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“How do I handle it when they say it’s just a meeting, not an interview?”

ESS Candidate Newsletter – MARCH 2023

Columbus, OH – MARCH 2023

In this month’s, ask the recruiter, we talk about meetings vs interviews.

Introduction – Aaron Wandtke
Recently Filled Jobs
Ask the Recruiter “How do I handle it when they say it’s just a meeting, not an interview”


This weekend most people will move our clocks forward an hour. The benefit of this is the amount of sunlight we’ll start receiving next week. With that additional sunlight comes additional opportunity.

For the past few years, the second quarter at ESS has had the highest or second highest number of new openings to work on. As companies wrap up the first quarter of the year, they are quickly turning to initiatives they committed to in the previous year. The second quarter is the time to begin those if they hope to have them completed by the end of the year. That need provides opportunity for people interested in making a job change.

If you would like to discuss your background or if you are one of those managers looking to upgrade their team, please let me know.


“So and so wants to meet her. It’s not an interview, it’s just a meeting.” That phrase or anything related to two people talking and it NOT being called an interview makes our skin crawl. After 20+ years of doing this, we know every meeting, regardless of what it’s called, is an interview. Below are three tips to help you prepare for “just a meeting or formality”:

  1. Prepare questions – Although they may call it a formality, you must treat it like an interview and come prepared, locked in and ready to talk and listen. An essential part of any interview are the questions you prepare for each interviewer. You must prepare questions for this meeting.
  2. Look the part – Whether it’s coffee, lunch, or a meeting in the office you need to look how you want to present yourself for an interview. If the meeting involves food, please remember you are not there to eat, you are there to talk.
  3. Close the meeting – How you end a meeting or interview is important. Company’s frequently, tell us, “they didn’t close the interview” or “I’m not sure if they want this job or to work for us.” Keep that in mind when you finish meetings. Indicate your interest and try to take the next steps.

Even though you may have had 8 interviews and you feel frustrated, the 9th meeting is still an interview, even if it’s with someone you have already met. When people let down their guard or become more relaxed, that’s when opportunities are lost.

If you need help or other ideas about this, please call or email.

I can be reached at 614-885-8490 or by e-mail at