What is a group interview? Imagine: You are led into a room with six other candidates contending for the same job. After settling in, more people begin to arrive. Someone, perhaps the employer, stands to introduce himself and explain what to expect. He is dressed in a peculiar manner adorned with a tabard. He begins to proclaim the names of the combatants then throws you a lance. This is a mêlée! “Aaaannd….Go” he yells.

Wouldn’t that be scary? Lucky for us we live in the 2000s where we no longer have to wear armour and fight to the death for a position or rank. We would choose a group interview over a mêlée for a position any day! Agreed? Although group interviews can be unnerving, understanding more about them may ease your anxiety; and remember, at least you are not fighting to the death!

You can certainly expect to be in a room with other candidates and have the hiring manager introduce himself and present about the company. You can also expect to be questioned in front of the group and have your behaviour observed during activities. Essentially a group interview is an opportunity for the employer to see how you stand out, how you work with others, how you problem solve, or perhaps how you take a leadership role. So, you want to ensure you bring a proactive, positive attitude; a big smile; articulate, clear communication; a calm, thoughtful demeanor; and great aesthetics. Group interviews are often conducted for highly customer service driven positions, high stress or fast-paced positions, or positions that require extraordinary team work.

Thus, knowing the reasons to conduct group interviews, as well as the strategies to get the edge over your competition, will equip you with the needed tools to secure a position within the company and hopefully calm your nerves before entering the ring, ahem, room.