By Marcy Kravit, CMCA, AMS, PCAM, CFCAM / Published January 2022
Editor’s Note: To see all articles that have been published in this series, visit The CAM Employment Process Overview.
In “The Application Process,” published in the December 2021 FLCAJ, we provided guidance and support you may need in applying for the perfect job. The purpose of this article is to review and discuss “The Interview Process.” Recruiters will review the resumes and navigate how to narrow it down to a few candidates to begin the interview process.
When interviewing for a community association management position, it is critical that managers take note of the process and know what to do, what not to do, what to say, what not to say, how to dress, and most importantly, are prepared.
For the board and management company, it is essential that they pose the right questions to assess if the candidate can do the job. Listen and record the answers of the candidates and keep the candidate on track. Interviewing CAM licensed managers and finding the perfect match is not an easy process. To determine whether a candidate is the right fit for the community is like dating. The more dates you go on, the more you will be able to close in on the right choice. Forbes magazine stresses that the interviewer should be as prepared as the interviewee.
Social media is a good tool to find out more about the candidate and for the candidate to learn more about the company, the board, and/or the community.
First impressions on a first date are important. You never get a second chance if you strike out at the first impression! The first interview is like the first date and reflects on whether it will be “love at first sight” in establishing a memorable connection. These days, many boards and recruiters are performing interviews via Zoom.
If this is the case, the manager should ensure that his or her computer is in a quiet place without potential distractions. To ensure everything goes smoothly, log in and test your Zoom prior to the interview and set up a professional background.
Once you get started, here are some tips to keep in mind:
From a recruiter’s perspective, they are seeking someone who is excited about the role and/or the company and comes across as being genuinely interested in the position.
Managers need to be prepared to answer questions. Give details and examples.
Question: Why should we hire you?
Sample ways to answer:
Question: Why are you seeking a new position, or why have you changed jobs so often?
Sample ways to answer:
Other items you might be asked:
Do your homework. Research the company, board, and property. Prepare questions to ask them. Do not give a “no” answer when asked, “Do you have any questions you would like to ask?” It makes you look like you are not interested or fully committed.
Carmen Rodriguez, Director of Talent Acquisition for AKAM, provides her insight regarding the interview process. “When I worked in the staffing industry, I will never forget a young graduate from Georgetown University who was interviewing for a branch manager position with our firm. She shared a short memorable “STAR” story with me. Instead of telling me a little bit about herself, she prepared a story about how she was a perfect fit for the position and the company. She used a modified version of what I use to interview managers called the STAR method. 20 years later, I clearly remember her and her story.”
Below is a template to help you prepare an impactful short story to talk about in your interview, which will differentiate you from the rest.
Connect the dots and tie the story to the company and position you are interviewing for.
Immediately after the interview the manager should take notes.
Send a thank you for the interview note. Email versus a handwritten note is preferred for these reasons.
In the next article, we will discuss the job offer, benefits, background check, salary negotiations, contract, and roles and responsibilities. We hope that you find this information helpful and wish you much success in preparing for the interview process.
Marcy Kravit, CMCA, AMS, PCAM, CFCAM
Education Program Director
Marcy Kravit has 20-plus years’ experience managing community associations in South Florida. She has established a reputation as being passionate about service, driven by challenges, and undeterred by obstacles. Marcy is committed to providing five-star service and educating others in raising the level of professionalism in the industry. She works for Hotwire as director of community association relations. Marcy has earned every higher education credential offered by CAI and is recognized by Florida Community Association Professionals (FCAP) as a CFCAM. Marcy is a contributing writer to the Florida Community Association Journal (FLCAJ) and serves FCAP as their education program director.
This article is part of a multi-part series as an overview of the CAM profession and the employment process.