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First ever interview

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Found 27th Mar
**Mods if this needs to be edited in any way, please can you do that rather than deleting it? Thankyou**

So as I posted before about job searching, I’ve managed to get an interview. I’m nervous and excited at the same time.

However, I’ve never had an interview before and I am an Autistic person with severe anxiety, and so I don’t know what to do. I just had a 10 minute phone call with them and the only thing I really asked about was whether I was allowed to have someone accompany me (they said no).

Can anyone give me some pointers? It’s for a care home housekeeping job. Do I say about my diagnosis’? What would be the appropriate dress code? How long do interviews generally take?

Sorry for all the questions, and thanks to anyone who can reply. My first job I did not have anything close to an interview for, let alone anything with strangers, so I’m a bit worried.
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The thing I would say is don't be afraid to say you are very nervous and that it is your first interview (or lie and say first in a long time). This will change their attitude and expectations. When it's out on the table you will relax a little. It also explains nervous behaviour which may be perceived as something else.

Try and make eye contact or look at the part of the nose between their eyes at least a little, I know what a struggle it is but it shows engagement.

Don't be afraid to mention your condition if you want and talk of it as a positive and don't be ashamed, be positive.

Just some suggestions, so don't over think them. Good luck.
41 Comments
Post looks fine @Mechtup good luck at the interview!
Good luck at the interview.

Sorry i cant help but I’m wishing you the best of luck.
I know you’re going for a housekeeping job, but this might help

google.co.uk/amp…iew
The thing I would say is don't be afraid to say you are very nervous and that it is your first interview (or lie and say first in a long time). This will change their attitude and expectations. When it's out on the table you will relax a little. It also explains nervous behaviour which may be perceived as something else.

Try and make eye contact or look at the part of the nose between their eyes at least a little, I know what a struggle it is but it shows engagement.

Don't be afraid to mention your condition if you want and talk of it as a positive and don't be ashamed, be positive.

Just some suggestions, so don't over think them. Good luck.
We always ask beforehand if there are any conditions that you might wish to make us aware of prior to the interview so we can take them into account. It helps to try and understand how candidates approach things. If they don’t feel comfortable talking to us about it we also offer them the opportunity to contact the recruitment team afterwards to let us know.

id be upfront about it, especially if you suffer from anxiety, it’s likely that the best version of you won’t be in that room and it would be a shame to miss out just because the recruiter misunderstood the situation.

re : dress code, smart, business casual should do it. Not sure if your a mon or woman so can’t be anymore specific than that
Well done on getting an interview, regarding what to wear I would suggest smart casual, no jeans.
Take your time answering any questions and if you don’t know the exact answer to a question, don’t worry be honest with them, they’d prefer you to say sorry I’m not sure rather than trying to blag an answer. Just tell them about yourself and why you think you’d be the ideal candidate, think of things like conscientious worker, attention to detail, flexible attitude to extra duties, quick to learn, etc.
Being as the job is in a care home environment you understand the environment is focused around the residents and you could then use your diagnosis in a positive way saying that you work best with a regular structured daily routine.
They might ask you if you have any questions. Ask them what exactly your duties would be, how many team members would there be and what to expect the first few days regarding any training
The interview may be only 20 mins, just smile when you meet them.
Good luck, we’re rooting for you.
Edited by: "Toptrumpet" 27th Mar
Find out as much about the company as you can beforehand; how many homes they have, how long they've been operating, any areas of specialisation.

Do explain your autism, areas where you may need support but also emphasise your areas of strength. Ask about any in house training.

Dress code, smart. No jeans, no trainers, if wearing a hat make sure to remove it before you sit down. Turn your mobile off.

Hope it goes well for you.
Do your research.
Then do some more research!

Find out who their CEO is, what their year-on-year growth has been in recent history.
When they were founded and any important milestones in their history.
Get a feel for their products or services.

Even if you don't feel like you've taken this info in, it'll all come flooding back once you start talking

Seriously, do your research.
You'll feel so much better by having that knowledge in your back pocket.

Then, in the interview - make lots of eye contact and try to keep answers succinct and to the point.
Try not to waffle!

And good luck, you'll be fine
Edited by: "HutchAW" 27th Mar
I also suffer with anxiety, and when I go for interviews I take a notebook. Beforehand, write down a few questions to ask (see above) and a few notes about yourself so if you do feel like you're clamming up, you can refer to the notes. As for dress code, a smart shirt, chinos/trousers, and some brouges or loafers.
Good luck
i don't get nervous at interviews because i detach myself and don't let it become too important. i make myself think that it is not the end of the world if i don't get the job and i will go to another interview if this one is not successful, but that it will give me experience for the next.

the trick to interviews is to be confident in yourself. think of all the positive things about yourself and all the things that you can offer your employer. put yourself in the position of employing someone for that job, what would you want that person to be, then be that person at the interview.

make eye contact with the interviewer and smile if you can where appropriate. get to the interview about 30 minutes early and walk around the area to calm your nerves and get some fresh air into you before you enter the building. it also allows you to familiarise yourself with the surrounding area. if you are familiar with the area, it makes things less daunting i find.

if i am asked a question that i do not know the answer to, i say that i don't know the answer rather try to blag it as i think it makes it sound worse when you talk nonsense and it is obvious that you are doing so.

don't talk in a convoluted fashion, you will bore the interviewer to death, if not confuse them. be precise and to the point with your answers, but obviously don't use monosyllable answers like yes, no, may be.

as you are autistic, they will want to know how this affects your work and the way you interact with other people at work. it is more than likely that they will ask you about your autism so think of how to explain to them in a way that makes them feel you will be able to carry the job and get on with the people there with your autism.

interview length will vary. i find that if they are interested in you, the interview will go on longer as they would like to find out more about you. it could be anything from 30 minutes to 1.5 hour.

they will often give you an opportunity to ask them questions at the end of the interview. use this time to ask them questions that show how enthusiastic you are about the job, so ask specific questions about what the job entails. what they expect of you. tell them that this is your first interview to get the sympathy vote, and tell them how important getting this job is to you.

with regard to dress, it depends if you are male or female

lastly, good luck and if you don't get the job, there is another one waiting for you
Thanks for the replies everyone

I now have what to wear planned and what to research (thanks everyone)

However filling in the form I’ve now come across two issues and I was wondering if anyone could help:
-For the first reference, it asks for organisation and then underneath where you write organisation it asks address. Is this the company’s address of the referencers address?
-It’s asking for two references but I’ve only had one job. Would volunteering be counted as a second reference? If not, can anyone suggest any others?

Reading the forms is making me feel anxious and it’s made the chances of getting the job very slim (regulation 21, health and social care act 2008- I understand your importance but you’ve ruined me ).

I mean, knowing the career one of the applications wants meant my chances were already reduced anyway. I’m just bracing myself for disappointment yet somehow still letting myself stress over it . Trying to focus on the positive side either way
Mechtup51 m ago

Thanks for the replies everyone :)I now have what to wear planned and what …Thanks for the replies everyone :)I now have what to wear planned and what to research (thanks everyone) :)However filling in the form I’ve now come across two issues and I was wondering if anyone could help:-For the first reference, it asks for organisation and then underneath where you write organisation it asks address. Is this the company’s address of the referencers address?-It’s asking for two references but I’ve only had one job. Would volunteering be counted as a second reference? If not, can anyone suggest any others?Reading the forms is making me feel anxious and it’s made the chances of getting the job very slim (regulation 21, health and social care act 2008- I understand your importance but you’ve ruined me ).I mean, knowing the career one of the applications wants meant my chances were already reduced anyway. I’m just bracing myself for disappointment yet somehow still letting myself stress over it . Trying to focus on the positive side either way


Address of referee so they can write to them. They will only do this if you get the job. You can put the volunteer referee and state that is volunteer. These only become important if you get the job.

Treat the interview as an adventure. Even if you have no chance of getting the job, it will be a great experience to have been to an interview and see what it is all about and how you bahave at interview. It will be a self discovery session for you.

Be proud of the fact that you have made it to the interview at all. They must have been interested enough after speaking to you on the phone to invite you in. People dont waste time interviewing you if they dont like how you sound over the phone.

You can get job offer when you think you got no chance and be rejected when you think you did really well at interview. You can never tell what will happen, which is part of the adventure
For the references, it will be the address of where they can write to the person you are wanting to use, so if your current employer then the place where you work or maybe head office, you wouldn't normally use their personal address. For a second reference, any voluntary work could be a good option as long as you know the organisation will provide a good reference. I'm not sure what you mean by the second part of your last post? For the interview try and think of some examples of when you've done good pieces of work in your current job, as they may ask for specific examples based on different scenarios e.g. can you tell me a time when you've delivered excellent customer service or can you tell me a time when you've had to deal with a difficult/challenging situation. Practice these examples, say them out loud, sounds ridiculous as you'll be talking to yourself but it helps to know the bits that don't sound right so you can change words around so that you feel comfortable and confident in what you're saying. As others have said try and relax as much as you can, you will be nervous, this is normal and the interviewers should understand this but try and turn this to your advantage if you really start to struggle by saying how nervous you are because of how much you really want the job. Good luck!!
The first reference box you put in the Organisation and the Organisation’s full address.
the second referee can be anyone that has known you for say at least two years, that know you well enough to write about you in the context of the job requirements. It doesn’t have to be from the place you volunteered at, it could be a tutor, a neighbour you used to cut the grass for, a family friend, really someone that can vouch for your good character and will support your application.
Don’t feel anxious about the forms, you have already been selected from other applicants to attend the interview and the interviewers have already have decided that you fulfil the criteria by getting to this point. Re-read the forms tomorrow and make a note in the margin which bits are worrying you and why. Then think how you can get round these points. You might have just overthought the criteria. You’ve as much chance as anyone else in the interview, think positively - you’ve obviously got self worth and drive to go out and get a second job and that’s twice as much as some others. You want to do well in life and there is no reason why you can’t have the opportunity. Don’t overthink things. Just fill out the forms as best you can, if need be get a tutor to help you or whoever is your go to at college/Uni.
Edited by: "Toptrumpet" 27th Mar
Feeling nervous and excited at the same time is a completely normal sign that you care about what you are doing.

References I would place both the worked and volunteer roles. The volunteer position is a big positive as it demonstrates that you are not a type of person that sits idle but would rather be proactive in both advancing yourself whilst contributing.

Good luck
Edited by: "Bertz99" 28th Mar
Thanks again everyone for the replies

Starting the research now as I came home stressed today. I doubt I’ll remember much but I’m still doing it anyway. Thankfully it’s only 4 things I need to search up (one of them unnecessary).

My coping strategy is to not let myself think about the bad things that could happen, which honestly isn’t beneficial so I’ve been trying to force myself to think about it.

Will update (if anyone wants) on what happens tomorrow (and whether I get the job, when I know)
Edited by: "Mechtup" 28th Mar
Mechtup16 m ago

Thanks again everyone for the replies Starting the research now as I …Thanks again everyone for the replies Starting the research now as I came home stressed today. I doubt I’ll remember much but I’m still doing it anyway. Thankfully it’s only 4 things I need to search up (one of them unnecessary).My coping strategy is to not let myself think about the bad things that could happen, which honestly isn’t beneficial so I’ve been trying to force myself to think about it.Will update (if anyone wants) on what happens tomorrow (and whether I get the job, when I know)


All the very best of luck tomorrow.
We will be rooting for you Mechtup

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Just had my interview I mentioned how I had Autism during it. Initially it didn’t go well because the first question threw me off, but after that it was fine. I felt it actually went pretty well.

Apparently I’ll find out tomorrow. Trying not to be too positive because I don’t want to get my hopes up. Besides, it was good for the experience.

They worded the questions in a different way to how I was expecting so those were my weak points (they asked “what would we be missing if we weren’t to employ you?” instead of “what are your strengths?”).

A lot of my answers were weak, but considering I only had two days with no previous interviews/ practice interviews, it’s better than nothing (I also prewarned them that this was my first interview).

I reminded myself all day about eye contact, but failed to do so until nearer the end, which is obviously not good.

They had a cat in the same room in the chair next to me, which kind of helped even though I didn’t actually have any contact with it.

Oh and another thing: where I was dropped off I managed to get mud on my clean polished shoes, and looking at them now, they’re bad
Mechtup12 m ago

Just had my interview I mentioned how I had Autism during it. Initially …Just had my interview I mentioned how I had Autism during it. Initially it didn’t go well because the first question threw me off, but after that it was fine. I felt it actually went pretty well.Apparently I’ll find out tomorrow. Trying not to be too positive because I don’t want to get my hopes up. Besides, it was good for the experience.They worded the questions in a different way to how I was expecting so those were my weak points (they asked “what would we be missing if we weren’t to employ you?” instead of “what are your strengths?”).A lot of my answers were weak, but considering I only had two days with no previous interviews/ practice interviews, it’s better than nothing (I also prewarned them that this was my first interview).I reminded myself all day about eye contact, but failed to do so until nearer the end, which is obviously not good.They had a cat in the same room in the chair next to me, which kind of helped even though I didn’t actually have any contact with it. Oh and another thing: where I was dropped off I managed to get mud on my clean polished shoes, and looking at them now, they’re bad


All rooting for you
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Well done, you sound much more upbeat than your opening post. Hope it goes well for you.
Mechtup6 h, 3 m ago

Just had my interview I mentioned how I had Autism during it. Initially …Just had my interview I mentioned how I had Autism during it. Initially it didn’t go well because the first question threw me off, but after that it was fine. I felt it actually went pretty well.Apparently I’ll find out tomorrow. Trying not to be too positive because I don’t want to get my hopes up. Besides, it was good for the experience.They worded the questions in a different way to how I was expecting so those were my weak points (they asked “what would we be missing if we weren’t to employ you?” instead of “what are your strengths?”).A lot of my answers were weak, but considering I only had two days with no previous interviews/ practice interviews, it’s better than nothing (I also prewarned them that this was my first interview).I reminded myself all day about eye contact, but failed to do so until nearer the end, which is obviously not good.They had a cat in the same room in the chair next to me, which kind of helped even though I didn’t actually have any contact with it. Oh and another thing: where I was dropped off I managed to get mud on my clean polished shoes, and looking at them now, they’re bad


good to hear your update. first interviews are daunting for everyone. i wouldn't worry about your shoes, they would not have had time to look at your shoes.

i treat interviews as a learning opportunity if nothing else. it is good to hear that you coped ok with your interview as you sounded like you were going to pass out in your original post.

my answer to the question of what would they miss if they did not employ me, would be simply 'ME' with a big grin
mutley132 m ago

good to hear your update. first interviews are daunting for everyone. i …good to hear your update. first interviews are daunting for everyone. i wouldn't worry about your shoes, they would not have had time to look at your shoes.i treat interviews as a learning opportunity if nothing else. it is good to hear that you coped ok with your interview as you sounded like you were going to pass out in your original post.my answer to the question of what would they miss if they did not employ me, would be simply 'ME' with a big grin



I assure you, I’ve battled various illnesses which cause dizziness and have yet to pass out, so I doubt it’ll happen for something like that
Mechtup7 m ago

I assure you, I’ve battled v … I assure you, I’ve battled various illnesses which cause dizziness and have yet to pass out, so I doubt it’ll happen for something like that


when i am nervous, my heart starts to race and i feel like i am going to vomit. i feel the opposite to passing out, i feel like i should start off on a marathon as all the adrenalin kicks in when i am nervous.

good luck with the results of the interview but i believe in destiny so if you are meant to get that job, you will get it and if it was not meant for you, then you won't. but at least now you can tell everyone that you have been to an interview and can tell them what is like and how you did.
Guess who’s got the job
Mechtup10 m ago

Guess who’s got the job


yay well done. Very happy for you.

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Edited by: "shabbird" 30th Mar
Mechtup22 m ago

Guess who’s got the job



Excellent, you must have impressed them good for you.
shabbird37 m ago

yay well done. Very happy for you. [Image]


Thanks
jaketheplumber26 m ago

Excellent, you must have impressed them good for you.


Thanks Had a mini panic after realising I hadn’t told them about the days I would be away so had to call them again, but thankfully it was fine.
Mechtup2 h, 52 m ago

Guess who’s got the job


well done. first interview and you got the job. you have more positives than you realise

it's all upwards and onwards from now on.
mutley158 m ago

well done. first interview and you got the job. you have more positives …well done. first interview and you got the job. you have more positives than you realise it's all upwards and onwards from now on.


Yep will be working 24-28 hours a week now which seems a bit crazy considering my age but it seems like a really good job so I don’t want to miss out.

I should probably have addd that it now depends on 4 checks but there’s only one I’m worried about (confirmation of health) but it should be fine.
Edited by: "Mechtup" 30th Mar
@Mechtup Fantastic News, well done
Toptrumpet30th Mar

@Mechtup Fantastic News, well done


Ended up failing the probationary period with only one true reason (the other two weren’t my fault), so ended up losing the job! I was upset when I found out
Don’t dwell on it, get back out there and apply elsewhere.
Toptrumpet2 h, 45 m ago

Don’t dwell on it, get back out there and apply elsewhere.


Just annoyed as I believe it was an unfair dismissal, but I have no rights because I was in the probationary period.

Not dwelling on it but also not applying elsewhere yet as I’ve heard about a job that will be available in August that I’m going to wait for (and I’m not desperate for a job because I still have another one, so I’m not applying to jobs that I may not suit).
@Mechtup Just keep us updated and if you need anymore help with applying etc, let us know
Toptrumpet2nd Jul

@Mechtup Just keep us updated and if you need anymore help with applying …@Mechtup Just keep us updated and if you need anymore help with applying etc, let us know


Got another interview tomorrow but it’s not what I want really (the job).
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