In this post We will answer the behavioural interview question: “Tell me about a time you showed creativity at work.”
A sneak peek into the mind of the interviewer and WHY they ask this
what to say when you’re answering
And a concrete example of my own experience to get you thinking!
Ok So What’s the point of this question?
It’s to see what ‘creativity’ in the workplace means to you? Where did you take something to the next level and give it a creative flare that otherwise would have been a super boring presentation or boring article, or slide deck?
What have you done that was creative that benefited someone else?
The opposite of creative is streamlined, process driven, instructions. There’s a time and place for that too and there’s nothing wrong with it, but if they’re asking this question it means they want to know what creativity you can bring to the table in the role!
So here’s how you answer:
You answer it by telling your story in my favourite Story way using:
The SARI Formula which we’ll go through here. SARI stands for (Situation, Action Result and interesting Features)
The SARI Formula stands for (Situation/Task, Action, Result & Interesting Features)
You want to tell a powerful story that paints a good picture of the situation, how you rose to the challenge and the end result.
Step 1: The Situation(setting the stage) For Example:
I was asked to do a presentation for the company on behalf of my department. The other departments did their presentations and I could see that people would zone out quite frequently and not really be engaged in the presentation. So for our presentation I saw it as an opportunity to get creative and I used a few different methods!
Step 2: ACTION:
What were the actions that you took and what outcome did they lead to? So for example: Action: I decided that including members of the audience was a great way to do this, as people seeing their peers go up in front of everyone was more interesting than just me talking to them for a half hour. So I planned out a few exercises for people to come up and I would ask them a few questions. I also played a couple of funny post clips that got people laughing. All were related to my subject matter and made my points well. This was instead of just having power point slides with text on them.
Step 3: RESULT
So the Result was: That I got a very high score on my presentation. Afterwards everyone rated the value of each department’s presentation and mine was given the highest score of 4.8 out of 5. I was asked if I would be willing to do the same presentation with a few tweaks at the next User conference. I was super excited that the risk I took paid off and that the audience received the presentation so well.
Step 4: #BONUS Interesting Features
Highlight anything interesting about the story – So for me here was that engagement levels are highly controllable. So by trying out a few different things in a new presentation in front of internal staff members I was able to see what worked well. Then I can imply the same techniques for doing customer presentations later on and I was given more opportunities to do so because of this creative decision.
There we have it:
Can you think of a time you had an opportunity to be creative with something that otherwise would have been vanilla and just boring?
How did you feel afterwards?
How did it turn out!
Thank you for reading! And remember Nailing the interview questions is great! But There is a lot more to interviewing than just answering the questions.
In fact if all you do is answer the questions alone, you’ve already lost at the interview.
There is a whole interview strategy at play and if you’d like to learn more you can get started with me by clicking the link below to grab my free guide:
You get free instant access and Ultimate situational interviewing guide.
What you’ll get when you download the guide:
An in-depth look at The SARI Formula (and the psychology behind it)
A series of Concrete Examples for the top 10 most commonly asked situational questions
Fill in the blank templates for each question
& if you are still getting stuck (because preparing your own stories is tough) I’ve also included
25 Questions to come up with your own stories much quicker.
You’ll also get the beautifully designed workbook, designed specially for you to prepare for your next interview.
By the end of working through the guide you’ll be totally ready for any situational interview question that gets thrown your way!
Click below and grab it now.
Thanks for reading and I’ll see you next week back here at this lovely digital house of www.nataliefisher.ca
In Work & Life