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This is maybe a small thing, but to me a really important one: as a job candidate, if you treat people with less social status than faculty (students, administrative staff, janitorial staff, whatever) less well than you treat people with as much or more social status than faculty, I will immediately not want to hire you.

Be nice

@Tenured: small, but amazing how many people fall down on it. I'd add waiters to the list, when out at a dinner, etc.

~Mean to Waiters

I've consistently gotten the same advice. They're hiring a colleague, not just a teacher/researcher. For many of them, especially in small departments, they'll be spending the rest of their career with you and a handful of other people. In smaller, more rural areas, you might be a large part of their social network. So don't be afraid to have a personality. Be friendly. Engage with them as philosophers, as potential peers (nobody wants to hire someone who acts like a grad student), and as potential friends.


@Tenured This is of course correct. However, it would be preferable if people who are jerks did not temporarily hide their jerkiness during the campus visit and then only later reveal their jerkhood when they become your colleague. So my advice is "be yourself". If there are some unattractive parts of your character, I want to see them clearly so that I can make a more accurate judgment about how collegial you would be.

Bill Vanderburgh

My best advice is to have your curiosity on display. Ask about the institution, the students, the town, your potential colleagues' research. The best way to seem interesting is to be interested. It both increases how intelligent people judge you to be and how collegial they judge you to be. (The flip side of this that candidates who have no questions seem like they are just going through the motions and are either duds or not interested in the position.)

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