Britains Got Talent, The Voice, X Factor, Big Brother, The Apprentice, Take Me Out; these shows feature contestants vying for the prize of fame, recognition, or even a date. They claim to be about talent, but what is overwhelmingly prevelant is the preconceptions we get from how someone looks. Who can forget Susan Boyle on Britain’s Got Talent, people appeared genuinely shocked that someone without model level good-looks could be a great singer.

Judges reactions change from eye rolling to enjoyment watching Boyle

Judges reactions change from eye rolling to enjoyment watching Boyle


What can this teach us about interviews? Nothing, you might think, however it shows a lot about people’s perceptions and immediate reactions to a person. Here are a few ways to learn from talent shows to better your interview technique.

Edited Back-story

Think of your interview answers as a well edited episode of a talent show, to sway the audience (interviewer) you the interviewee must use examples from your back story (previous employment) to show you deserve a place in the competition. Remember, audiences voting at home can only go off what they see on the t.v screen, likewise you need to give your interviewer all the information with which to make a decision, they can’t read your mind. You wouldn’t vote for someone you’d never heard sing, would you?

Just don't tell them 'everything'!

Just don’t tell them ‘everything’!

Looks Matter

As exemplified in talent shows what you wear, how you carry yourself and your first impression is vital to your progression. Whether it’s a career as a singer, Lord Sugar’s apprentice or an accountant you will be scrutinized first and foremost on your appearance. Make sure you look smart and presentable, an interviewer doesn’t have the magic smoke of Stars in their Eyes to transform you into the applicant they want you to be, you need to look like their ideal prospect from the get-go.

The Apprentice Candidates dress to impress

The Apprentice Candidates dress to impress

Make a good pitch

Make a good pitch, in a talent show there are times to pitch why you should stay and what you can offer to the show. Interviewers will expect for you to pitch why you should be chosen, often asking ‘why should I pick you over other candidates?’ a difficult question which illustrates why a prepared pitch is useful. Not many people enjoy boasting, or claiming they are better than others, but take inspiration from contestants on talent shows who use the opportunity to show just how much they want the prize at the end and how deserving they are. This shows that you don’t need to vilify other candidates, rather you need to convince the interviewer how much you want it, and why you are a great choice.


One Shot

Unless other candidates hit flat notes, or fall off the stage you have to assume they are as good as you, after all you all reached that stage. So, you must be the best you can be or you’ll be sent home, maybe you can audition again in the next year’s first rounds, but  job vacancies unlike talent shows don’t come around very quickly.

Better than other candidates?

Better than other candidates?

Do you have any interview experiences that seemed more like an audition for a talent show? Let us know below or @clothes2order

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