Become the Shining STAR in Your Applicant Pool

Ever been asked the typical interview question: “Tell me about yourself?”

Where do you even start!?
There’s so much to tell, with your mind about to explode with all of the different experiences and skill sets you have to offer. Sorting these ideas can be overwhelming right on the spot when those precious interview seconds are wasting away…

My last semester of college before I started my road to job searching, I learned the STAR technique in my Human Resource class and also heard it again from a career counselor in an interview workshop. Instead of spilling out your whole life story at the beginning of an interview, use the STAR method to set yourself apart from the other candidates.


Start your answer with an interesting detailed experience you’ve dealt with in the past- a challenge that was faced.


Describe what you wanted to achieve from overcoming this challenge. For example, a project where you had to improve past results that was inefficient.


Explain simply what steps you took towards producing a beneficial outcome.


Did you overcome the challenge with your actions? Always give numbers if possible.

For example, in my past interviews I would start right off the bat with what I had accomplished working on for one of my past marketing internships for my college Union, explained every main detail of my project:

S– The college Union staff had t-shirts with the union’s name, MacVittie, on it. The problem was, no students were aware what ‘MacVittie’ was and only called the facility by “The Union.” Also, the communication between the college union staff and students was mixed, and wasted resources developed.

T– I explained that my duty was to increase the brand awareness of ‘MacVittie,’ developing a fresh advertising campaign, and to improve communication with the students.

A– Market research was performed through an online survey for the students with an incentive to participate. With the survey results complied, it was clear what had to be done to gain the student’s interests and awareness, and how to better connect with them.

R– An intricate poster was produced as a final result, which included pictures of students wearing the ‘MacVittie’ t-shirts in the background, and a more accurate way of connecting to students was organized.

Along with my STAR example, I would show the interviewer what I was working on then from my portfolio with the poster layout. Visuals are a wonderful resource in an interview, because it gives them something to remember you by! It helps gives them a sense of what your passion is and it shows your amount of preparation and organization.

You can take any broad interview question, and warp it to what you’ve achieved with your passions. This method will show the interviewer what kind of person/worker you are, without blabbing on about your personal life and characteristics. Just remember to focus on what you’ve done, not what your team members did.

Post written by Julie Skowronek, Marketing Assistant for Whiting Consulting.

3 Responses

  1. […] Become the Shining STAR in Your Applicant Pool […]

  2. […] Become the Shining STAR in Your Applicant Pool […]

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