POSTED BY: Don Oehlert
Managing Partner, eCareerCoaching.com
“Practical advice on your next career move.”
you did all the work
Your resume and networking work all came to a good conclusion, and you’ve landed an interview.
Nervous? I imagine some, if not most of you are, at least to some extent. You really wouldn’t be human if you weren’t a tad bit nervous.
As you (may) know by now, our company believes that looking for a job is a job in and of itself. And when you’re in job search, you’re in sales. Period. Even if you don’t like salespeople.
By the way, I’m not talking about the manipulative, crass, overly-friendly, slimy person you see in the movies and on TV. I’m talking about professional salespeople that are very interested in learning the problems and issues that face the company. They hope to find an overlap between those problems and how they can help.
That’s all. There’s no need to be worried that you’re going to turn into one of those caricatures of salespeople. We don’t advocate that – not at all.
Well what should i do?
Here’s a list of the tips to keep in mind for when you’re interviewing:
- Know it’s just a conversation between two people. You have as much power as does the person across the desk from you – especially if you are extremely well-prepared for this
- Listen carefully – no – actively listen to everything that the interviewer says. In most cases, they will spell out for you what their biggest problems are in this department. When they do, you can help them see how you are uniquely qualified to solve those problems
- Bring your questions on paper. Have your research notes categorized and clearly findable for your review during the conversation
- Understand that you are there to tell compelling stories that show how you can solve the problems they are experiencing. Hopefully you’re good enough at math in your head, so that you can even roughly scale the size of the problem for that organization. When you derive that number, you can show them how a salary of $XXX,XXX is highly reasonable (at the appropriate time in the negotiation period, that is)
- In our eBook, and during our coaching, we preach again and again that people should practice their stories and answers. We advocate that you should practice your answers in front of a mirror. You should record yourself answering the standard set of questions that you know will be asked. Practice the way you will ask your questions.
You know very well that Academy Award winners have many practice sessions before they go in front of the camera. They also get several takes to get it right. You won’t get several takes – you only get one. That means that you’ll have to be more prepared than the next guy. We know that a certain percentage of candidates will “wing it” when it comes to interview time. That’s great! (for you)
OK, there’s a bonus point to be made in this post of tips for interviewing.
- After the interview, send a hand-written thank you note. Do something unique. The average count of emails a person receives during an average day at the office is 90. Where will your email fall? Into SPAM maybe?
You may never know where it ends up. And that’s bad.
To get to know yourself better from a personal standpoint, please drop us an email for your free copy of our “Finding Your True North” instrument. In it are 36 questions that will help you understand what makes you tick, so that you can better prepare for a job search, or decide whether you should go for that promotion.
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