"At the end of the day, what counts for me are the candidates"

Small learning groups and a cosmopolitan, multicultural atmosphere: this is what Sana Guist, a graduate in business psychology, particularly appreciated during her studies at the HMKW Berlin. Today she still works intensively with people: She works as a recruiter in the Human Resources department and ensures optimal application and selection processes during her work. In the interview she talks about her professional life.

Today Sana Guist works in the field of human resources.

Today Sana Guist works in the field of human resources.

What comes to mind when you think about your studies at HMKW?

I would describe HMKW with the terms "affiliation" and "diversity". My decision to choose the university to complete my studies was based particularly on the aspect of affiliation. The size of the institution and the size of the classes make it possible to get to know people quickly and to have the opportunity to interact with the teachers. Lecturers and professors always have an open ear for questions and suggestions so that you feel comfortable from the very beginning.

Diversity is also an aspect that is clearly visible. Multicultural classes enable a lively exchange and English has become a standard language at the university. I see this as a positive side-effect, as it improves your language skills and allows you to learn about new cultures and traditions.

You acquired a Bachelor of Arts in Media and Business Psychology at HMKW Berlin. What is your current job position?

During my studies I specialized in the field of human resources. I am currently working as a recruiter.

When did you figure out your preferred career path? How much was your choice influenced by the compulsory internship?

At the beginning of my studies, I was uncertain in which direction my interests would develop. It was only at the end of my Bachelor's degree that I realized that HR offers me the opportunity to give applicants a positive experience, speaking of the "Candidate Journey", and to take away their fear of the application process. The internship gave me first insights into Human Resources, but the final decision was not made at that point.

Why did you decide to study “Media and Business Psychology”? And what made you choose HMKW Berlin?

I have always been fascinated by psychology, but I did not want to learn pure clinical psychology. The combination subject offered me the opportunity to learn the basics of psychology and to apply them in an economic context. At that time, there were only two universities that offered business psychology as a course of study. The combination of media and business psychology was unique at HMKW.

You have also completed your Master's degree at HMKW. What were your reasons for this decision?

I made my decision mainly for the reasons mentioned above. I had already established contacts with students and had always felt comfortable at HMKW. I found the practice-oriented seminars exciting and I would have missed somewhere else that you could always approach the teachers directly with questions. Furthermore, I wanted to complete an English-speaking master's degree in order to improve my language skills and meet a new challenge. 

What are your plans for the future?

I haven't decided that yet. I like working in HR and would like to continue my work in this field. However, I will see what happens in the coming years.

 

What do you like most about your current job position? What is your biggest challenge?

The recruiting was especially interesting for me because of the applicant contact. Unfortunately, I often had to experience for myself how frustrating long application processes and unpleasant recruiters can be. I have set myself the goal of taking away the fear of the application process, especially from young people, and to accompany them on their way. I always have this in mind when I talk to superiors or applicants. Through my profession I am able to implement this in the best possible way. Usually the candidates are friendly and courteous, but unfortunately there are exceptions. However, as I have been working as a promoter at trade fairs for many years, I can also deal well with such people. At the end of the day, what counts for me are the candidates who take home a pleasant feeling from the application process.

Could you tell us more about the application phase after your graduation?

It is not easy to find a job in Berlin and often you have to expect rejections from companies. However, my studies helped me in the HR area, since the profession of business psychologist fits very well into the HR department and accordingly, recruiters are always curious when you go into a job interview with this degree. My work experience during my studies was helpful in order to come out of the interview with a positive result.

What would you tell fellow students that study at HMKW?

I can recommend HMKW to anyone who appreciates an informal atmosphere and does not want to be just one "number" among many. However, I am aware that the tuition fees should not be underestimated. However, there are financing possibilities such as BaföG, which should make the decision a little easier.

Another piece of advice would be to study in advance for the exams, so that you don't end up suffering unnecessary stress because you started studying too late. Unfortunately, the so-called "procrastination" comes out with everyone at some point and usually offers rather disadvantages. Furthermore, one should ask questions a lot and be aware that the studies also serve as a final career orientation and that one should think about where to go during this process. Ideally, by gaining initial practical experience as a working student or intern.

Thank you, Ms. Guist, for the insights into your everyday work as a recruiter. We wish you all the best and much success for your future.