Behavioral Based Oral Board Interview – Take Two
I receive a fair amount of feedback from my blog posts, but few have elicited the number of questions and comments as my last post, “Behavioral Based Oral Board Interviews.”
It seems that my advice and observations regarding the necessity for preparation of American law enforcement candidates, in the area of behavioral interviews, didn’t fall on deaf ears.
I’m glad to learn that those willing to prepare for their oral board interviews are apparently really drilled into preparing to the fullest extent possible.
Members of EarnYourBadge clearly appreciated the perspective my earlier blog post gave them, and those who are not yet members, asked me to elaborate on the RMSI.
Members also expressed their appreciation for my encouraging them to drill into the mountain of RMSI video information in the Member’s Room of EYB.
Some had simply skipped it, assuming it was meant only for Canadian law enforcement applicants.
While it is indeed tailored to the unique interviews conducted in Canada, it’s a must learn for everyone, regardless of which country you’ll interview in.
If you’ve not yet read “Behavioral Based Oral Board Interviews” post, please do. In doing so, you’ll be in a position to pull more usable information from this post.
How It Works
As noted in the previous blog, unlike the standard oral board, behavioral interviews are meant to measure and predict the future behavior of applicants, by means of examining their past behavior.
Let’s pick apart just one of the eight competencies embedded in the RMSI interview module, “Teamwork.”
Let’s assume the panel asked you to articulate an example of your ability to function effectively in a teamwork situation.
You could give them an example of a time that you and a number of your fellow volunteers put together a canoe race at a youth summer camp where you were volunteering.
You’d do well to share how hectic it was to get this project off the ground at the last minute but that, in working cooperatively, and in tandem with your fellow camp counselors, the event was a great success.
Your entire group was complemented by the camp director for putting together a great event for the kids.
How It Succeeds
Do you want to just provide a good answer, or do you want to ELIMINATE your competition? I know your answer, so now it’s time to take a “good” answer, and make it, the “answer to beat!”
Use a life experience such as the one noted above, (it has to be a true to life example and not mine) and turn it from “oh that’s nice” to “WOW…this just might be our next officer”…type of answer.
Your “Teamwork” experience is going to include, not just your ability to work cooperatively with your fellow camp counselors, but will incorporate your having lead the group of volunteers, using your organizational skills, coupled with your desire to motivate those you volunteered with.
Early on, you saw the need for a leader and so you gradually took charge of the event in a manner that wasn’t obtrusive or pushy, but rather, in using a management style that was gradual yet confident.
As the planning of this canoe race moved forward, you individually collected the ideas and opinions of your colleagues and when it came time to finalize the plans, you presented each and every idea to the team and called for the group to prioritize each proposal.
In the end, by way of calling for a group vote, everyone felt a sense of ownership of the final plan and the canoe race was a resounding success.
Best of all, everyone involved felt like a winner. You recognized then, as you do now, that when someone owns an idea, plan or even a business, they’ll work longer and more diligently than anyone else involved, in order to bring success to the project.
Doing Versus Succeeding
Anyone can do something and make it work, but as you can see when you added the elements and qualities of organization, diplomacy, planning, event management and sprinkled on a bit of humility, you’ve proven to give your Behavioral Interview panel members a reason to sit back and think to themselves, this candidate is different.
This candidate stands out from the crowd. This may just be our next officer! And this, my friends, is why it’s so very important that you learn deeply, the RMSI model.
Whether you submit to a behavioral based or standard oral board, the knowledge that you’ll gain by learning the eight competencies will be the key component to getting sworn in.