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United Nations Development Programme

Competency-Based Interviewing Skills


Workshop in cooperation with our colleagues at cinfo
September 2008

Past, demonstrated behavior is the


best indicator of future performance
Office of Human Resources Recruitment Unit

United Nations Development Programme

What are Values & Competencies?


Values are shared principles and beliefs that
underpin the Organisations work and guide actions
and behaviors of staff.
Competencies are skills, attributes and behaviors
directly related to successful job performance.
Core and managerial competencies (such as teamwork or
managing performance) are not specific to any occupation.
Functional (or technical) competencies are related to the
specific requirements for a particular occupation or position.

Office of Human Resources Recruitment Unit

United Nations Development Programme

The CAR(L) Principle


Start the interview preparation already when writing your CV, you are likely to
come up with better example if you have started the thinking process early.

(C)ontext: You will be expected to give an overview of the


situation: what the situation was about, when it was, how you
first got involved, what were the key events and the time
frame.
(A)ctions: You will be expected to cover significant events,
specific instances, that were clearly attributable to you rather
than the team
(R)esults: What was the outcome, impact or results of your
actions: You may be asked questions such as how did it turn
out? What was the final result?
(L)earning: What learning did you take away from this
experience.
Office of Human Resources Recruitment Unit

United Nations Development Programme

Things to Avoid When Being Interviewed

Answering in the hypothetical.


Talking about we, rather talk in the I.
Espousing theories or values (waffling on).
Blanket generalizations.
Making statements about the future.
Interrupting the panel.
Asking questions about benefits and entitlements

Office of Human Resources Recruitment Unit

United Nations Development Programme

Sample Questions (Teamwork)


Tell me about the last time you were part of a
successful team.

What made the team successful? (Context)


What was your role in the team? (Action)
How did you deal with disagreements in the team? (Action)
When looking back was there anything else while dealing with
disagreement that you would do differently? (Learning)
What was the impact or the achievements of the team?
(Result)

Office of Human Resources Recruitment Unit

United Nations Development Programme

Sample Questions (Planning)


Tell me about the last time you had to organize or
plan a major event
What was the nature of the event? (Context)
What was your role in organizing it? (Action)
How did you plan the sequence of what needed to be done?
(Action)
How did the event turn out? (Result)
Reflecting back on that experience, what would you have
done differently next time? (Learning)

Office of Human Resources Recruitment Unit

United Nations Development Programme

Sample Questions (Values)


What are the three values that are most important to
you? (Context)
How do these values translate into you daily work/study?
(Action)
Can you give me a specific example when you felt one of your
values was compromised? (Action)
What did you do about the situation and what did you learn?
(Action/Learning)
What was the result? (Result)

Office of Human Resources Recruitment Unit