In this article you will learn what is a cabin crew assessment day.
Is it different from a regular interview?
Is it harder? Easier?
Do you have to prepare something extra?
Is it more efficient than a classic interview?
Do more or less people get hired after the assessment?
I had many conversations this week with amazing people who dream to be flight attendants. While their experience, age and nationality differed, there was one thing in common: they are passionate about this job and they all wanted to know what exactly they need to do to increase their chances of success. I was planning to write an article about some of the activities on the cabin crew assessment day, but I realized that so many of you are just starting on this road, so we need to talk about the basics.
A clarification of terms first:
Assessment Day (or Assessment Center) – Is a process employing multiple techniques and multiple assessors to produce judgements regarding the extent to which a participant displays selected competencies.
Assessor – An individual trained to observe, record, classify and make reliable judgement about the behaviors of those being assessed.
Exercise (or Task) – A simulation or technique designed to elicit behaviors related to performance requirements of the job.
A dictionary definition: “an assessment” is an evaluation, an appraisal or a rating. It means to examine and judge carefully the value and worth of something.
The professionals explain: ‘Recruitment assessment days offers several advantages over conventional one-to-one interviewing. Group selection enables a number of people from the organization to observe a number of job candidates, as they go through a series of specially designed activities. It also offers the recruiting organization an excellent opportunity to present the company and the job in a very professional way, thus appealing to and attracting the best candidates. Also, the unsuccessful candidates leave the process with a very positive impression of the organization and the experience as a whole. This type of recruitment also enables people to show the best version of themselves, often working on real job-related scenarios, which removes much of the guesswork about people’s true abilities. One-to-one interviews tend to favor the ‘professional interviewee’ types, who present very well, but who might then fail to deliver.’
During the cabin crew assessment, the focus will be on a set of varied exercises designed to simulate different aspects of the work environment. These exercises establish how closely your behaviors match the cabin crew role.
It is important to be aware that each exercise has been designed to assess a candidate’s behaviors in performing a task.
No matter how trivial or petty an exercise may appear to you, remember that the original psychologist designed it to assess how well you display the required behaviors for the role.
The cabin crew assessment day is structured as follows:
1. INTRODUCTION and Q&A
The day starts with all the candidates getting a name tag and a number and given the ‘house rules’.
The company presentation comes next. The assessors will give some information about when and how the company was founded, what is the airline’s promise to their customers, company slogan, working environment, numbers (fleet size, number of destinations, number of employees, number of passengers carried every year, revenue), association with other brands (sponsorship, etc) and testimonials from some of the existing cabin crew, talking about working for the airline and the cabin crew lifestyle.
After the presentation you will have the time to ask questions.
Prepare in advance one or two relevant questions that might benefit the entire group.
2. REACH TEST
As per the airline requirements, you will need to have an arm reach of 212 cm – if you interview for Emirates*** and Qatar Airways or 210 cm if your assessment is for Etihad Airways. The assessors will test you can comfortably touch the vertical arm reach mark.
***In addition to the arm reach, Emirates also requires a minimum height of 160 cm.
You will be split in groups, and each group will be given an exercise. The subject may be airline related or not. In order to complete the task, everybody from the group must understand what they have to do and help each other. The members of the group need to have discussions of how are they going to achieve the task. Everybody should participate. The cabin crew job requires you to be enthusiastic, involved, a good listener, friendly and calm under pressure. These skills will be shown during the group exercise.
Teamwork means working confidently within a group, contributing your own ideas effectively, taking a share of the responsibility, being assertive – rather than passive or aggressive, accept and learn from criticism and giving positive, constructive feedback to others. Ask yourself what is normally your role in a group. When you are among your friends, are you the leader that takes charge and wants to answer all the questions? Or maybe you are the one who always suggests new ideas on how to approach a situation? Or are you the critic who only sees the negative aspects of your group performance? Analyze yourself and ask others how do they perceive you.
The airlines need to recruit people who are able to cooperate, solve problems and work well in teams.
4. ENGLISH TEST
You will be given 30 minutes for the English test. It is all in writing and it can include a short essay on a given topic such as: ‘Which is the most exciting place you ever visited and why’, ‘Why do you want to be a flight attendant’, ‘Why do you want to work for our airline’. There are also tests that include a short newspaper article followed by questions based on the article. Sometimes simple grammar is also included. Keep in mind that your English proficiency is tested during the entire day, from the Q&A, to the group exercise and final interview.
5. FINAL INTERVIEW
Once you’ve made it past the initial assessment, the company has made the evaluation you are qualified for the job. The purpose of a final interview is to determine whether you would be a good fit for the company. The cabin crew final interview usually lasts 30 to 60 minutes, and you will be asked questions based on your resume, experience, education and performance during the day. Typically, the interview starts with a question to break the ice such as: ‘What did you have for breakfast?’ ‘How did you arrive here today?’ Once the conversation starts, you should expect the following questions to come up:
What major challenges and problems did you face in your job? How did you handle them?
What did you like or dislike about your previous job?What was the biggest accomplishment / failure in this position?
What was it like working for your supervisor?
Who was your best boss and who was the worst?
Why are you leaving your job?
What is your greatest weakness?
What is your greatest strength?
How would you describe yourself?
How do you handle stress and pressure?
Tell me about a time when you had to deal with a co-worker who wasn’t doing his/her fair share of the work. What did you do and what was the outcome?
Tell me about a time that you helped someone.
Are you a team player or a team leader?
What motivates you?
When was the last time you were angry? What happened?
Why do you want to be a flight attendant?
Why should we hire you?
What can you contribute to this company?
How long do you expect to remain employed with this company?
Review these question and consider an appropriate response based on your skills and experience.
There are no exact answers which will fit everybody, but bear in mind that for the cabin crew position there are a set of skills expected from a successful candidate: great communication skills, working in a team, keeping calm during stressful situations, assertiveness and cultural awareness. Consider them when preparing your answers.
You don’t need to memorize an answer, but do think about what you’re going to say, so you’re not put on the spot during the interview.
Now that you know what to expect during the cabin crew assessment day, start practicing your answers and your reactions. Go there confident and prepared and you will definitely be successful! In the following articles you can explore in more detail each part of the interview.
Learn all the insider secrets on how to be successful from the first try HERE