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Hi,

I wanted to know what your comments are for the following case:

"I'm pretty new as a manager and work in finance for a regional company, and we discovered that one of my directs was steeling big time and right on our faces. What we did, besides sending her to jail with her husband, we created an audit and control system inside my company in order to avoid this from happening again"

I've been looking for a job for some time now and have an interview this week, I'm not sure if to mention this as a learning bad experience how I resolved it and what I did in order not to happen, because it was one of my directs and it could back fire to me as a bad manager for not preventing this to happen and for letting this happen with one of my directs.

What's your thought?

 

asteriskrntt1's picture

.... the cookies that are already broken when I open the brand new boxes....

There are some managers who will look at this as your fault and some that will appreciate your reactions.  However, why give them the chance to see you negatively?

Unless someone gives you the question "Tell me about a time you were negligent, allowed employees to steal you blind, you had them prosecuted and what did you do to prevent this from ever happening again?", I don't see you using this information.

You might use it to answer a question "Tell me about a time you implemented some new processes - what did you do, why were they necessary and how did it go?".  Then you can talk about how you realized you had a serious security gap, you developed a way to close it and you did it on time and on budget.  And NO mention of the employee etc.

 

*RNTT

 

ashdenver's picture

I would tag onto the sentiment *RNTT posted.  I would leave out the entire mention of the employee, her husband, jail, stealing, etc. 

I would focus ONLY on the audit & control system you developed.  SODAR:

  • Situation
  • Opportunity
  • Decision
  • Action
  • Result

Focus only on the positives: the actions you've taken and the results of those actions.  There's no need to drag in the personal drama and nitty-gritty details into the mess as it will distract the interviewer away from how excellent you are.  They'll focus on the drama and ethical issues and associate that negativity with their time with you rather than the positives you're bringing to the table.

BJ_Marshall's picture

Have you gotten the MT series on interviewing? It is totally worth the cost at five times its current price: www.manager-tools.com/interviewing-series

Without divulging major concepts in that series, I can say that you need to understand what the KSAs are that best pertain to the functions you'll likely perform in the position for which you interview. Then you need to come up with a slew of "Significant Accomplishment" interview responses that address those KSAs in ways that will impress the pants off the interviewers.

What KSAs are you addressing with your "find, prosecute, and prevent future instances of embezzlement" scenario? More importantly, can you come up with interview responses that address those KSAs without running the risk of possibly painting yourself in a bad light?

- BJ

Mark's picture

I urge you NOT to use this as an interviewing answer.  There are surely other examples you can use that highlight the skills you need for a particular role.

I don't think you'll get THAT question, nor do I think (pre-emptively) that that is a "weakness" question.  A weakness is not a single event.

Look at other accomplishments to highlight.

Mark