A number of companies are forgoing the traditional one-on-one interviewing process and opting for group interview scenarios instead. According to Reed, "Not only are (group interviews) a good way to compare and contrast candidates, they also demonstrate how each individual works as part of a team, and how they perform under pressure." Additionally, as per U.S. News & World Report, "For the hiring company, a group interview can be a big time saver and the company may be hiring more than one person for the role."

This process may be a benefit for the hiring manager, but for those being interviewed, the experience can be intimidating. If you are about to head off to a group interview for the first time or want to handle the situation better the next time you're in such a position, here are some tips to make it through successfully and prove that you're the best person for the job. The group dynamic can be your ticket to landing a solo interview as a follow-up and get hired for the role you've been coveting!

Be Confident

While you may be inclined to size up the competition or compare yourself based on first impressions, that won't help you be your best self. You have no idea what the others bring to the table, so focus on your strengths and what your experience and talent can do for the company.

As per U.S. News & World Report, "Always be respectful, courteous and professional. Don't talk down to other candidates or try to make their answers wrong." A sure sign of confidence is being secure in yourself despite what the others may gave to offer. The Muse adds, "Remember, you don't have to talk constantly to be noticed—but to be memorable, make sure what you're saying is unique and contributing to the conversation."

Reed suggests to prepare an introduction before you get there as a smooth icebreaker and "body language can make all the difference. Do it right, and you'll appear attentive and alert, showing your interviewers that you're genuinely interested in what they have to say. Do it wrong, however, and you'll only look listless and lethargic."

Don't forget to make eye contact with not only the interviewer, but all people in the room. Smile and be friendly. Being yourself is confidence from within.

Engage and Address the Others

In this group setting, it's important to be aware of your surroundings. This type of interview is more like a conversation, so you'll need to be engaged with the group and give them the respect you'd expect in return.

As per The Muse, "You have to listen to the interviewers and interviewees and stay engaged in where the conversation is headed. Really pay attention and use body language to show you're engaged with the group, even when you're not talking."

Reed notes, "One of the most important facets of leadership is the ability to ensure everyone's opinions are heard, not just voicing your own."

The interviewer is holding a group interview for a reason. They want to see how you can handle the pressure. They need to know how you'll fare in company meetings and conferences. Think of the other candidates as assets. You can bounce ideas off one another or come up with answers you may have never thought of thanks to something another person discussed. You never know, you may just wind up working alongside one or more of these candidates in the future!

Have you been interviewed in a group setting? What did you think the pros and cons were?

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Over two years into the most momentous event in our lives the world has changed forever … Some of us have PTSD from being locked up at home, some are living like everything’s going to end tomorrow, and the rest of us are merely trying to get by. When the pandemic hit we entered a perpetual state of vulnerability, but now we’re supposed to return to normal and just get on with our lives.

What does that mean? Packed bars, concerts, and grocery shopping without a mask feel totally strange. We got used to having more rules over our everyday life, considering if we really had to go out or keeping Zooming from our living rooms in threadbare pajama bottoms.

The work-from-home culture changed it all. Initially, companies were skeptical about letting employees work remotely, automatically assuming work output would fall and so would the quality. To the contrary, since March of 2020 productivity has risen by 47%, which says it all. Employees can work from home and still deliver results.

There are a number of reasons why everyone loves the work from home culture. We gained hours weekly that were wasted on public transport, people saved a ton of money, and could work from anywhere in the world. Then there were the obvious reasons like wearing sweats or loungewear all week long and having your pets close by. Come on, whose cat hasn’t done a tap dance on your keyboard in the middle of that All Hands Call!

Working from home grants the freedom to decorate your ‘office’ any way you want. But then people needed a change of environment. Companies began requesting their employees' RTO, thus generating the Hybrid Work Model — a blend of in-person and virtual work arrangements. Prior to 2020, about 20% of employees worked from home, but in the midst of the pandemic, it exploded to around 70%.

Although the number of people working from home increased and people enjoyed their flexibility, politicians started calling for a harder RTW policy. President Joe Biden urges us with, “It’s time for Americans to get back to work and fill our great downtowns again.”

While Boris Johnson said, “Mother Nature does not like working from home.'' It wasn’t surprising that politicians wanted people back at their desks due to the financial impact of working from the office. According to a report in the BBC, US workers spent between $2,000 - $5,000 each year on transport to work before the pandemic.

That’s where the problem lies. The majority of us stopped planning for public transport, takeaway coffee, and fresh work-appropriate outfits. We must reconsider these things now, and our wallets are paying

the price. Gas costs are at an all-time high, making public transport increase their fees; food and clothes are all on a steep incline. A simple iced latte from Dunkin’ went from $3.70 to $3.99 (which doesn’t seem like much but 2-3 coffees a day with the extra flavors and shots add up to a lot), while sandwiches soared by 14% and salads by 11%.

This contributes to the pressure employees feel about heading into the office. Remote work may have begun as a safety measure, but it’s now a savings measure for employees around the world.

Bloomberg are offering its US staff a $75 daily commuting stipend that they can spend however they want. And other companies are doing the best they can. This still lends credence to ‘the great resignation.’ Initially starting with the retail, food service, and hospitality sectors which were hard hit during the pandemic, it has since spread to other industries. By September 2021, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 4.4 million resignations.

That’s where the most critical question lies…work from home, work from the office or stick to this new hybrid world culture?

Borris Johnson thinks, “We need to get back into the habit of getting into the office.” Because his experience of working from home “is you spend an awful lot of time making another cup of coffee and then, you know, getting up, walking very slowly to the fridge, hacking off a small piece of cheese, then walking very slowly back to your laptop and then forgetting what it was you’re doing.”

While New York City Mayor Eric Adams says you “can't stay home in your pajamas all day."

In the end, does it really matter where we work if efficiency and productivity are great? We’ve proven that companies can trust us to achieve the same results — or better! — and on time with this hybrid model. Employees can be more flexible, which boosts satisfaction, improves both productivity and retention, and improves diversity in the workplace because corporations can hire through the US and indeed all over the world.

We’ve seen companies make this work in many ways, through virtual lunches, breakout rooms, paint and prosecco parties, and — the most popular — trivia nights.

As much as we strive for normalcy, the last two years cannot simply be erased. So instead of wiping out this era, it's time to embrace the change and find the right world culture for you.

What would get you into the office? Free lunch? A gym membership? Permission to hang out with your dog? Some employers are trying just that.

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Did you hear about the Great Resignation? It isn’t over. Just over two years of pandemic living, many offices are finally returning to full-time or hybrid experiences. This is causing employees to totally reconsider their positions.

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