November 15, 2011

Crown Winners:  Lessons for Success in the Workplace Part 3

In the first two parts of “Crown Winners,” we looked at lessons for success with Miss Rodeo Nevada 2011. This week we peek behind the scenes of three local pageants where participants will politely remind you they are scholarship pageants, not beauty pageants. Emphasis is on talent, knowledge and poise - traits well associated with success in the workplace.

It is made clear to each contestant of Miss Reno/Sparks, Miss UNR, and Miss Teen Reno/Sparks that she represents her city, whether or not she is the crown winner. The world is her stage and how she is perceived reflects on Washoe County and the Silver State. The crown winner treats her position as a one-year “temporary” job. It is not just a walk in the spotlight.

Shirley Lundsford, Director Miss Reno/Sparks & Miss Teen Reno/Sparks, Jennifer Marcussen, Executive Director Miss UNR, and Judy Griggs, Interview Coach, teach competitors how to interview for the job of the crown winner. They can’t win on talent alone, as seen by a breakdown of the scoring:

Talent = 35%
Personal Interview = 25%
On-Stage Interview = 5%
Evening Wear = 20%
Swimsuit = 15%

Interviews make up 30% of the judging. Questions about current events, government officials, state history and a wide variety of subjects are asked. Contestants prepare by doing a significant amount of research. They are coached on facial expressions, body language and not to “make something up” if they don’t know an answer. Let the judge know, “I’m not sure about the answer.  I’ll look it up because it sounds interesting!”

The next time you face a job interview or contact with a client or customer think of yourself as a scholarship pageant competitor. Yes, men, you too can learn from the following three tips:

Walk the Talk

Walk with confidence. Show you are non-aggressive and non-invasive. Introduce yourself with a smile. Let your facial expression say, “I’m happy to be here!” Good eye contact shows you are interested and 100% engaged. Preparation includes advanced research, which lets the company, client or customer know you care enough to serve them well.

My Reputation Precedes Me

No matter where we are in life, we are always being looked at and judged. Whether standing for self, family, company, Nevada or the human race, be aware all the time of who you are and how you represent. Crown Winners are careful where they go and know that “perception is reality.” One adverse photo or comment on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or a blog could cause irreparable damage to a reputation or career.

The Crown is Not Won by Talent Alone

Break job interviews and face-to-face meetings into the following scores:

Talent/Skills = 35%
Interview = 30%
Grooming = 20%
Appropriate Attire = 15%

Remember the entire package counts. Talent does not equal the job or the sale.

Good luck in your search to be a winner!


Written by Judy Griggs, Senior Staffing Partner and Susan Fix, Community Liaison Partner at Applied Staffing Solutions. Griggs has over sixteen years experience in the staffing industry with her current focus on placements, building client relationships and providing excellent customer service. Fix has worked 15 years in staffing services performing outside sales, recruiting, permanent and temporary placement coordination, career counseling, customer service and social media/business.

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