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Job interview question

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Smallpotatoes, Oct 20, 2009.

  1. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    One of my first jobs was at a small weekly paper, owned by one guy who was the editor, publisher, ad salesman, reporter, etc.
    The guy was interviewing candidates for a news reporting job and he told me one of the main questions he asked them: If you're close to deadline and wrapping up a centerpiece feature and a serious car accident happens down the street from the office, what do you do?
    He said the answer he was looking for was one in which the reporter figured out a way to get both things done on deadline. (My answer would be that if I'm still working on a centerpiece feature on deadline, shame on me. It's a situation that should not happen.)
    Is this a good question to ask job applicants? and has anyone here been asked such a question?
    I've been thinking about the question lately because of the time when I got yelled at for not including a guy's AAU tryout notice in the paper at a time when my priority was providing bang-out coverage of two state championship games, plus features on the Thanksgiving Day football game. Perhaps it was truly my responsibility to get the tryout notice in as well as do the other stuff, not give one thing priority over the other.
  2. sportsguydave

    sportsguydave Active Member

    I think you gave the correct answer. The centerpiece feature should be done at least a few days before it runs.
  3. flexmaster33

    flexmaster33 Active Member

    Yes, I agree you had the best answer...may or may not be what this guy was looking for...who knows?

    I love those people that think getting a two-inch brief in the paper is going to have their camp bursting at the seams on sign-up day...yes, it's important community stuff, but it's only going to trickle in a few more people...we're not their PR dept afterall.
  4. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    And I love how pushy people get when it comes to expecting us to provide them with what is essentially free advertising.
  5. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    I think that question is a poor one. He is basically giving you an either/or example but expects you to choose both.
  6. Drip

    Drip Active Member

    I hate hypothetical questions on job interviews. Shit like that doesn't happen in reality. Your answer was profound but it's a no brainer. You go for the live news every time.
    I'm willing to bet the guy's next question was, "Where do you see yourself in five years?"
  7. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    Other than "Alive and if all goes well not in prison," I've yet to come up with an answer for that.
  8. Drip

    Drip Active Member

    Yeah, that's a loaded question. I once told an interviewer I wanted to be where he was.
    I didn't get the job so I guess that wasn't the correct answer.
  9. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    What doesn't happen in reality? Centerpieces aren't pushed to the deadline? Live news doesn't happen near deadline?
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