Four Ways to Master Your Next Job Interview

September 28, 2016
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If one of your goals for this year was to land a new job and you haven’t yet, the clock is ticking.  The consensus among top recruiters is that hiring peaks when most people are in the office.  With summer vacations behind and the hustle and bustle of holidays ahead, late September and the month of October are strong hiring periods. 

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Once you land the interview, here are four tips to follow in order to increase your odds of securing an offer.

Don’t throw anyone under the bus.  Perhaps you and your current boss bump heads or there is someone on your team who you rubs you the wrong way.  A job interview is the last place to share these negative sentiments.  When you are asked why you want to leave your current employer—or have already left, focus on why you want to grow and where you want to go.  Dale Carnegie’s first Human Relations principle, ‘Don’t criticize, condemn or complain,’ reinforces that while it’s easy to complain about a situation, it takes a strong self-starter to explore and implement solutions. Demonstrate your ‘can-do’ attitude by focusing on how your work experience makes you an ideal fit for the job opportunity.

Listen up!  Dale Carnegie’s 7th principle is, ‘Be a good listener.  Encourage others to talk about themselves.’  A job interview is like a date—you and your potential employer learn about each other.  Avoid launching into a soliloquy about your stellar education and roster of amazing roles.  Instead, first, actively listen to the interviewer’s questions.  Next, share aspects about your professional experience that correlate to the specific question. Responding in this fashion demonstrates that you are a good listener and have respect for others. 

Smile.  Body language speaks volumes.  In fact, a person’s voice inflection, facial expressions and body language can make up over 90% of their message.  Use Dale Carnegie’s 5th principle, ‘Smile,’ to your advantage during the interview.  Not smiling can be interpreted in many detrimental ways.  For example, a recruiter may assume you are not interested in or enthusiastic about the job opportunity.  Worse yet, the perception may be that you are complacent, over-confident, self-absorbed or other negative characteristics.  Smiling when appropriate sends the message that you are excited and engaged—which hiring managers value.

Show some love.  Dale Carnegie’s 2nd principle, ‘Give honest, sincere appreciation,’ reminds us to give thanks in every situation.  A popular interview question, “What do you like most and least about your current role, and why?” is ideal to show your sincere appreciation.  For example, you may share that you appreciate the autonomy your current boss has given you because it enabled you to uncover more efficient and effective approaches to outdated processes.  Remember, each question the interviewer poses is an opportunity for you to shine, smile and show your gratitude for all of the work experiences that have paved away for this next potential role. 

 

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