My telephone interview involved a series of questions which required me to describe personal experiences and how I dealt with them. For example, I was asked, 'describe a time when you had to take charge of a team'. The follow up questions involved a more detailed analysis of why I did what I did, the ways in which this affected other group members, and what the results of my actions were. After about 5 experience-related questions there was a more general chat about why I thought I would fit the job well, what makes me think I would make a good manager and why KFC.
Most difficult question
What changes would you make to the brand? - This was a difficult question because they are clearly interested in meeting someone with bright new ideas, but the balance needs to be made so as not to change everything they stand for as a company!
What are your weaknesses? - This question is always a difficult one, but it is quite common therefore it is helpful to come up with a few answers before being interviewed.
Do you see competition as a challenge? - Clearly, competition poses challenges, but I think they were looking for a positive answer, for example, competition makes you strive harder to get where you want to be, and makes you perform to your best potential.
Where do you see yourself in 3 years' time? - This was a difficult question, as you have to either be vague about the company and say personal goals or jump in and assume you will get this job. I took the latter approach, and said I saw myself managing a team in KFC and creating new brand ideas, and that I saw myself becoming part of the senior management team in years to come.
Be yourself. It is a company that is a little like marmite - if you think you would enjoy it, it will show. If not, don't apply as they will see right through it!
Make sure you know everything you can about the company. Everyone at the assessment centre has the same chances (i.e. looking online at all the various things KFC has been up to) so make sure you go a step further and look for something that particularly interests you (for example a video about how KFC helps the environment) and mention this in an interview to get one step ahead.
Experiences at the assessment centre
At the assessment day, there was a number of different activities, including a one-on-one interview with senior management (20 minutes), a group discussion involving designing a new KFC brand (which lasted 1 hour and involved each coming up with a new brand, discussing ideas together, then choosing between us which idea would be best to go for and then discussing finances and logistics), and a group task (also 1 hour) in which we were given a budget and asked to make changes to a KFC store for a new opening - we had to chose different options which had different effects on customers, staff and overall appearance of the KFC brand. I was criticised for not going over budget, which is something that didn't even occur to me, but was what they were looking for - someone who would push the boundaries. It was a fairly small assessment day, with only 8 of us invited, which made it seem less competitive and more relaxed, however there were 8 members of the management team evaluating our performance which was daunting at times.
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