Role Play

Role plays are becoming more common within Assessment Centres. It’s a chance for employers to see how you react in a ‘real life’ situation. There are a few ways that interviewers can conduct role plays:

  • You may be talked through a scenario with the interviewer
  • They may give you a script or a passage to read
  • It may be an individual role play or as a group

Role plays tend to be popular for sales and customer-facing roles and the job description will give a good indication of what type of role play you can expect and what they will be looking for. The assessors may take a role as well and you may be observed by other candidates.

Assessors will be looking for you to demonstrate:

  1. Professionalism
  2. Listening skills
  3. Assertiveness
  4. Empathy
  5. Ownership
  6. Persuasion
  7. Understanding of what the role entails

Understand the company, role and job description inside out. Understanding the role will give you some clues as to what your role play may include. It will also help you know what skills and qualities the employer will be looking out for, for example:

  • For a Sales or Marketing role, be prepared for role plays that include trying to persuade clients to buy your products (similar to Explore Learning and Sagar Wright’s role plays). 
  • For a customer-facing role, be prepared for role plays dealing with difficult customers or maintaining excellent customer service (similar to those by Enterprise Rent-a-Car, Sky and Marks and Spencer).

Understand the task and immerse yourself in the role play. Carefully read the brief and be a good sport.  Feedback from employers and participants highlighted the importance of fully understanding the task and being able to apply this on the spot. This shows a quick and adaptable brain and the ability to make good decisions under pressure – like you would in a real situation. 

Be yourself but professional and engaging - Stay calm.  In a real situation, you would always need to be professional despite your own feelings or the actions of clients, customers or colleagues in the scenario. But don’t be a robot; let you personality come through without compromising your integrity. 

Key Points

  • Read all of the information very carefully
  • Highlight or make notes on the key points
  • Decide on your objective
  • Think about the skills you need to demonstrate
  • Ensure that it has a measurable outcome and that this is clear to the assessor 
Last modified: 
Tuesday, July 22, 2014 - 12:06