So you’ve made it through to round two. You’re wondering what it’s going to be like, what’s going to be expected of you and what is the competition going to be like. Well, if there is one thing that sums up how agencies base the second round it’s ‘Team Work’. Now, I use to hate the idea and often I did of having to work with a bunch of people who were so keen to be heard, so keen to be noticed and all appeared like rejects from The Apprentice. That’s ok as I probably played up to the exact same thing. The thing is you have to have a balance in these team work assessments, you need to stand out but not so much that you’re a sore thumb, you need to be intelligent but not use every opportunity you have to let everyone know how much, you need to be funny and make those around you laugh but not look like a failed Brighton pier-stand up comedian and most importantly you need to demonstrate strategic understanding, the ability to take on board what others think and say and generally come across like a sound human being. Sounds ruff? Well the only real advice we can give in these kind of interviews is that you simply remain yourself and sharp. If you fit in then you fit in, it’s really that simple and there isn’t really that much you can do to prepare for this type other than keep reading up on the industry from
Brand Republic and Campaign. Some I was successful in and others not so. Some I enjoyed others I didn’t. Leo Burnett liked the louder more exhibitionists of people while JWT liked the quieter sharper type. It’s really playing to the agency culture you’re going to so research that well. So what kind of things do you have to do, well there is a number of different types of group work they get you to do. For example: together build a bridge from this point to that point using these materials. In a group present to us the perfect Graduate Trainee. You’re given 30 items listed, pick 15 you would take with you to a desert island and why and tell us why you dropped the remaining 15. Speed interviewing (this is when you’re all in a line sat opposite a member of the agency, you then have 3 minutes to answer a question and then whistle is blown and you rotate to the next, much like Speed Dating. Questions come at you fast such as what is the most iconic thing in the world. What is the product of your generation? Define creativity. If you had to be an inanimate object what would you be and why? How much do you think I earn? If you had to kill your mother or your father, who would it be and why? What is the worst thing you’ve ever done? What is your biggest success? What is your biggest failure?)
You get the picture. Once you’re over the guard up phase and you all collectively realise you’re all in the same boat it can actually be good banter, especially if you feel you’ve done well. I highly recommend you going for beers with your counterparts afterwards as these could be the people you spend the next year training with…that and there is nothing better than having a drink and going over the day with others whilst chain smoking…if you feel you did well. All in all, I suggest you keep calm, always be yourself and always be witty and reasonable, which I’m sure most of you are anyway.