I recently spent the morning with students at Ken Stimpson School for their Mock Interviews, the students were 14-15 years old and I was interviewing them to work in my clothes shop. Each interview was around 10 minutes and then we spent 5 minutes giving feedback to help them with future interviews.
To start, I have been to this school many times and have always found these students to be incredibly polite, hardworking and mature – the Mock Interview day was no different and it was a pleasure to spend time helping this school and these students.
What really surprised me was the difference is maturity and confidence between the boys and the girls; at times it felt like I was interviewing 25 year old girls and 10 year old boys. While the girls were confident, engaging and prepared from the get-go, most of the boys were nervous and really had to be pushed to answer the questions and it wasn’t until a few minutes in that they relaxed and their confidence and personality came through.
Interestingly one of the questions was to give an example of a problem they have solved; nearly every student I interviewed gave an example of a maths problem which I found really interesting. They didn’t see breaking up a friends argument, time management, money management or similar as a problem.
However, what I really learnt from the students on that day was their attitude to life and I feel this is through the teaching at the school; when asked for a weakness and how they overcome it many said, in different ways and words, that sometimes they worry about what others think about them but they overcome this by thinking that as long as they are being the best version of themselves that they can be then so what?
This is a brilliant lesson to all of us and definitely something I need to work harder at as this is my weakness!
If you haven’t worked with a local school or even the Skills Service before it is definitely something I recommend; you’ll be amazed and inspired by those you meet and this will affect you at work in a very positive way!
Photo was taken by Kerry a Life Coach and is of herself, Charlotte from Tesco and me.