Tuesday, January 24, 2012

How to Interview Well When Sick.

Well, I am getting ready now for my fourth PA school interview!  Wow, what a process.  It has been a fun ride!

Armory Square in Syracuse.  Though it was not as sunny when I visited.

My last interview in Syracuse was just three weeks ago in early January.  I flew from warm Louisiana to cold, snowy Syracuse with a bad cold.  I felt miserable the entire trip and was very glad to arrive back home after the weekend excursion.
But I was even happier when I got an acceptance call from Le Moyne College a few days later!

So here I go again.

Now I am in Buffalo--where it is cold and snowy, and I am preparing for my next interview. The cold I had in Syracuse has migrated down into my chest and I have a horrible cough.  I think this could be a good sign!

Being sick for an interview can be to your advantage 

Here is how to make it work for you:

Though I would never recommend being sick, here are some pros to interviewing while sick:
  • If forces you to focus on only the matters at hand.
  • It down plays the sympathetic nervous system and so decreases the "nerve factor" (as one of my mentors pointed out).
  • It's a good excuse to keep your water bottle, chapstick, tissues and lozenges on the table at all times.
  • You may not be the spiffiest version of yourself, but you will certainly be the truest most authentic version of who you are.

The cons are obvious:

  • You are sick.
  • And if you are on medication, a celebratory glass of wine or beer after the interview may be ill advised.

Tips for interviewing while sick:

(Some of these will apply when not sick as well!)
  • Use it as an excuse to be SUPER organized with your personal items, clothing, toiletries etc. ESPECIALLY when traveling.  And travel light.
  • Streamline all your processes.
  • It is also a great excuse to go to bed very early the night before your interview.
  • Do not take any OTC meds that you have not taken before.  Be sure they don't make you sleepy or groggy.
  • Focus on what you know and stick with it.
  • Save your voice as much as possible while still socializing and meeting with your fellow applicants and students.
  • Carry a travel bottle of hand sanitizer to use.  You will be shaking a lot of hands.  You don't want to hand off your illness.
  • Smile through it.
  • If you choke or cough during your interview, mention briefly that you are sick--but never belabor the point.  Just proceed on bravely. 
  • And for goodness sake, if you have a GI illness--wear a Depends!
  • Keep your sense of humor.
  • During your interview day focus on others and not on how bad you feel.
  • Don't take yourself too seriously, but do take your mission of getting into PA school seriously.
  • Remember there will be plenty of time to wallow in tissues and self pity later back in your hotel room!  So chin up!

    If this interview goes well, then I will definitely write a book and patent the process of how to interview while sick and succeed!  Keep an eye out for my new title--
      "Get Sick, Interview and Get in!"

    My recipe for Ginger tea:

    This ginger tea has powers for clearing out chest congestion that out rival powerful pharmaceuticals.  Really! I learned this from a friend of my mother's years ago when I was incapacitated with pneumonia for several months despite drugs, treatment by a pulmonologist, breathing treatments and bed rest. 
    Ginger tea made the difference for me!

    Ginger tea made from freshly grated ginger
    Fresh ginger root
    honey, agave syrup or sugar
    cayenne pepper
    fresh squeezed lemon juice

    Grate fresh ginger root (a William Sonoma Japanese ginger grater will save your knuckles here) and place in a small sauce pan with approximately one cup of water.  Bring to a boil and simmer for about 10 minutes.
    Strain this liquid, discarding the fibrous remains of the ginger, into your cup.
    Sweeten with a couple tsp. honey, sugar or agave syrup.  Otherwise this is a quite sharp bitter concoction.
    Then add a dash (or more if you are Cajun or just adventurous) of cayenne pepper.  Do not omit this step--the capsaicin in cayenne is an important component here.
    Finally, add a squeeze of lemon juice to your tea.
    Drink this tea as hot as possible for maximum benefit.

    Note:  Get your husband/wife, boyfriend/girlfriend or other benign family member to make this for you if you are too sick to do it--it is even better then!

    1 comment:

    1. Tks very much for your post.

      Avoid surprises — interviews need preparation. Some questions come up time and time again — usually about you, your experience and the job itself. We've gathered together the most common questions so you can get your preparation off to a flying start.

      You also find all interview questions at link at the end of this post.

      Source: Interview Questions & Answers:

      Best rgs