There is No Need to Create Trails!

In all my years in Fire Service, one thing stands out and shocks me again and again. I cannot believe what many candidates will freely and willingly reveal! Let me explain:

Often, candidates call me after an oral board, background check, or psychological interview. They are concerned by some information they have revealed. Usually, this is related to something from their past.

Did you hear that correctly – I SAID SOMETHING FROM THEIR PAST.

My first question is, who besides you knows the ins and outs of this past event. Whom could they contact that could tell them this information? The usual answer is no one. And this, folks, is precisely my point. There is no one they can contact that would know anything about this information.

So here is the real question – Why do so many candidates create a trail and open a can of worms which could keep them from getting their dream job? If the department is not giving a polygraph test, why do so many offer answers to questions never asked? Many feel they must be honest to a fault. Some say that they were hammered with questions and believed they had to say something. My response is this – Please, spare me.

Here is my advice – You better think twice before leading your interviewer to a problem that doesn’t make any difference. To be more specific, read this from our “Conquer the Psychological Interview” Special Report:

Volunteering Information

“A doctor who interviews a candidate that is open, honest, forthcoming, has common sense, and answers all questions probably considers them as okay. Many candidates want this job so badly that they will do almost anything to get it. I am told some of the things that candidates said during their interviews. I’ve asked, “How did you get these people to say these things?” The answer was, we just asked them, and they volunteered the information. ”

Before you volunteer information, it is critical that you think before you speak. Don’t ramble. Be articulate. Your interviewer knows that this is how you’re going to be in the field. Believe it or not, this is part of the job interview. Every answer makes an impression of who you will be as a firefighter. Be prepared to audition for the role of being a firefighter. Know your strong points. Be ready to demonstrate that you are a team player.

One of our candidates was going to a chief’s oral. He knew one of the questions was going to be, “Is there anything we should know about?” He wanted to say something about being eliminated from hiring by another department because his polygraph was questionable due to previous marijuana use. My question was, “What do you think your chances are of being considered by this department if you said that?” Not good was the reply.

My advice was that this was not the time to bring something like that up. If anything, it would be discussed in the background check. The candidate didn’t bring it up. It never came up with the background investigator. A polygraph was not given. I saw him receive his badge. This candidate was hired again by the department where he wanted to work. I witnessed that badge pinning too. The defense rests!

Absolutely nothing counts ’til you have the badge. Nothing!

Captain Bob