Interview Tips for the Post Holiday Season

By Jana Kleinman

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Tis' the season for warm beverages, vanilla iced treats, and quality time well spent with family and friends. As 2015 approaches, many job seekers will walk through the doors of a prospective employer hoping for the best possible outcome. In addition to the usual and (and sometimes unusual) interview questions, candidates may receive an ice breaker such as:


"How did you spend the holiday season?"

I encourage applicants to take this question just as seriously as every other interview question asked. Why? Your response will demonstrate a personality trait which might possibly enhance your perspective employer's opinion of you. For example:

Q: How did you spend your holiday season?

A: Well, I ate a lot, slept in and caught up on a lot of movies in the theater I've missed."

This response would convey that you enjoy your off-time in a mostly sedentary manner while being entertained. There is nothing wrong with this response, especially if the perspective employer is a movie fanatic. It may actually be a great selling point. 


Here is another example below:

Q: How did you spend the holiday season?

A: Well, in addition to enjoying delicious food with family and going to the movie theater a few times, I caught up on much needed rest and made time to organize my apartment. I know it doesn't sound exciting, but I like to stay as organized as possible at home.

This demonstrates that in addition to enjoying your downtime with fun activities, you also place a value on organization. This is a quality that will leave an impression on any employer (whether they are a movie buff, or not).


Here's one more example:

Q: How did you spend your holiday season?
A: The holidays were great! I was fortunate enough to be a guest whereas I usually host. I didn't have to cook, or clean at all and it was delightful!


Q: How did you spend your holiday season?
A: The holidays were great! I was fortunate enough to be a guest whereas I usually host. With the extra time on my hands, I took my children ice skating!

While neither example is wrong, the second example demonstrates that time is a valuable resource to you. Prospective employers want to hire staff who are energetic, and can handle working in a fast paced environment. did YOU spend the holiday season?

It sounds like an informal question, but please remember you're not chatting with a friend. Everything you say conveys meaning, come out swinging in 2015!


Best Wishes for a Healthy, Happy & Prosperous New Year!

Jana Kleinman - Creative & Media Talent Manager/Staffing Golden Retriever

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