In anticipation of my summer internship interviews, I have decided to reflect on past interviews and prepare for future interviews. Before coming to college, my interviews were not very in depth as they consisted of interviews for a lifeguarding job or being a camp counselor. However, my PR interviews proved very interesting.
I had 3 phone interviews last year because I go to school in Boston, but I was planning on working in New York City. However, one of the phone interviews was with a firm in Boston. I found it interesting that my New York City phone interviews were much longer and more in depth than the one I had for my Boston position. However, the standard questions were asked in all 3 interviews: “Why PR?” “What interests you about PR?” “When did you decide to pursue PR?” And they wanted to know about the main topic on my cover letter, the PR conference that I help plan for PRSSA.
However, there were some questions that are trickier. I was asked by one company if I was at a nail salon and had to pick up a magazine to read while my nails dried, which magazine would I pick up and why? I was also asked in depth questions about the subject of Public Relations, but at the time I had not taken any public relations classes as I was only a freshman (at Boston University, you do not take PR classes until your sophomore year).
How do you prepare for questions like this? I know that I had full knowledge of the company and even kept the website open on my laptop during the interview in case I had to reference something. But how do you answer these types of questions without making up an answer that is obviously fake to the interviewer?
I am more confident as my experience is PR has grown since the last time I went through interviews. I have had an internship, taken 2 PR classes, and taken a more active role in the Public Relations Student Society of America and its networking opportunities with the Public Relations Society of America. As long as you feel comfortable with yourself, have your portfolio prepared, and research the company extensively before entering the HR’s office or picking up your phone for the interview, success is on your way.