No one really wants to admit you failed at something, especially when you are face to face with a probable future employer! The interviewer is trying to gauge how you deal with adversity and how you bounce back and learn from the experience. This may seem a difficult ask but the secret here is to try and dumb down your example and think of something that had factors beyond your control and be careful not to lay blame on others as this might backfire. The answer isn't design specific so you can be general with a unsuccessful result, maybe something social or in your home?
Design consultants are usually already very experienced in their field and they are sought out for their expertise and professionalism. You have either been a freelance consultant where all the choices and the projects have been your own creations and you have decided that now you would like more stability in a corporate business with other team members to bounce ideas off. Either transition you would need to set clear cut career goals. Making the move either from corporate employ to freelance can be very daunting. Instead of working in a defined role within a company you have decided to branch out on your own or vice versa, you have experienced freelance working and now you wish to go to a Company. Whichever way your career leads you, you know you have years worth of gained talent and the necessary expertise to integrate well into both. It is just a matter of choice how you plan out your goals and aspirations to make a success of all you do.
The interviewer from a design company only wish to want hire people who are passionate about what they do so if you can identify key factors of what makes you love what you do then your passion will show through and everything else should follow. Outline the sense of satisfaction you feel when you have interpreted the client's project perfectly and they are so pleased with the result they want to rave about you and your work and even show it on social network sites! A design consultant has an eye for creativity and has to get into the minds of their client's. They know roughly what they are after but it is your job to understand and adhere to it but also with your expertise expand on the basics and add your own personal flair. The sense of satisfaction that you have achieved your brief and brought it beyond expectations is such a rewarding feeling you cannot suppress that and the interviewer will see it too.
Of course when you are trying to interpret project ideas from someone else, you have to be mindful to the fact that you are encountering different personalities and opinions. If you have a clear idea what the end result will turn out like you will probably have changed it somewhat from what the client first envisaged due to your skill and vision but this might not be what the client had initially thought it would look like finished which can lead to a conflict of interest. When it comes to design preferences they are never an exact science. It is the interpretation of those ideas and how they are expressed that make or breaks a successful project so if you encounter a difficult client a modicum of compromise should be adopted but stand your ground as your professionalism and expertise will know what looks aesthetically correct in the end. This will show an interviewer you are prepared to face adversity but are still prepared to bring common sense and expertise into the equation to turn a negative into a positive result
It would be well worth keeping your schooling experience relevant to the subjects associated with design and art and crafts which would be essential for pursuing a career to consultant level. Of course American English and math and a science subjects all would be useful study as there would be intense customer liaisons and also mathematical calculations e.g. if you were an interior design consultant careful measurements for room sizes would be necessary. A well rounded schooling will prove to the interviewer that you had a good start in your life and having the yearning and dedication to further study for degrees and work your way up to consultant level status.
When you are a consultant at some point in your career, a significant proportion of your job is to manage people’s differing attitudes and behaviors. When the clients seem unhappy or disagree with your design concepts it feels like you have met an impasse. Clients always like to feel important and calling all the shots so if you step in with a listening ear then hopefully this makes them more willing to listen to your next point, which hopefully is a compromise and you can move on to a successful solution. Keep positive with your answer and show the interviewer you were ready to compromise over adversity whether it was an incident in your past or present.
If you have reached a consultant's stage in your career you would have probably been working for yourself for several years and offering your services to your clients, so it would be certainly in your best interest to maintain a good reputation by working as many hours as it takes to conclude the project successfully, on time and on budget. As the saying goes... 'It takes a lifetime to build a good reputation but only a minute to destroy it' Client's are known to talk and you need recommendations for more work to increase your business so if you have proved to them you have gone beyond the call of duty which involved working long hours and often putting in overtime and they are totally satisfied, they are your best critic and that will be reflected in positive customer feedback who won't hesitate to recommend you to their friends etc. If you are entering into a Company then the same applies, if you want to show how diligent and committed you are; explain your previous experiences.
Design consultants are highly creative and skilled professionals who specialize in giving their clients design ideas that are both aesthetically pleasing as well as functional. Design consultants may specialize in three niche areas - interior design, graphic design or fashion design. The exact scope of a design consultant's role depends on their field of specialty. Each niche field requires a completely different thought process and skill set.
A bachelor's degree is the minimum educational qualification required for all three fields of specialization. This would be followed by a vocational program in the specific design field. Because of the nature of the job, licensure may be required to work as an interior design consultant. Design consultants must be highly creative and have a strong aesthetic sense. Excellent analytical, problem-solving, communication, time-management and organizational skills are also essential in this role.
At your interview, the interviewing panel may decide to test your skills by giving you a mock situation and asking you to come up with a solution that integrates both form and function. You must also carry along your portfolio with photographs of some of your best works. Be prepared to answer questions about your strengths and weaknesses and why you think you are the best person for the job. Mock Questions has compiled a list of probable interview questions. Check them out and give some thought to how you would answer them. This will help you to be better prepared for the upcoming interview.