later telling me I had gotten through to the next stage and that I was to come to the store for a final interview/assessment Friday.
Which was yesterday. I arrived at the store, which is now one of (if not the) UK's largest store - we are having a lot of building work done at the moment, hence the recruitment of staff, involving a Costa Coffee (there's my lunch breaks sorted :P), a massive play area for the children and mother and baby groups, which my manager informed me of. My manager just wanted to see what I was like in a store environment, so gave me some catalogues and baskets and placed me on meet and greet at the entrance, which I loved as I was meeting little children as well which is always lovely. Then I moved onto shop floor and did a similar role for about 10-15 minutes - again, these were all things I was used to at Clarks so it wasn't anything new for me so was quite easy.
I then had my interview with my now manager, which I thought was going to be a lot more intense then it was! She asked me some similar questions to what the interviewer asked me Wednesday but also we kept going off in tangents about life and things and we got on really well.
I then went home, and waited all afternoon for my phone to ring, biting all my right nails off in the process and feeling incredibly sick, breathless and ill, until half past 6 I finally got a phone call confirming my job! They said they didn't even manage to recruit everybody that they wanted to, and the process for recruitment they had to choose extremely carefully.
So obviously, I was a happy bunny, and I have to go there on Tuesday for four hours to start my training. The job is part time and temp, but she said on the phone I will have the opportunity to go permanent and perhaps in Kingston if I perform as well as I did today!
At the moment, I finally don't feel useless and unworthy, and that's an amazing feeling.
Being able to prove people wrong about my capabilities is also the most fantastic feeling in the world and I am so proud.
I had my best friends over last night (as my parents are still away) for celebratory extreme drunken times:
I hope this picture just sums it up in a nutshell really!
Thank you guys for always sticking by me and never giving up :)