Phil Morgan, Director of Policy and Communications at the CIPR answers some common interview questions to provide inspiration for PR graduates.
If you were an animal, what animal would you be and why?
Something armor-plated and hard to kill.
What can you offer us that another candidate couldn’t?
No one else has my combination of wit, insight and modesty.
Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?
Continuing to build what I hope will be a successful career.
Strengths: Loyalty, dedication, commitment to professional development and improvement
Weaknesses: Personal admin. Tendency to work long hours/weekends, steak and kidney pie
Me: loyal, able and reliable
My Boss: loyal, able and reliable
My Best friend: Useless prop forward
Books, Radio, the internet, Television
The CIPR Conversation (indispensible), BBC News, The Guardian
During a 5 year stint as chairman of my rugby club, I established a mini and youth rugby section. This was a major effort involving recruiting and training volunteer coaches and administrators and was part of a long term, ongoing strategy of club renewal, which I also developed and lead and which saw the club moving to new grounds. The process drew on work related skills including lobbying the local authority, gaining wider stakeholder support, media relations and fund raising. In my final year as Chairman I won the “Pro-Active London Volunteer of the Year” Award and was presented with a certificate in recognition of the achievement by the Mayor of London. The youth section continues to flourish, with well over 100 children aged 5-15 playing rugby for the club every Sunday during the season. I developed my love of the game playing minis and youth and I am very pleased to have been able give young people the chance to play rugby.
Tell me about a challenge that you’ve faced and how you’ve overcome that challenge
Among my greatest challenges has also been my greatest achievement. See above. My general advice for answering this question is to suggest remembering two quotes – “Never give in — never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.” (Winston Churchill, 1941) and “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” (Samuel Beckett, 1983) – Don’t quit, keep trying, keep going, keep learning from your mistakes and your experiences and show that you are always willing to do so.