If so, can you answer this interview question:
“Cuénteme de una vez que usó su español para resolver un problema.”
As with any part of your résumé, you may be asked to back up the claims you have made there.
In this case, you have to prepare in three ways:
1- Relax and take a deep breath. Fully expect to be asked a question in Spanish so that you aren’t taken by surprise.
2- Be ready to use the formal “Ud.” This is a tough one for second language learners–the informal “tú” is more comfortable for most learners, but in a professional context use of the formal could be important.
Imagine that the company wants to expand into international markets and needs someone to communicate with managers and potential clients abroad–you would have to be comfortable approaching those people formally.
In your everyday life, pause and think about it: I just said “how’s it going?” to someone; that would be “¿cómo está?” in the formal.
Once you get comfortable with the verbs, remember that possessive pronouns (“su” instead of “tu”), and direct and indirect object pronouns also have to correspond to the formal register (“lo,” “la,” “le”). You see this in the proposed interview question above: the command is formal–cuénteme (not the informal “cuéntame”), the verb is conjugated in Ud.–“usó” (not the informal “usaste”), and the formal possessive pronoun “su” is used instead of “tu”.
3- Prepare some answers to common interview questions in Spanish. This is the best way to be ready–and you have to prepare your answers to common interview questions anyway. Think of a few anecdotes that could support your reason for wanting the job, a challenge you overcame, a summary of your language experiences in professional contexts.
Take a minute now to craft an answer to the question: “Cuénteme de una vez que usó su español para resolver un problema” and then practice it while you’re walking around, driving, or otherwise have your mind free for a few moments.
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Darcy Lear is a career coach specializing in job search documents, professional school applications, and interview preparation. For one-on-one support in preparing for your job search or to set up a campus workshop, contact Darcy: firstname.lastname@example.org