A mistake that candidates often make which can completely ruin their chances of getting an offer from a company is to express interest and enthusiasm solely for the particular account/brand on which he or she would be working and not for the agency as a whole. It is great for a candidate to show passion for the particular brand which he or she would be managing. However, as I have blogged about previously, a candidate should be careful to not pigeonhole himself or herself by appearing open to only certain types of accounts. Often times the way to get one’s foot into the door of a great agency is to accept a role on a brand that might not be the “dream” account with the possibility of transitioning onto different accounts while at the agency—this is very common
That being said, a candidate should also be sure to express interest in the agency as a whole during the interview process. It is a turn off to a potential employer when a candidate seems to be interested solely in the brand and not the agency — as the agency could lose the account at some point in the future (worst case scenario) or the candidate could be moved onto a different account based upon staffing needs. These are all likely scenarios so candidates should express enthusiasm for the actual agency during an interview as well.
I met with a client recently who absolutely loved a candidate that I had presented but said one of the reasons he will not receive an offer is that he didn’t express interest for the agency, only for the brand on which he would be working. This is a shame as this mistake can be easily avoided.
Here are some ways to express interest in an agency during an interview:
<li>Make it clear that you are familiar with the agency/have done your research prior to the interview</li>
<li>Give an example of a campaign the agency has produced which inspired you</li>
<li>Give some reasons why the agency would be great for you as a next step</li>