When is a Coffee Not a Coffee?

… when it’s as part of the Interview Process for a job!

Coffee drinking in Ireland is Huge Business

Coffee drinking in Ireland by professionals has become a huge growth area.  A third of Irish consumers purchase coffee out of home at least once a day, which is up almost 10% year on year! (Source: Food for Thought February 2017 ). It’s a social activity.  Office workers pop out to grab a takeaway coffee frequently and it is viewed as a “break” or social opportunity.

“Let’s have a coffee to go through the final job details”

When a potential employer suggests a “coffee” to a prospective employee as part of a selection process, it is always formal, never social! You might ask why would a potential employer want to meet a prospective employee over a coffee? The main benefit is that typically people relax in this scenario and when a person relaxes their guard comes down. Should an area of concern exist, it will generally come to light during the “coffee”.  It is a more informal stage of the interview process.

Going for a coffee is a great way to get to know someone in a more informal setting

Where no concern exists, the “coffee” meeting is a great opportunity to get to know each other in a more personal way. At the end of the day, we all spend most of our waking hours working.  It’s important to enjoy spending time with the people we work with. When we have more in common with colleagues in the work place, it makes for a more congenial place.  It also generally results in longevity of employment.

These chats over coffee tend to happen mainly towards the end of a selection process.

These meetings form a great way to discuss the specifics of an offer on the table.  It can be a very positive experience and starts the employment relationship in an amicable and friendly way. The main thing is to remember that the prospective relationship is that of employer-employee.  It is always important to retain an element of formality and professionalism in that relationship type.