How to Prepare for English Job Interviews for Korean Job Candidates

I used to be terrible at job interviews. I remember one time I completely blew the job interview because I made one stupid mistake.

I was young and I had no experience. I got a job interview at a decent mid-sized company located in Gangnam for an entry-level position. It started well, and I was doing well for an inexperienced job interviewee. However, I screwed up answering just one question at the very end.

The job interviewer asked me how much I'd like to get paid. The salary range for this entry-level position was just a little over 20 million won. I asked for 50 million won without hesitation, because that's how much I needed to eat the most expensive tacos in Seoul every day for 10 years.

Instead, what I should have answered is this;
“I understand that the average salary for a position like this ranges from 18 to 22 million won. However, since I have shown my competency in A and B, and brought the X and Y results in my previous experience, I believe I deserve the top range of that salary.”

You can be confident, and ask for what you deserve. But you have to do your homework first; research the industry inside out, demonstrate that you are a top performer, and communicate it in a powerful way. I was young and naive. By the time the job interviewer asked me about the salary, I was only thinking about tacos.

I don't want you to make the same mistake. I want you to be well-prepared, and be successful in your English job interview.

That is why I invited Alexis to share word about what to expect from an English job interview as a Korean job candidate.

Meet Alexis

Alexis studied extensively in HR (human resources) and has worked for both Korean and foreign companies in Seoul. She has witnessed job interviews from both sides of the table. In this exclusive audio session, Alexis shares a few tips on how to prepare for an English job interview as a Korean job seeker.

This podcast is divided into two parts. In Part 1, Alexis and I discuss expectations one should have about English job interviews and how to prepare for them. In Part 2, we do a mock-interview and show you both good and bad examples.

Part 1: What to expect, and how to prepare for an English job interview as a Korean job seeker

Download the MP3 (Right click and save)

Notes from the podcast:

      • Korean interviewers tend to ask “standard Korean job interview questions,” while foreigner interviewers may take the liberty of asking questions freely or spontaneously.
      • Some English interviews are conducted only to evaluate your English conversation skills. The interviewer may throw you off with a strange question, like, “Describe the color purple to a blind person.” This is not to test your knowledge of the industry, but rather to test whether you can think quickly on your feet, in English.
      • In order to prepare for an English job interview, know your resume inside out.
      • Know the “ideal personality” type the company seeks, and be that person. Prepare a story describing how you possess that “ideal personality type”
      • Develop and practice your storytelling. Tell your stories to your friends.
      • Record yourself on camera and find and fix any of your bad habits.
      • Think, “What does the manager REALLY want?”

Part 2 : A mock-interview, interview answers good and bad

Download the MP3 (Right click and save)

Notes from the podcast:

      • Q: Tell me about yourself.
      • A: Don't just talk about your personal history. Tell a personal story and explain why your interests and experience you do match with what the company is seeking.
      • Q: Why should we hire you?
      • A: Don't just list some fluffy words with no substance. Again, tell a compelling story, highlight your achievement, and tell how the company can benefit from having you in their team.
      • Always think from the hiring manager's perspective.


About Josh

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언어와 문화 학습을 좋아하는 일본계 미국인 Josh 입니다. 영어와 일본어를 하고 제3개국어인 한국어는 20대에 배웠습니다. 통번역사, 프로젝트매니저, 마케터로서의 경험을 바탕으로 여러분이 스마트하게 보일 수 있는 영어 스피킹 노하우를 공유하고 있습니다. 비즈니스 영어와 발음과 엑센트에 관한 강좌를 실시하고 있습니다. 분야: 비즈니스 영어, 프레젠테이션, 발음 교정 現: 유튜브채널 SplashEnglish 운영前: 서울교육대학교, 김미경 영어 스피치 트레이너. 협동: EBSe, JEI 재능, 메가스터디, 제주항공, 캠블리, 코어소리영어, AranTV. 다룰 줄 아는 악기: 탬버린.좋아하는 음식은 타코스.

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