​​​​​​Q1.What are your weaknesses?

A1.( This question is as much about how Fred answers, as it is what he says. Honestly, these answers depend more on the subject's condition at interview time, than her or his competence.) 

1.)I am not consistent. Sometimes I  consider (too long?) a task or challenge  before acting on it, while other timesI act immediately, almost reflexively.

2.) I am more tacit than descriptive.  Often it is easier for me to simply execute, than to map out the performance process, or explain the necessary steps to others. When there is little time, this weakness, can be a strength, but in the long run it exhausts my available time and may compress my execution of other tasks that cannot be delegated or executed with assistance.

3.)I mentally wrestle- wondering how other people are reacting, will react, might react to something I am saying, doing, or an action I am considering. I have been told this is crippling, and it can be delaying - butsometimes reflection suggests a different (better) approach.

4.) I do not always follow directions explicitly. Sometimes, when conditions appear comfortable, familiar, and predictable - I dive into the steps I identify as necessary to meet the objective - without carefully verifying all the directions. This is a weakness when this behavior results in missing a detail. I make the effort to ask myself before acting - "am I confident I am acting prudently and in keeping with the guidance?"

5.) I detest sharing or bearing bad newsI try to not to avoid the necessary, but I dread delivering the unpleasant. The strength to this weakness, is the dread inspires me to embrace a number of alternative methods for sharing the negative.

Q2. Tell me about a time where you had to deal with conflict on the job. 

A2a. A fellow (angry and acting disturbing) arrived without appointment (or any connection to the office) demanding the receptionist find "someone to fix his mortgage", as his mortgage payment had increased. It was summer in Phoenix (very hot), he was wearing a jacket, with a pistol shaped bulge. I was the closest management to the receptionist. He sat down, reluctantly, and we resolved his issue.

​A2b.. Conflict is  multi-sided concept. If you are rigid and lack flexibility, you will find conflict every day on your job.  If you are wide-eyed, attentive, and thoughtful you might have OPPORTUNITIES for CONFLICT, but reduce those opportunities, through cultivating your behavior or actions.  

Some CONFLICT arrives without invitation, staff or events bring it (unannounced) and drop it (unwanted) on your desk.  You have to deal with conflict - minimize, eliminate, or isolate it. I don't enjoy wrestling with conflict, but conflict is inevitable. People are emotion driven and governed. 

Q3. What kind of personality do you work best with and why?

A3.   Who has the luxury of determining this? I am able to find synergy with most everyone.  When I recognize that someone feels difficult - I restructure my habits into a functioning synchronicity.It isn't always easy

Q4. What do you see yourself doing within the first 30 days of this job?  A4. Assessing and learning the real aspects of the culture, the informal demands, the processes in operation, characteristics of the stakeholders and actors, the time frames involved, and how those factors align with the expectations for my position and role in the organization. The idea that someone can walk in on day 1 and execute without a learning is a false confidence, that attitude engages conditions for the creating of long term and plaguing issues, which will sap any momentum that appeared to be generated in a fast start.

Fred responds to interview questions:

 "Why are you making this changefrom real estate to administration, teaching, research, or whatever it is that you are doing?"   This transition is not a substantial a change. I am applying the same skills and efforts in another arena, another market; I am not changing what I actually do.    I am performing the same role but in a University, government, or nonprofit organization setting - with some adjustments, but largely,  the same role I have always performed. The learning curve in the new position is the same as if I moved laterally from another organization . I would still have to adapt to the new culture and the activities in the office, but I will be utilizing the same skills and abilities; drawing from previous experience.

Explain what you mean. You will have a new job title and new tasks, How is that the same as working as an investment adviser?     I view my job not as a certain role, but as an objective, subject to governance.  I see an objective to meet, governed with boundaries imposed by time, accessible resources, limited support, necessary considerations or concerns, collaborative concerns, and expectations.  Objectives are individual, each with its own solutions and boundaries. Every job can have different tasks and efforts to be accomplished.   

I don't label myself (in my mind)  in a particular role, such as development officer or experiential education coordinator, because;

1.)Labels are limiting - necessary but limiting. Why do you think people sometimes adopt the attitude of this is not my job?

2.) My role as an employee, is the success of my organization, primarily through the successful execution of my duties. Aligning that role, might be served through actions outside the label and description of my job. 

3). Sometimes an objective requires more of you than others, if it is to succeed.  

My attitude is based on my officer's training. Officers do manage, but overall we were  leaders.  A job is a role, but overall you have to do what is necessary (but legal and ethical) to succeed. 

Yes, my job title will be different than investment adviser, but I still will be collaborating, thinking, listening, problem-solving, presenting - communicating, researching, using appropriate applying the efforts required for a successful outcome. 

This is the work I prepared for in college -I always expected and desired to serve in  one of these roles. I detoured into mortgage production, because I stumbled into an incredible (and temporary) opportunity to produce and earn a healthy income.  (Opportunities like that are rare! )

"But, isn't this a big change for you?.... Real estate isn't the same as what you want to do, is it?"

.... My real estate work, investment advising and any administrative or teaching role require application of  the same transferable efforts, skills, and abilities; drawing from years of production experiences. The same approaches and collaborations are involved.

Fred Answers PotentialInterview Questionson this page. Would these responses be better experienced live? 

InterviewingFred -Questions about him.

Have a Question? Email fredcosgrove@gmail.com.