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    Nargis786's Avatar
    Nargis786 Posts: 177, Reputation: 1
    Junior Member
     
    #1

    Jul 13, 2013, 09:26 AM
    Help with interview questions
    Hi,

    Couple of months ago I went to an interview for an administration position but unfortunately I did not get the position. But now I have another interview coming up for the same position but this time in a primary school. Please can you help me with these questions.

    However one of the questions they asked was:

    'if you were given a task with a deadline which needed to be completed for that day but you were unsure of how it should be completed, and your manager and line manager were not in the office as they were away in a meeting, how would you go about in dealing with this situation'

    Also I'm guessing another typical question that may be asked for a primary school setting is something like this:

    'if you were the only person left in the office, and there was a parent/visitor at reception wanting to talk to you, the phone was ringing and also the postman was waiting for a signature for a parcel. How would you deal with this situation'

    I am presuming the interviewer wants to know how you would deal with different things under pressure, and whether you can deal with it in a correct manor.
    My answer would be something like, letting the parent/visitor know that you will be with them shortly, and then sign off the parcel and if the phone is ringing then answer the phone.

    Is this a correct way of dealing with a situation such as this.

    Another question my friend said they could ask is,

    'if you were in reception with no-one else around and a child come up to you saying they are not feeling well. How would you deal with the situation'

    I am guessing you would first find out what is wrong with the child, e.g. if they have a stomach ache, and I would tell them to sit in reception for a while to see if they feel better, if it seems they are getting worse, notify a colleague who is experienced in this matter, i.e. teacher or school nurse/first aider and then call the child's parent if needed.
    Is this correct?

    Please can anyone also advise me on any other questions they may ask in a primary school setting for an administrator.

    Thank you
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 37,846, Reputation: 5428
    Jobs & Parenting Expert
     
    #2

    Jul 13, 2013, 09:45 AM
    'if you were the only person left in the office, and there was a parent/visitor at reception wanting to talk to you, the phone was ringing and also the postman was waiting for a signature for a parcel. How would you deal with this situation'

    I'd wave a greeting to the mailman and tell him I will be with him in a minute. I'd answer the phone (or if good voice mail, let it go to voice mail -- nothing worse than a ringing phone), take their name and number, and tell them I will call back within the hour. Then I would sign for the parcel, and meet with the waiting parent.

    Some interview questions (choose those that are more appropriate for primary) --

    http://www.schoolofeducators.com/wp-..._questions.pdf
    smearcase's Avatar
    smearcase Posts: 2,392, Reputation: 316
    Ultra Member
     
    #3

    Jul 13, 2013, 09:52 AM
    It will difficult for you to anticipate all the possible questions they might ask. Better to try and anticipate what their priorities are such as safety, professionalism, security (especially in that setting in this day and age), efficiency, chain of command etc.
    I recently helped a friend prepare for an interview with a large govt agency (where I retired from). We looked at the agency's mission statement and values and all the other references we had access to (often posted on their website) and then just formulated some statements that would indicate an understanding of their stated priorities. He got the position.
    If you can't find their priorities in writing, assess their responsibilities as you see it and brainstorm what priorities they should have.
    The second interviewer might go in an entirely different direction. Stick with general concepts instead of trying to figure out the exact questions. But one area I would give some thought would relate to security because that is a priority in all schools today.
    Nargis786's Avatar
    Nargis786 Posts: 177, Reputation: 1
    Junior Member
     
    #4

    Jul 13, 2013, 04:25 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Wondergirl View Post
    'if you were the only person left in the office, and there was a parent/visitor at reception wanting to talk to you, the phone was ringing and also the postman was waiting for a signature for a parcel. how would you deal with this situation'

    I'd wave a greeting to the mailman and tell him I will be with him in a minute. I'd answer the phone (or if good voice mail, let it go to voice mail -- nothing worse than a ringing phone), take their name and number, and tell them I will call back within the hour. Then I would sign for the parcel, and meet with the waiting parent.

    Some interview questions (choose those that are more appropriate for primary) --

    http://www.schoolofeducators.com/wp-..._questions.pdf
    Hi thanks for the help, can you also help me in regards to the ffirst interview question as thus is one question I was asked in a previous interview and found it difficult to answer
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 37,846, Reputation: 5428
    Jobs & Parenting Expert
     
    #5

    Jul 13, 2013, 04:38 PM
    'if you were given a task with a deadline which needed to be completed for that day but you were unsure of how it should be completed, and your manager and line manager were not in the office as they were away in a meeting, how would you go about in dealing with this situation'

    I'm guessing there are senior-level (i.e. experienced) teachers in the building. I would ask one of them. I should know all of them by that time and would know who would give me the most reliable and helpful information regarding SOP. Or another possibility might be to consult with the admin secretary. In any event I would ask a person more senior than I am for input. I wouldn't necessarily follow that person's advice to the letter, but at least would gain info to help me decide how best to do the task. I would probably put my own spin on it too. :)
    Luck0rN0t's Avatar
    Luck0rN0t Posts: 263, Reputation: 45
    Full Member
     
    #6

    Apr 15, 2014, 09:39 PM
    I think I would acknowledge the parent and ask if they would mind waiting a couple minutes so I could give them my full attention, as they would also probably be aware of the ringing phone and postman waiting and be understanding, but people first... and being ignored is the worst feeling ever, especially at your child's school. Then, I would probably indicate to the postman a 1 minute finger notice, then answer they phone and quickly ask them to hold for a moment, then go sign for the parcel and thank the postal person, return to the phone and try to either make the conversation short, or if it were a lengthy issue, ask if I could call them back in a few minutes... with additional information or resources they need.

    Letting it go to vm is also an option, depending upon the environment, time of day, expectations of the school, etc.

    Or, a slightly less personal way would be to acknowledge the parent and let them know you'll be right with them, wave the postal person over to your desk, as all you will be doing is signing, while answering the phone at the same time. Then, get back to the waiting parent as soon as possible...


    For the first question, I would have gathered the requirements when the task was first assigned and asked as many pertinent questions regarding the task as I could think of so that I was clear on what was expected and what the end goal was... ask if there were any specific requirements that the person wanted or did not want and if any sort of similar task was already documented. Then, if I was still unsure, I would see if any other persons I trusted were available, ask their input... proceed with the task as it made sense to me as I understood it, and as I would want it done with my understanding of the outcome expected.

    I might even come up with a couple of options... if the original was not exactly up to snuff... and offer those as options if the first run was not acceptable, be ready with a backup plan or two, or even your own suggestions, such as... If I understand what you want accomplished, here is how I would do it and why..

    I completely agree with the post suggesting that you research the organization and their mission statement and try to focus on what it is the employer is looking for in an employee... what skills, personality traits etc. that you can bring to the table to help them in the direction of what they are trying to accomplish. Kind of like a role reversal... if you were in their shoes, what would you want to hear from the person you were going to hire? What if you were hiring a child care/housekeeper for your own home... what qualities, traits, expectations would you have?

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