Help...Confused as to exactly what prospective employer is asking for...

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2013
Help...Confused as to exactly what prospective employer is asking for...
Wed, 03-27-2013 - 6:08am

Yesterday I received an email response to a resume I submitted for an Executive Assistant position.  

In his response the prospective employer made the following request:

 "Here is a brief overview of exactly what is taking place...take a few minutes to read it over and then respond back to me if you want to confirm your interest in the position. If you do, then tell me some more about you - not your experience in the work place, but what you want me to know about you before I made a decision to interview you or not."

Correct me if I'm wrong but, typically, when a prospective employer says: "Tell me about yourself", your response should be confined to telling about yourself as it pertains to the job you are applying for. You don't include personal details about your life.

But it certainly sounds to me like personal information is EXACTLY what is being requested.

My response is expected today so any insight anyone can give would be greatly appreciated.


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-11-2012

Hi! How very interesting. I would keep it very professional and only use your personal qualities that relate to the job qualifications. Be careful not to volunteer any information that the interviewer is not legally allowed to ask you. The interviewer is probably looking for clues on how you are going to fit in the team and how you can help them. I'd be brief and offer a few things that would be interesting but useful. Like maybe "I am a person who really pays attention to detail.I pride myself on getting things done correctly and on time. When I commit to something, I commit fully and pour myself into it..." Something like that. Maybe give an example of something you've done (like some hobby or DIY project) that you are really proud of.

I hope this helps and good luck!

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-16-2013

That's a really interesting question.  It does sound like they want to hear a little personal information.  I think I'd keep it professional, with a few sprinkles of personal information. I'd focus on what you think would be of interest to the interviewer as well as your most important accomplishments. I'm guessing the employer wants to know what you can bring to the job, how well you'd fit into the team, and how your personal experience and accomplishments can help their organization. Wishing you the best of luck.  Please let us know how it goes!

~ Ashley ~

~ Expecting Our First in SEPTEMBER! ~

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-27-2012

It does sound like an odd question.  Like the others, I would reply using information that relates to your professional experience.  Include any volunteering, community work, etc.  I would avoid discussing your marital status and children (if any) or giving any answer that hints at children or your marital status.

Avatar for ubergeek
Community Leader
Registered: 09-23-2010


While keeping it on the professional end of things, I'd avoid making statements about your abilities (I'm trustworthy, focused, etc.). He's looking for personal info and specifically said not your work place experience. I'd talk about your hobbies/interests ("I'm a amateur photographer, often shooting landscape." or "I love to help out at the local soup kitchen."). You could talk about your love of travel (if you do) or if you've moved from a different state ("I'm a transplanted New Yorker living here for 10 years now. I'm always amazed at how different X is compared to NY!"). Keep away from family talk, that could go either way—he could be fishing to see if you have a family you need to rush home to. I'd keep it to a paragraph, maybe 6-10 sentences max. 

Good luck!!

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-16-2002

You don't mention what was in the brief overview of the position, but I would say keep it as professional as possible, using the overview as a guideline.  You can mention your interest in the field, or the line of work, how you feel you could contribute to the company, etc.  I agree that it's an odd request to be making, but I would not get too personal here, you have no idea what this pesron wants but if you make it sound like you are interested and want to know more about the position/company, perhaps that would be enough.  Good luck!

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

.  -Albert Einstein