Throughout my many years as an Interview Coach, I’ve found that the most difficult task for a job seeker is the ability to effectively sell their skills and talents. Explaining professional accomplishments in a job interview can be a daunting task. Faced with a panel of professionals who will critique your every word, interviewing can be gut-wrenching.
Know What You Have to Offer
The best advice I can provide you is to ensure that you know what you can offer to the position, as well as the company’s strategic goals and objectives. The most important thing to remember is to remain calm before going into the interview room. In many cases, the interviewer may be as nervous as the interviewee.
Within the competitive job seeking arena, it is essential that you sell your professional accomplishments, past successes, and ability to improve productivity, sales, staff performance, etc. If you are in a leadership role, it is imperative that you sell your leadership, administrative experience, quantitative achievements, along with key strengths that will enhance collaboration, and strengthen company initiatives. In addition, it is exceedingly important to touch upon your relevant academic background or volunteer experience.
Most people have a hard time showcasing what they can bring to the table. Add to that a bundle of nerves and anxiety, and you can have a melting pot for disaster. This is why preparation, research, and practicing selling your skills are so important to interview success. Prepare, practice, and conquer!
When You Get Into the Interview Room
When you go into the interview room, remain calm, cool, and collected. Introduce yourself with a smile and firm handshake, and be sure to maintain good eye contact during your conversation. Touch on specific accomplishments and stay clear of providing generic, job description-like duties. Should you be faced with a question such as “Do you have any experience with ___”, and you don’t have any experience with that duty, continue to sell yourself by offering an answer such as “No, however, I do have experience with ___”, and then turn the potentially negative mark into a positive one.
Interview questions will often be geared towards how well you think on your feet so expect the unexpected. You should already have thought through what you would do in the event that you were asked a question that would otherwise catch you off guard. Your response in such circumstances should be calm and calculated—never rush to respond to a question you’re not certain about as a wrong response could reduce your chances of getting the job.
Need additional help? Reach out to Candace to learn more!
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