How to Survive (and Thrive) at an Assessment Day

For someone who has never had a job interview never mind an assessment day at one of the world’s largest brands, Disney, the idea was daunting to say the least. Which is why I’ve compiled my top tips of what to expect to hopefully prepare you for the big day…

Research

Have both product AND business knowledge. For example in my case, yes I can name every song to every Disney film, however that doesn’t necessarily prove I’m the best person for the job. Knowing past and future campaigns/products, in addition to factors like turnover, who their CEO is, values and mission statement, allhow that you know the business inside and out.

Group work

I was put into a group of four people all of whom were luckily all really nice. Within the group one person should be appointed leader. If you feel comfortable with this, volunteer, however if someone else seems that bit more keen, step back and take on a different role.

Offer ideas, and if someone is a bit quieter in the group ask them their opinions too, this is another way to show leadership despite not being appointed ‘leader.’ Timekeeping is usually a forgotten role, so if nobody offers, agree take on that role too, as boring as it sounds.

Interviews

I will be truthful and say nothing can truly prepare you for an interview, I received 6 out of 8 role interviews on the day and despite all being for communications role, none were the same. However most asked the following;

  • Why did you choose your subject?
  • Why this company?
  • Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?

Here is your chance to truly stand out. Don’t be generic, show you are determined and have large goals. Say what inspires you, what are your values are and how they’re similar to the company you’re applying for. Get your interviewers name at the beginning (after you’ve shook their hand and gave them your best smile of course) and then repeat their name when you say goodbye to show you’ve truly listened.

Socialise with others

This is a big one, although these people are your competition they are also your potential future colleagues. Ask everyone from the other candidates to the interviewers their names and have meaningful conversations with them. Another tip I would suggest is turn your phone off and keep it off. In some cases, there are people assessing you whilst you aren’t actually actually being ‘assessed,’ such as during intervals and at dinner. Therefore make sure you’re on form at all times and not browsing through the Kardashian’s Instagram.

Be yourself

Yes I know this is a generic tip but it couldn’t be more true. As a girl from Sunderland, who is very obviously from the North-East, it was incredibly daunting to be up against the most well-spoken girls I’d ever heard. I told myself from the beginning that I was proud of getting this far but I had no chance of getting the job. However, I did (yes that’s right this Summer I’m moving to LONDON to work at the most magical company in the WORLD) and it was purely from being myself.

Have confidence, set your phone background to some inspirational Pinterest quote and tell yourself you can do this. As long as you’ve researched the most you can and done your utmost best that’s all you can do. Have fun with it, if it doesn’t go well it’s a learning curve and make sure you receive feedback at the end.

I wish you all the best of luck.

Love Aly x

 

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