Job hunting is a stressful business. Financially your well being is at stake, even to the point of losing your house and car if you can not find a job soon. And all that stress is the pinnacle of the interview.
Here, sit face to face with your potential employer, he will decide in half an hour (or less) if you will be earning a nice salary or continue to flail around looking for another chance.
To prepare for this performance, too many job seekers take a course and learn the 150 most commonly asked interview questions. I think this is a waste of time. Instead, examine the company and ask. Know what they are looking for. Get into their heads. Your job interview is to convince the hiring manager that
1. You can make more money for the company than what they will pay you.
2. You can make more money for the company than the other candidates.
Never lose sight of this fact. You are hired to make money for the company. Too many job hunters think they’re hired to be a graphic designer or accountant. They feel they have to prove how good they are in their field. They emphasize their abilities in a narrow niche, talk jargon to show a deep mastery of a narrow skill.
Instead, the hiring manager is appreciated for other abilities. You see, the hirer is sure of your ability in your field, or you would never get an interview. Do not bar him or her to death with the intricacies of programming or awards you received for “Best White Paper on impact FAR 121.618 of Airline Crew plans.”
To a person or group who is interviewing you, speak to their needs, not yours. Chances are, the people interviewing you have profit and loss of warranty. This means that their bonuses are directly how much profit their unit or department turns in this quarter.
They are looking for a candidate to speak three powerful words that, if true, could mean promotions, accolades, and bigger bonuses for everyone. These three words are:
“I can sell.”
managers today realize that everyone in the organization must be able to sell upgrades and new products to its customers. Anyone coming in contact with customers or potential customers will be able to move them in the direction of the sales funnel. While talking to the recruiter just the other day, she told me that the hottest demand from their customers for technical people who can sell.
Now that you’ve said the statement, you must prove it by selling himself to interviewers. Practice your pitch before the interview. Get a coach. They can help. If you do not have any sales experience, pick up some books on sale. Study and practice. It is not difficult.
Go out and sell something. Get some exercise. One of the best exercises hires volunteers and / or donations to your charity. You have been making sales since you were a kid. Remember when you convinced your father to buy you that new bike? Or just last week when you sold your spouse on the idea of going to the library instead of the movie? You have the ability, you just need to restore the internal fire and crank up your confidence.
When you say these magic words in the interview, do not be surprised when you see the hiring manager or interview board sit up and really pay attention. You see, you have just spoken to their needs and show you to be knowledgeable about more than just a niche.
Plus, you have jumped ahead of other candidates by proving your ability to not only work in your technical angle, but to bring in revenue to the company. The hirers will see you as so much more desirable and promotable.
So, be ready to say these three words with conviction, and use the story show your ability. The hiring manager will love it.
d. Alan Johnson