This story about Ken is continued from the previous section. He had questions that were not directly answered in my interview guide.
Ken, is having a difficult time getting hired for a management position because he has not worked in management for the past nine years.
He is also looking for sample interview questions and answers to help him on is up coming job interview.
Don’s Answer to Ken This is a very interesting and true story brought to you by Job Interview Tools.
Ken has owned two very profitable business in the past that eventually failed. He needed a job and all he could find was technical service job paying much less that he was making as a business owner.
He is a highly skilled manager and after nine years of working lower level jobs he would like to get back in to management, but feels that his previous nine years as a service tech will make getting a management position much more difficult. Let’s look at his interview questions.
Ken’s Job Interview Preparation Questions – Part 1 of 4
I need help preparing for an interview. I owned a business that I started in the late 1985. It was a corporation as of record I was Vice President of Operations. My primary functions were to develop the business, oversee daily operations and service manager over approximately ten employees. My brother originally put up the capital to get the business off the ground.
The business was a pay telephone business and we eventually built it up to the point where it was very profitable grossing over a million dollars a year with little or no debt.
By 1993-94 we noticed revenues decreasing due to reduced usage which was related to the increase of cell phone popularity, so we started looking for another venture. Both of our boys at the time where heavily involved with the new craze of roller hockey.
We realized that there was hard to find the equipment needed and no real knowledge from the big box’s of what was needed or how to fit the kids with proper equipment to play the sport. So we opened our first specialty store in 95.
The first store was a great success right of the bat and had a hard time just keeping the shelves stocked. It looked to us that this was going to be another cash cow so we started expanding with multiple stores to a total of five by 97. Then we found ourselves in a cash crunch with being able to stock five stores. So when approached in 96 by a competitor to buy the pay phone business at top dollar we sold.
To cut to the chase, we realized the mistake we made of trying to grow to fast, and had to start closing some stores. From 96 to the end in 99 we never put ourselves on any salary with hopes that it would pay off down the road, and basically depended on our savings to survive.
By 1999 we had to close the last store losing everything we had with the exception of our homes. Eventually had to sell the big house and new cars and start over with just the equity from the home. It was a hard lesson to learn.
Prior to closing the last store in 1999, I was sending out resumes and doing everything possible to find something equivalent to what I was doing and the only thing I could find was a position in Atlanta with Verizon as a service tech starting at $35k a year, as desperate as I was at the time I took it and moved to Atlanta in 2000.
I worked with Verizon until they closed my division 2006 making it up to about $50k a year. I was out of work for six months until I landed my current interview with Pitney Bowes as a Customer Service Rep making about $55k. All along I have been trying to get back into a managers position paying closer to what I was accustomed to in the range $70-75k per year.
I have had several interviews and have yet been successful in landing the higher paying job. I know one thing that hurts is I am not a college graduate and I am 55 years old.
That brings me to date and why I purchased your job interview preparation interview questions and answers. I’m preparing for an interview I have with a company that has a similar business model as did the pay phone business.
They are looking for a Regional Service Manager in the area. The job description is very much inline with what I did at my business, with the exception of them stating in the description; Bachelors Degree Desired. I have had a phone interview which I guess went well and am meeting with the Operations Manager on April 3rd.
On my resume, a one recruiter advised me not to disclose my ownership of the either business. I have been showing on my resume that I was Operations Manager or Service Manager of the pay phone company and have recently decided to delete Skaters Edge in my resume being that I never received compensation, and the company was in my wife’s name.
I have combined the years from 1988 to 1999 as being with Advanced Pay Phone which is somewhat true even though assets were sold in 96 , I was still receiving occasional compensation as a consultant by the new owner. Is this a bad idea?
I do know that if I pass this next interview they have mentioned they will be doing a background check, and I am not sure how detailed that would be or if it will show me as being owner of Advanced Pay Phone being the Corporation is dissolved.
I am torn whether or not to be forthright and honest about my ownership with Advanced Pay Phone, maybe perceived as a mom and pop operation or if it is more meaningful to have held that position with a company that was not owned by myself. I rather be upfront, unfortunately I think this has hurt me in the past.
How do I over come the fact that I have been working not as a manager for the last nine years but as a service tech making much less than what I had in the past and much less than what the position I am applying for would pay?
I guess my concern is making to many changes in my work history that can’t be verified would raise eye brows. The company I am interviewing with next week said they use an outside party to do their background checks. Do you have any experience with what resources they have and how deep do they go. I’m concerned they may have access to check pass income tax returns, credit reports, or the company might request a recent w-2 or pay stub.
Maybe I am over analyzing this but, I would be hesitant to combine my last to positions into Advance for failure to have adequate validation. If you have any personal experience with these research companies, and what exactly their process is, I would appreciate your insight. Continued … in Part II.
Read Don’s Answer Comments in the Interview Guide section.
You have just read a transcript of real problem posed by Ken, who need help preparing for an interview and is having a difficult time getting hired for a management position because he has not worked in management for the past nine years.
Get job interview preparation advice inside the Complete Interview Answer Guide. Don shows job seekers how to answer interview questions. The 201+ sample answers in the guide will quickly help you craft your own professional answers for ALL types ofinterview questions for any occupation.
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