Interviewing is really an art as much as it is a science. Being successful depends on a combination of preparation, know-how and the ability to connect with the audience. Something most job seekers don’t consider – your interviewer HOPES you are the best candidate for the job. Think about it – who wants to interview and interview and never find a great fit for the job?
Some ideas to help turn your interviewer into a FAN!
1. Convince yourself that the interviewer really WANTS to hire you.
The fact is, it is tough to hire a quality employee. I can say from experience that your interviewer hopes that you WOW him or her with your answers and give fabulous reasons to hire you.Ã‚Â In essence, the interviewer is rooting for you!
2. Know what to say.Ã‚Â
Prepare in advance.Ã‚Â A lot.Ã‚Â No, you don’t have to memorize answers to 100 interview questions, but be sure that you spend time thinking and practicing what you will say in response to topics that will come up:
- Think of your key points (as they relate to how you fit into the job).Ã‚Â These points are your message.Ã‚Â They answer the question:Ã‚Â Why should we hire you?
- Create several stories that illustrate your points and describe how you are able to fill the organization’s needs.Ã‚Â Stories should demonstrate successes, a time you overcame obstacles and examples of how you interact with colleagues and employers. Use the STAR technique to describe these situations.
- Incorporate the fact that you’ve conducted research on the organization, their goals, values, accomplishments and needs in your answers.Ã‚Â Your interviewer will be happy to know that you spent some time on the organization’s website or reading up on them.Ã‚Â It’s flattering to know that you’re interested enough in the job to prepare.Ã‚Â Interviewers love prepared candidates.
3. Listen carefully and answer the question.Ã‚Â
You won’t believe how many candidates reply to a direct question without actually answering it.Ã‚Â It can be a little painful for the interviewer.Ã‚Â Ask for clarification if necessary, even think for a few seconds before replying.Ã‚Â (Not too many seconds, though.)Ã‚Â If you don’t answer the question, you’ll lose your fan.
4. Don’t keep talking and talking (and talking)…
There is no quicker way to lose your audience than by droning on and on before you get to the point.Ã‚Â If it doesn’t seem that you’re getting to the point, you will lose your audience quickly.Ã‚Â Even if you do (eventually) answer the question, your interviewer will be busy making mental notes about what to pick up for dinner by the time you get to the point.Ã‚Â Be succinct.Ã‚Â Your interviewer will love it!
5. Follow Up
Send a thank you note.Ã‚Â It matters.
If you follow these tips, you’ll increase the likelihood of keeping a fan on the other side of the interview table.Ã‚Â That fan is much more likely to become a colleague if they like you as much when you leave the room as they did when they invited you to interview!Ã‚Â It’s in your hands – interview to seal the deal and GET THE JOB!
Stay tuned for some additional tips from Keith Ferrazzi!
photo by woodlywonderworks