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Question for you guys who've had interviews.

What do you do when you meet a panel of interviewers who seem really unorganized?? How do you show them what a good candidate you are when they don't even know what questions to ask you.

 

I've heard this happening to a couple of people already. Especially those who get interviewed by panels instead of the mini interviews. How do you cope with it?

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you may wanna post this in the "interviews" forum...

i'm not at that stage yet, but maybe it isn't the worse thing if your panel doesn't have their questions ready for you...you get to start with what you want, emphasize what you want, and lead it in any direction you want...hopefully, once you start talking about something, questions will come up and they'll start interacting with you more.

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Question for you guys who've had interviews.

What do you do when you meet a panel of interviewers who seem really unorganized?? How do you show them what a good candidate you are when they don't even know what questions to ask you.

 

I've heard this happening to a couple of people already. Especially those who get interviewed by panels instead of the mini interviews. How do you cope with it?

 

They could also be "faking" it to see how you react to an awkward situation. I think in any situation you should answer the questions to the best of your ability regardless of whether or not the interviewers are disorganized. It shouldn't affect how YOU interview.

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I've been in a few situations like that (not necessarily for med) and I usually don't do very well because I get uncomfortable and I don't actively "sell myself" very well.

 

Unfortunately, your interviewers are not professional interviewers. They are clinicians, med students, members of the community...

 

I guess if you come across bad interviewers, the onus is on you to try and make it better (perhaps to take the lead). It's your job to "sell yourself" instead of them asking you. Although it's easier said than done...

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Before going into any med school interview, I think you should have a good reflexion and a clear idea of what impression you want to make on the committee. This will help you no matter what type of interview you get.

 

Think about what kind of person they are looking for and what makes you that kind of person. Think of which life experiences you want to share with them, what will make it easy for them to "sell" your profile to the admissions committee, what will make it easy for them to remember you. Think about the different questions they may have and how you would best answer them, and think about the different "acts" they may pull and what the best way to play along with them.

 

In my interview, the pannel was great, friendly and organised, so I don't know what I actually would have done if they hadn't been, but here's what I think I would have aimed for :

 

The disorganisation may be real, and it may be an act. I would keep this in mind, because it would lower my anxiety (this may be different for others though, I don't know). I would just try to make their job as easy as possible by taking the lead somewhat and speaking on topics that I think they need to know about, making sure to include all those valuable life experiences and assets I had previously decided to share with them. I would look for feedback, at least non-verbal, from the pannel, to decide what I should ellaborate on and what they heard enough of. At the same time, I would remember my "this is all an act" theory and try not to worry too much if the non-verbal isn't too clear. I'd try to see the people interviewing me as just people, generous enough to give their time to the admissions process, and I would try to make them at ease so they don't feel embarrassed about not being organised & they find me easy to talk to.

 

If you get the chance and this possible scenario worries you, why not try to convince a friend (or even better, a med student or something, they have prep committees at some schools) to do a role-play with you? Practice being the one in the lead with someone who doesn't ask much, acting spontaneously, then ask for feedback on how they felt. If you can, repeat the experience after their feedback to see if you were able to improve with their suggestions.

 

Final word : Although it's always good to be prepared and such interviews do happen for sure, don't forget that it's a minority. The vast majority of pannels will be very friendly and very reasonably organised.

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