By Hannah Morgan
What can you do to stand out during the interview process? First, you want to stand out for the right reasons. Consider the results of a CareerBuilder and Harris Interactive survey from 2013, involving more than 2,000 hiring managers and HR professionals who were asked which factors would make them more likely to favor one candidate over another. Twenty-seven percent of respondents would favor the candidate with the better sense of humor, 26 percent would consider the candidate who is involved in his or her community, 22 percent would favor the better-dressed candidate and 21 percent would like the candidate with whom they had more in common.
Here are some ways to be a standout candidate.
Use mutual professional and personal interests. Instead of testing new jokes out on your interviewer, look to build rapport by asking questions about his or her professional interests. Also, watch the body language of your interviewer to gauge level of interest in your responses, especially to questions about community activities and professional interests, like conferences, books, publications or professional associations. If the conversation and body language is positive, you should be sure to reference that topic in your follow-up with him or her.
Follow up is in your court. Should you follow up again after you send your thank you? Yes, you want to stay in front of the hiring decision-makers as they interview and consider more candidates. The hiring process will take longer than either of you expect. About two weeks after you send your thank you, plan on touching base with the recruiter again. Liz Ryan, CEO and founder of the publishing firm, think tank and coaching and consulting business Human Workplace, wrote a Forbes article on writing a post thank you follow-up, where she recommends you ask a friend to debrief the interview with you. The logic is that in recounting blow by blow with someone else you may reveal things you missed. “You’ll be amazed how your friend, simply by virtue of not being you, can call your attention to issues that deserve your attention,” Ryan writes. “They could be odd or concerning things that happened at the interview.” Use these insights when you write your next email to the interviewer.
Read the full USNews article for more tips and strategies
by Jörgen Sundberg
There is an awful lot of chitchat, jibber jabber and small talk going on in interviews. When you take a closer look at the exchanges, you can see that there are only a few questions the interviewer is really bothered about. The rest are simply there to create rapport and filling the gaps.
The reason you will always struggle to prepare answers to every single question you are asked in an interview is that the interviewer themselves didn’t prepare them. They don’t really care too much about all the answers you give either. What we do know is that an interviewer has one major objective to fulfill and that is to get the answers to the five basic questions. Based on the answers, he or she will then compare the answers to that of any other interviewer’s and they will then rule you in or out. Here is the list:
1) What brings you to this interview?
This is where the interviewer wants to see how well you have researched this position, how committed you really are to the company and why you are looking for a new job in the first place. Make sure you read up on the job and can say exactly how it fits to your skills. Do your homework on the company so that you can explain why you are on their interview couch and not the competitor’s. Finally, you will inevitably have to explain what brought you to a job interview, prepare to outline your reason for changing jobs.
2) What value will you add to our company?
The interviewer is hoping you might be the solution to their problems, so let’s tune in to WIIFM and crank up the volume. List your main skills and how these will be directly applicable if you get the job. Back your claims up with achievements from your previous jobs, preferably quantified ($x increase in sales, 30% savings on paper clips). Forget what you want to get out of the job you are interviewing for, this is all about what they will get from you.
See all 5 and the complete UnderCoverRecruiter article
Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
Want to ace your next job interview? It’s not just about doing the right things. What you don’t do can be just as crucial to getting hired.
It’s not only bad manners, but it indicates that you’re a bad listener — not something most HR people put high on their list of qualities to look for in a potential hire.
4. Be late.
It should go without saying, but just in case: be on time. In fact, if you can, get to the area a little early and wait in a nearby coffee shop, etc. Being late makes you look disorganized or, worse, as if you value your time, but not the interviewer’s.
6. Fail to ask questions.
“You can count on the fact that almost every interview will end the same way: with your interviewer asking you, ‘What questions do you have for me?'” writes Robin Madell at US News’ On Careers blog. “A big ball-drop is thinking you’ll just wing this opportunity rather than preparing for it in advance.”
Come prepared with a few thoughtful questions and think of points that you’d like clarified that come up during the interview.
Read all 7 mistakes and the complete Payscale article
Personal Branding Blog
Want to know what 80 percent of employers do before they invite you for an interview?
They Google you.
If this surprises you, then this article is exactly what you need to read. In today’s workforce, employers value transparency when recruiting and hiring candidates, so you need to make sure your online presence is clean and honest.
When employers search for you on Google, they don’t do it to intentionally find negative things about you. They simply want to get to know their applicants so they can better select candidates for an interview. This is why you need to take into consideration the top four things employers look for when they Google candidates:
1. A professional headshot
Whenever possible, employers want to know what their applicants look like. Make sure you have a professional photo of you on your online networks and website so employers can see you. This doesn’t have to be a photo taken by a professional, but it should be a photo of you in professional attire with good lighting.
3. The size of your digital footprint
Employers also want to know how you present yourself and interact with others online. Research shows 96 percent of recruiters use LinkedIn to search for candidates. This should be an indicator that you should have a complete LinkedIn profile in addition to the other social networks you use. If you don’t have yourself connected to these online profiles, then you could be missed by employers when they search for job seekers in your field.
Professional resume writers agree there are many right ways to write a resume. Get 10 professional resume writers working for the same resume client, and they could probably create 10 different resumes based on style and look. However, all of the resumes could still be very good.
After 12 years of owning a resume writing business, I have seen these resume writing tips immediately transform a resume. Remember – Your resume has 20-30 seconds to make an impression and spending 30 minutes with this list could help!
2. Proofread resumes for grammar, spelling and factual errors by reading from the end in reverse order
3. Use consistent font size including bullet sizes on your resume
14. Top 30-40% of the resume gets the most attention; Make it grab the reader’s attenton.
36. Get others to proof read your resume – be open to criticism
See all 50 tips and the complete article