Based on the title of this post, you may think that EssaySnark is just being friendly.
Oh no, ma cherie.
We are talking about interviewing!!!
There are so many basic questions that can so thoroughly trip up an unsuspecting (aka unprepared) BSer.
Your interview, as you know, is your time to shine.
As we’ve been covering ad nauseum on the blahg lately, you need to PREPARE for this opportunity.
That means, practicing some answers to some questions that you can reasonably expect to be served.
It also means practicing for answers you cannot prepare for.
So how do you do that?
By practicing as much as you can!
Sometimes people end up overpreparing, to the point where they sound like a robot with every single question they’re asked.
Sometimes people overprepare in the sense of overthinking their answers.
When asked, “What do you do for fun?” do you answer something about how you are trying to cure poverty? Do you say something about how you’ve been mentoring this 12-year-old after school every week? Do you talk about how you’re raising money to pay for tuition for some children in the favelas?
Or do you talk about stuff you actually like to do?
Like play video games.
Like go out to eat with your friends.
Like host a big barbeque at your house on game day.
Which do you think is the “right” answer to use?
EssaySnark says, answer with something that’s real.
When we hear someone in an interview situation answer this type of question with a “Look at me, aren’t you IMPRESSED by this??” type of response, we die a little bit inside.
Please don’t try so hard, people.
Questions like this are not meant to trick you. The schools aren’t looking for you to impress them with how much of a do-gooder you are.
Sure, if you really are a do-gooder, then they care about that! But that’ll almost definitely come through quite naturally in how you’re able to answer the other questions that they ask.
Your interviewer will be looking at your resume. Your do-gooder activities are likely featured quite prominently there. Your interviewer is most likely going to be asking about those automatically, especially if they’re really unusual or interesting or distinctive in some way.
So, you can trust the process. As you prepare and you practice for the types of questions you’ll be served up, then certainly don’t ignore questions like “What’s your greatest leadership experience?” or “Tell me about a time when you’ve been effective working in a team” and look for examples from those extracurricular or charitable endeavors that might lend themselves to discussion in such a context. Do some brainstorming and some reflection on all that you’ve done in this volunteer work you’ve been participating in over the past year. See what examples you can come up with that will let you present a robust answer to those questions, pulled from the domain of your do-gooder work.
But don’t force such a topic into a question it doesn’t fit for. Yes, most people enjoy the volunteer work they do, or they wouldn’t do it (if you don’t enjoy it, then are you doing it only so that you can be perceived as the type of person who volunteers?? hmmm, that sounds a little off, when it’s the realm of authenticity we’re considering).
When someone asks you “What do you do for fun?” then we hope you’ll answer with something that’s actually FUN for you, that you get excited about, that you wish you could spend more time doing.
If that’s video games, great! You can answer with that! Nothing to be ashamed of, especially if you’re really good at them.
If it’s hiking, great! Add to your answer by telling your interviewer the most incredible hike you went on, or where you went recently. Give it some color and pizzazz. Don’t just say “hiking” but say, “Well, I was sore all last Sunday because on Saturday I went further than I’ve ever gone before, we went out to Grizzly Peak and I did 22 miles that day. I could hardly move off my couch afterwards!”
If you’re a foodie, great! Tell the interviewer the most adventurous food you’ve eaten, or that you’re an expert in IPAs, or that you know the best place for hot chocolate in Nashville.
Whatever it is. Make your answer concrete, and real.
That’s how you make an impression on your interviewer.
You don’t do it by trying to make them impressed.
Pick up EssaySnark’s MBA Interviewing Guide for more tips and guidance on how to prepare for this all-important opportunity!
Hmmm how strange – apparently we’ve written about this exact “What do you do for fun?” interview question before!!