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30 seconds! 30 seconds is all it takes to create an impression on someone when you first meet, whether that be good or bad.

These impressions can have a lasting impact on how you are viewed as a potential employee. This is, therefore, your time to shine and sell yourself.

We all know that interviews can be tough, wracked with nerves, the smallest thing can make the stress of the situation ten times worse. However, turning up to an interview a nervous wreck may not have the impact on the interviewers that you desire. To combat this, try not to let anything phase you, even if you have had the worst morning of your life...

Here at Selective Group, we have come up with a list of things you can follow in order to ensure you give a great first impression:

1. Dress to Impress

Interviewers will form an immediate opinion of you based on how you present yourself. If you turn up scruffy and untidy you risk being mentally labeled as lazy and unorganised.

To avoid getting it wrong and underdressing, or even over dressing, it is an idea to look at the companies website prior to the interview. This will help you to understand more about the business, giving you a better idea of what to wear.

Bare in mind that not all employers are the same, so knowing about what type of culture the company has will give you a foot forward ahead of others that are in the running.

2. Tick Tock, Tick Tock

Timing is everything! So obviously, it is crucial that you are on time for your interview. Turning up late is possibly the worst thing that you can do, so avoid it at all costs.

Ensure that you leave with plenty of time to spare, it is an idea to set yourself a time to get there - aim arrive half an hour before the interview, that way you can either grab a coffee somewhere close by or wait in reception until the interviewers are ready for you.

3. Bow down to preparation

A rookie error made by many is turning up unprepared. This is possibly the worst thing that you can do, not being ready for a job interview again shows carelessness and a lack of interest.

Usually, similar questions are asked in different interviews as a screening process, these could vary from questions where you have to give examples of situations that you have been in or general “tell me about yourself” questions.

Preparing confident answers to these common questions will help to really impress your interviewer, giving you an advantage over other candidates. It is also a good way of building your own self confidence, as you will know what you are going to say even before stepping foot in the room.

4. Know your stuff

You can reinforce a good impression by being prepared. Do your research of the company before hand, this could include any recent news coverage about the industry or sector you are entering to really emphasise your interest in the company and get conversation flowing!

Don’t forget to ask questions when asked at the end, this shows that you are interested in the role and shows that you are inquisitive about the company - in a good way!

However, problems can often be unavoidable, so be prepared for things to not run as smoothly as planned. The ability to adapt to different situations is key, and moving on and doing your best despite these issues can show your potential!

Following the above tips can help you to achieve a great first impression, setting you up for the success you deserve!

If you have any questions or would like help from Selective Group to find your dream role don’t hesitate to get in contact with us on info@selective-group.com or call 01235 462 900.



Everyone strives to perform to the best of their ability, well at least you would hope so right? Wanting the best from your workforce is only natural, but how can you go from having a workforce are performing averagely to being ahead of the competition?


Here at Selective Group, we take a look at a couple of tricks you can apply to your workforce in order to turn your staff from fine to fantastic:


1. Hiring


First things first, in order to achieve the ‘dream team’ of workforces you need to ensure that you hire the right people. Look for several key traits to tick off, these could include drive, determination and organisation - if qualities such as these aren’t apparent, question whether the candidate could focus and put everything into the role. The last thing you want is a couch potato of an employee!


2. Incentive, Incentive, Incentive


To give your workforce that little push they need, it may be an idea to offer incentives to those who perform over an expected target. This will help to motivate your staff, as a reward at the end is up for grabs. Incentives could be anything from vouchers, to a bottle of vino or even a trip somewhere if you are feeling extra generous! After all a little competition never hurt anyone...


3. Measure Productivity


A great way to measure the productivity of your company and its work standards is to introduce assessments.


Creating a clear business structure including reviews would benefit both you the employer and your employees, as it allows for regular feedback from both parties giving you the opportunity to address any issues head on. It will also give you the opportunity to catch any underperformers, reducing the risk of underperforming employees!


4. Set High Expectations


Setting high expectations for all members of staff is crucial. Believe it or not, it can make a huge difference to your workforce’s performance, without you even realising that is the reason behind it all. Ensuring that the company begins to expect a higher standard of work or service will raise the bar in all other areas. So set your sights high.


Once a high performance benchmark is set and all employees fit into the structure, it will become the norm and a high achieving, driven company culture will be achieved - which is just what you are after!


For more information on how Selective Group can provide support for you, whether you are an employer looking to hire more staff, or candidate looking for a new role we can help you, just get in contact with us on 01235 462 900 or email info@selective-group.com.


So you have successfully managed to get to the interview stage of the job that you desperately want, but what comes next?


You need to show the interviewers what you are really made of and impress the socks off of them to secure the job you have been dreaming of.


Part of the interview process may require you to answer some competency based interview questions. These assess your past experiences and analyse the way you may manage future situations.


You may tell your interviewer that you can ‘think outside of the box’ but why not show them? Go above and beyond and demonstrate that your claims are reality.

One way to shine like the star that you are is by following the STAR interview approach. This technique guides you through answers by explaining the situation, task, approach and result of a scenario. You’ll see your name in lights on broadway for sure with our tips:

Situation - It is good to give an overview in order to set the context of your story. Don’t forget to keep it brief and try not to waffle on. Stick to explaining the who, what, where and when to your interviewer for best results!

Task - Describe the task that you needed to complete to the interviewer and don’t forget to specify the role that you played in the scenario - as this is what they are looking for.

Approach - Ask yourself how did you approach the task? Were you successful at overcoming the challenges that you faced? It is a good idea to give a step by step guide focusing on the detail of the event.

Result - What was the outcome? Explain the direct results of your actions and show just how fab you really are. It may be an idea to back this up with quantifiable achievements. This will really impress the interviewer and help score you those extra brownie points.

You may have no idea what competency questions will be asked in your interview, but you can prepare several examples of past experiences to practice before you head on in. This will help to calm those nerves as you will feel prepped and raring to go!

Preparation is key and giving your interviewer specific, meaningful answers will showcase your suitability as a candidate, screaming “pick me, pick me” in the best possible way.

We know you can do it, so go on - be a STAR!

For more information on the sectors that Selective Group work in, visit our website or email us on info@selective-group.com or call 01235 462 900.



To achieve success in anything that you do, you need to have a solid strategic plan in place and that is the same in the world of recruitment.


Failure can be hard to deal with, so it is important that you turn your recruitment failures into successes.


Here at Selective Group we have come up with four ways you can achieve success and turn things around:


1. Face your faults


When looking for a new role, it is important to look back and reflect on your recent failures. Although you want to focus on your strengths, recruiters will want to see how you have managed your previous failures in order to turn them into lessons that shape future actions.


Being able to critically evaluate yourself and review why and how things have gone wrong in the past is something that a lot of employers value and respect. Speaking out about mistakes is always difficult, but being honest will help you in the long run. However, don’t just blame or others or be too hard on yourself!


2. Grow


Learning and growing from your mistakes shows others how you can adapt to difficult situations. This demonstrates that you can have resilience and the ability to keep up with the changing business world.


As soon as you become open to failure and the prospect of it, you can begin to look at things from a new perspective. Having experienced failure means that when you get your next opportunity you can tackle it in a different way. You may also have the potential to teach others your newly found skills - all of which is a creativity driver.


3. Open up


Opening up about failure can help to drive an innovative company culture, where employees are less averse to change and are more open to accept different ways of working. Opening up and asking for help means that you receive the correct advice and don’t have to suffer in silence - which most of the time ends in failure. It is best to break old habits and open up to those that can offer help and support.  


4. Don’t be afraid of failure


Failure is a part of life and everyone has endured it at some point. However, the most important thing to learn from your experience is to not fear it. The way to learn from it is to face the fear you have head on, once you have tackled it, you will be able to again and again.


Your self-worth should not rest on being perfect 100% of the time, you should value your ability to accept when things go wrong and learn from your mistakes. Value your ability to accept that things do go wrong as this will help you succeed in your new job role.


For more information on Selective Group and how we can help you find your dream job visit our website or contact us today on 01235 462 900 to speak to a consultant.


You’ve decided to leave your job in search of a new, exciting change. But just as you’re about to leave, your manager throws a massive curveball in the form of a counter offer!


This may appear to be a big complement, but there could be many reasons why your boss has suddenly decided they would like to improve your pay or working conditions, or whatever else is offered. However, in many situations it may just be too little, too late.


Here are some of the reasons why you may want to reconsider accepting a counteroffer, after all it may not be all that it seems!


It May Not Resolve All The Issues


If the only reason you are unhappy in your job is because you aren’t being paid enough, then a counteroffer may solve all your employment woes. However, it will not necessarily stop you from being overworked, under appreciated, or change your working conditions. Does the offer improve your job in the long run, or is it just a temporary solution? There must have been a reason you wanted to leave - don’t be tempted by a sugar coated offer!


Loyalty May Be Questioned


Even if you ultimately decided to stay, it does not change the fact that you, for whatever reason, were unhappy and ready to go. This could leave your manager and your co-workers questioning your loyalty to your job and leave them questioning how long you are actually going to stay.


It May Not Be Because You Are Valued


Although it may appear to be a big complement, do you really know the reasons behind why your manager now so desperately wants you to stay? Finding, hiring and training someone else is a time-consuming and inconvenient task. Does your boss really want you to stay, or are they saving themselves from such an unpleasant task? Don’t be fooled!


Is It Just Because You Are Leaving?


You worked in those conditions, with the same amount of pay for a while and there is only a hope of them changing now because you are about to leave. Do you really want to carry on working in an environment where you have to take such drastic measures to improve your job satisfaction? If you were leaving for a valid reason just go walk out the door...


Long Term Consequences


If part of your counteroffer was being given a raise or a promotion, what could happen in the long-run? Could this mean that you miss out in the next round of promotions, even though you are still working really hard? Or could it put you at risk of redundancy? Will you be in the same situation in a couple of months, unhappy and stuck?


Moving On


By staying in the same job and accepting a counter offer, you could be missing out on other opportunities that could further your career, or that could just make you happier in general. Would you regret not finding something different, or constantly be wondering what could have happened?


Are You Going To Leave Anyway?


The offer may have temporarily made life a bit easier, but there was still a reason you wanted out. If you know deep down that ultimately you are going to leave, then are you just putting yourself a couple of months behind where you would have been anyway.


Commitments With Future Employer


If you have found a new job and have got an offer, and then you have to turn around and refuse that offer after deciding to stay, then you may have missed out on any potential opportunities with that employer. Therefore you could be shutting more doors for yourself than you are opening.  


If you are looking for a new job or require more employees at your company don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on info@selective-group.com or call 01235 462 900.



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01235 462 900 - Abingdon - Head Office
01865 595 560 - Oxford
0207 186 0271 - London