Wednesday, September 25, 2013

5 Defining Moments of Every Job Interview

In every job interview, there are five “make-it-or-break-it” moments that send the candidate onto the next round of interviews, possibly even a job offer, or to the discard pile.

Of course, there are highly important aspects before (research) and after (effective follow up) the interview. For the purpose of this discussion, however, we’ll focus exclusively on winning your initial interview with each employer.

Without further delay, here are the five defining moments of every job interview…

3. The Value Proposition
Now that you’ve moved the recruiter to conversational mode, it’s time to rise above most of your competition. How? By clearly working your unique value proposition into the conversation!

Your value proposition is what makes you the most hirable candidate for the position. Maybe it is your experience, passion, your entrepreneurial outlook, knowledge of the competition or ability to lead teams. More than likely, it’s a combination of all of the above, and more. Articulating why you are the right person for the job makes the recruiter’s decision – and job – that much easier while leaving no doubt you have the confidence to step right into the role.

4. The Questions
At some point, the recruiter is going to ask: “Do you have any questions of me?” – and you better be ready.

Saying “no” implies you aren’t interested. Saying “Not at this time, we covered everything” shows you haven’t done your homework. Asking questions easily found online demonstrates a lack of passion and creativity. Inquiring about the exact compensation and benefits may indicate you are worried mostly about you.

At this critical point in the interview, you should ask three types of questions, in no particular order:
  1. A question about the recruiter’s personal experience with the company (“What do you enjoy about working for this company and our industry?”)
  2. A question specific to the job or project (“In my first 60 days in this role, how would we measure my success as a (insert job title)? How can I make the most impact?”
  3.  A question about the company and its future (“I see your competition, ABC Company, has rolled out a new product line; short-term, how will we contend with their launch?)

Please note the use of “us” and “we” in the questions – and the lack of “I” and “me”.

Moments 1,2,5, and the complete article

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