Interested in turning job interviews into job offers?
Let me share with you some tips on how to build personal chemistry during a job interview.
First of all, no two job interviews are the same, so you can’t plan exactly how the interview will go, but it’s important to have a strategy. It is imperative that you face the interview as a selling meeting; meaning building personal chemistry and establishing an open dialogue for free information exchange. Success is not necessarily what you say, but how you say it.
Research the Company
If you do your homework before the interview you have a strong advantage over the others; many candidates will fail to do this. Think about it this way, aren’t you impressed when someone is interested in you and knows some of the highlights in your career? It surprises you, right?
Arranging Job Interviews Via Phone
You will find that most job interviews are arranged by a phone conversation, so start to build chemistry right there. Ensure your tone reflects that you are confident, enthusiastic, and friendly; be sure to start to gather any information you can. Try to get a job description, organizational structure, company literature, just ask and see what happens. Stir up a short conversation by asking a couple of relevant questions about the position, this shows interest.
The Receptionist is Important
Don’t kid yourself, this person’s opinion is important and does influence the hiring decision. I actually have a lot of first hand experience with this—when I was interviewing candidates, the secretary/receptionist would always let me know if the interviewer was rude, non-attentive, enthusiastic, etc. If you go out of your way to be polite, kind, or friendly, the receptionist will more than likely go out of their way to be helpful to you—but don’t overdo it. The moral of the story is, pay attention to the receptionist, they are important. Do more than make friends, try to find out more information about the company or the interviewer that will help you during the interview.
Display a Positive Attitude and the Right Image
Did you know that many interviewers make their mind up in the first few minutes as to whether they want to continue with the job interview? It’s true; so in those few minutes, you need to establish good chemistry, you should have established the necessary credentials by having a superb resume. Show a positive attitude, excellent communication skills, confidence, mannerisms, enthusiasm, interest, and cheerful outlook. A smile and a firm handshake are a given.
Make a Sincere Compliment
Make sure you use sincere comments, don’t sound phony. One hint for finding something to say, is to research the company and uncover some good things to comment on. Then find the opportunity near the beginning of the meeting to let the interviewer know that you heard of such-and-such, or that the company is a large contributor to the United Way or some other charity. You can also compliment the building, offices, people, products, services, etc., but try your best to be unique and provide some details, if appropriate.
Demonstrate Effective Communication During the Interview
Have you ever heard the saying, “it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it”? When answering questions try to use good action-oriented stories. People remember good stories, ones that use lots of action words—it keeps them interested.
Foster personal chemistry by correctly answering tough questions. For example:
“Wow, Joe, you look very impressive on paper, you should be able to solve all our problems, so, why should I hire you?” Now, if you try to answer that you may run the risk of sounding like you can solve all the company problems, when in reality this is next to impossible.
A way to answer this and build chemistry is to explain:
“Could you please share some more information with me? Maybe I can give you a more intelligent response. Yes, I do have a lot of experience and personal strengths that can contribute to the company. But, without knowing specifics and priorities, I would be speaking without thinking. So, for now I would sooner listen to the person who knows what the challenges and the opportunities are.”
Listen and Discover Their Needs
You will find that some interviewers will let their needs be known, this makes it easy for you. You just need to put your “listening ears” on and use the information you gain to your advantage. If they don’t give you the information, you may have to pry it out of them by asking job-related questions. “What would be the biggest challenge for the person in this position?” If the interviewer wasn’t that keen on you, this type of question would increase your popularity. Listen very closely and ask the right questions during the conversation, you’ll understand how the interviewer views the problem, their expectations, and if any progress has been made.
Make sure you know your personal strengths beforehand, and be prepared to discuss examples of your strengths; try to use action-packed stories. You can then easily relate your strengths to the company needs.
Don’t Forget to Follow Up
At the end of the job interview, make a positive comment about the interview and indicate your enthusiasm about the position. After this summary, ask a question to generate some feedback, such as, “Can you tell me if my qualifications, skills, and strengths match your company needs, as I believe they do?” “What is the next step to contribute my efforts and enthusiasm to your company?” Then send a follow up/thank you letter to everyone that interviewed you. It is polite, expected, and will keep you in the limelight. You will be one step ahead of your competition.
Now you have a strategy for building chemistry. If you would like to learn more about conducting a successful job search, strengthening your interview techniques and your confidence, etc.—give me a call and make an appointment. Many clients who have gone through this process state, it’s worth every penny.