Let’s get beyond dressing nice, being on time, and being friendly in your interview. Those tips apply to any job interview.
Let’s talk about the security guard job interview specifically. What is an employer really looking to see in you when he tries to evaluate whether or not you’re the right person to protect his property, customers, and employees? And how can you show that you’re the right person for the job?
First, think about telling stories.
Every interview question should be treated as an opportunity to offer a true challenge-action-result story to the employer. And those “C.A.R.” stories should demonstrate at least one of the qualities that the employer is looking for. What are these qualities?
The employer is looking for someone that he can feel comfortable placing in a position of trust. How have you exhibited integrity in the past, even when doing so didn’t personally benefit you?
A security guard will encounter a lot of different situations in the course of a shift. He may have to think on his feet and make judgment calls. Ideally, he’ll make good judgment calls. What kinds of judgment calls have you been asked to make in the past?
Respect for the rules.
As a security guard you are going to be an enforcer of the rules. Do you respect them and realize that they were put there for a reason? You may also be asked to follow certain procedures as part of an overall security team. Can you showcase some times when you’ve had to follow complex procedures?
Concern for others.
Being a security guard is ultimately about protecting other people. To do it appropriately you will have to have concern for other people’s well-being. Can you demonstrate this concern in some of your stories?
Good leadership skills.
If you had to usher panicking people out of a building during a dangerous event, could you do so? Can you be polite but firm as you escort someone off the premises for causing a scene? Think about some times where you’ve demonstrated your ability to lead and share them during the interview.
Good communication skills.
You will need to keep many lines of communication open: between your supervisors, your employers, the people using a facility and with your team mates. This may involve having conversations, writing reports, or simply using a few well-placed words to diffuse a situation. Find a way to tell some stories that showcase how you made key people aware of issues or problems that needed to be addressed.
Of course, if you do this right you’ll be showing off your communication skills throughout the interview, which only strengthens your case! Remember to project calm confidence throughout the interview—the same calm confidence that you’d demonstrate on the job. You should give yourself an edge in nailing that job.