If I don’t get along with my supervisor, what should I say if the interviewer asks to speak with my boss?

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 18,261
    Career counselor Karen Chopra gives tips on how to talk positively about a past supervisor you didn’t get along with.

    Host: If I don't get along with my supervisor, what should I say if the interviewer asked to speak with my boss?

    Karen James Chopra: You need to find a way to talk about your current supervisor or your difficult supervisors in a way that's authentic. So think hard about what it is that you can truthfully say you admire and respect about the person that you worked with or that you learned from them, even if you didn't particularly like their teaching method that you've learned from your previous supervisor and then say that, "My last supervisor was wonderful about project management, about making sure that deadlines were setup and then making sure that we all met the deadlines and I learned a tremendous amount from her about how to manage projects and bring them in on time.

    " being able to talk positively about them in an authentic way then allows you to say, "Overall, we might not have been the best fit, but it was a good experience having worked for her and I will take away the lessons to my next job.

    " So if you can't avoid them talking to your supervisor, you may also want to say to them, "Well, here is what I think my supervisor will say about me. I am not sure that I completely agree, but I can understand from her perspective where she is coming from so that you inoculate them about a supervisor's potential negative comments about you. Again, what you are demonstrating is, "She may these things. I understand that I am not worried and so you shouldn't be either.

    " For most difficult questions that's what you are looking for is you want to look as unconcerned as possible about the difficult things that they are asking about.