“To travel means to live” says our trainee Laura, future QA Cabin Crew

Interview by Nicoleta Gherman, Trainer and Founder

Ever since she was a little girl, Laura Porime wanted the best things to happen to her. She had a feeling this life has so much more to offer and the fact that she just had to risk and find out by herself. In other words, when I asked her to describe her life, she could only describe it in one word: improving.

“Becoming a cabin crew for me means more than I can describe in just a few words. It’s the feeling that my gut had towards this dream job, that it’s something that would fit me perfectly. It all came down to an expression that guided me in choosing this career that will change my life entirely: Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.”

How did you find out about the cabin crew job?

When I was much younger I heard about a girl in my town that was about to become a cabin crew and for me, it sounded very impressive the opportunities that come with this job which are about discovering this big world and getting to know other people and cultures. At that moment I knew exactly I wanted that for myself. In time I met other girls who took this road. I knew that I should try to have this incredible job by the time I finish my studies. This year by chance I met a girl at the gym who turned into a friend of mine. She had worked at Primera Air as cabin crew and was just getting a job at Qatar Airways. I think in that moment I knew that this is the sign I was waiting for and decided to apply as a cabin crew at Qatar Airways. She told me about Nicoleta Gherman, a former Qatar Airways cabin crew and the courses and private courses she gives on how to get this dream job at any airline and informs you exactly what it really means to be a cabin crew.

What do you think is the greatest achievement of your life till now?

I would definitely say that my family is my greatest achievement for me. The word family is where love begins and never ends and I consider myself very lucky by having them. After them, my biggest achievement is definitely becoming a cabin crew at the best airline in the world, a 5-star one, which is Qatar Airways. Is something that I’m still not realizing it yet, it’s all overwhelming for me at this moment.

How did you prepare for the interviews?

As I was saying, as soon as I heard about Nicoleta I decided to take one of her course. I knew that as soon as I got my Master degree I would take the risk and go for the recruitment interview with Qatar Airways. At first, I thought I knew so much about this dream job and from what I heard from other cabin crews. But once I attended World-class NG course, I realized that I really did not know many things. Nicoleta has provided me and the other colleagues with so much information about what means to be a cabin crew from her experience and not only. She explained to us what this job really is about, what are going to be our duties and how this job will be a life-changing experience. While taking the course Nicoleta has taught us so many things in order to pass our interviews, from practical exercises to written examination, to explain what are the attributes for this job and cherished with us many stories from her experience for over 10 years as an international cabin crew.

I am very grateful to her because she believed in me and pushed me towards my success and she stood by my side during both interviews for Qatar Airways and for that I will always have gratitude and respect for her! I will always remember from the first day of the course, as the course was being held for 3 days, that she told us that no matter what, you must never give up or let yourself be discouraged not just in this job but in life as well. More than just motivated, Nicoleta encouraged us to improve our weak spots during the course and guided us step by step with every company’s requests that we had to deal with in order to pass their interviews. She also kept us informed periodically after finishing the course about the interviews that were going to take place in Romania or in other countries.

Were there any differences between the two Qatar Airways interviews that you attended?

Unfortunately, my first Qatar Airways interview that was held in Bucharest did not really go as I planned. I knew I wanted it so much and how hard it is to really succeed in having it. At the same time, I had so much pressure on my mind because there were only a few days between the interview and giving my Master dissertation. I was one of the lucky ones out of around 300 other candidates who had received an invitation on the first day, as it was an Open Day interview. The assessment day was going to be on the next day. The first examination during the assessment day was the English test and that was also the end of the interview steps for me. Because I knew I had to do my best, and it was a test held by the clock (40 minutes) with an essay to write and other 4 parts of grammar I did not pay much attention to an exercise and lost my points for that. I was very disappointed when I found out I did not pass it, could not understand why I wasn’t more concentrated and blamed myself for this failure. By the next days, I ditched this hard feeling that wasn’t good for me and decided that the next time I will apply, it will be my moment. At that point, I knew already how the recruitment process goes and I knew next time will be easier for me.

I also felt lucky at the same time because I received an invitation at my first attempt. That had to mean something, as many candidates did not receive an invitation even after trying several times. As you know, without the invitation, you can’t participate in the recruitment tests.

The second interview was in Cluj-Napoca, the city I live in and the interview process was held all in one day. By the time I passed the invitation step I knew that the English test was next and I knew I would kick it. When I heard that I passed it I was so relieved. However, I knew that I had other steps coming but I passed them all with success. I did not realize in that moment when the recruiters were presenting the movies about the company that I was one of the lucky final 8 candidates. It was a feeling I will never forget like I wanted it so much for me, but at the same time, I did not believe that I actually succeeded and got it!

What have you found to be the toughest aspect of passing the Final Interview?

Definitely, the toughest aspect after the final interview is waiting to receive your acceptance mail and all that process of waiting for months the Golden Call. But at the same time, you must enjoy most of your time at home and with your family and friends before you have to go to a new country. Today I will depart for Doha and a new life is waiting for me.

How did you evaluate your performance?

After my first failure, I knew that I had to try again and that my moment would come. I can’t say it was easy when I heard I did not pass my first interview. As I said I was very angry and blamed myself for failing it the days after it. Other friends who work in this industry and experienced this failure at other interviews told me not to take it on me, but I think everybody has to overcome this failure in their own way. I also believe that this failure helped me very much and straightened me for the interview that was coming. I knew I had to be more prepared and stay focused and everything would come naturally. So I started learning more and prepared myself more intensively for a week, before the second interview.

I realized that in order to pass an interview, first, you have to be very confident of your own strengths because what you really want and what you have in your head can’t be taken away by anybody. Be yourself and also stay focused and no matter what, do not let yourself be discouraged by one or more failures, but use them to improve yourself, to your own advantage.

Can you tell us some of the qualities that a professional flight attendant should have and what is the importance of proficiency in several languages?

For me the best qualities would be to be friendly and kind, first of all, to love to work in a team because you are as one on the plane, to be very patient, organized and with a special attention towards details. This job is all about the experience on board, which is an important part of the journey itself. Knowing as many languages as you can is very important because you can approach people more easily and understand them and their needs.

Also, you have to be professional and perform a 5-star customer service on board. Being the best cabin crew working for the best airline is about many components and you need all of them to truly satisfy the customers. It involves being kind, polite and a professional face for the company. It also involves listening carefully to customer needs and concerns.

By listening is about caring everything in one’s power to efficiently and precisely serve each customer. Finally, is important to find solutions for the customers. All of these components lead to happy and loyal customers, which I know is the ultimate goal of any airline.

Which of the cabin crew benefits attracted you more: seeing the world for free or the financial part?

Definitely seeing the world and experience everything is coming with it is worth more than everything, because to travel means to live! The financial part for me is just a bonus. That comes with it because is my job to be a cabin crew and to travel the world, getting paid by doing this and for that, I am very lucky.

The fact that you are going to see the entire world, experience other cultures, and traditions and make so many friends on every corner of the globe makes me feel happy. It’s about finding those things you never knew you were looking for. The sky is not the limit in this job, it’s just the view!

What would you advise other candidates?

I would advise them to definitely go for the interviews as many times as they feel like if this is what they really want to do. Also to take a course as the one I took with Nicoleta Gherman because it will help them understand what this job really means and to succeed at any airline company they want. Also to believe in them and their strengths because you don’t know how far you can fly until you spread your wings! And the most important thing: always SMILE no matter what!!!