Guest Author - Dianne Walker
You have interviewed so many times but did not get the job offer. You think you provided the perfect answers; you dressed impeccably but still did not get the job. What happened? Despite the fact that hiring managers may take notes during the interview, most tend to forget candidates once they walk out of the interview room. What are they looking for and what can you do to be remembered?
Remember, the interview is not just about your knowledge and skills. There will be many candidates with equal (if not better) skills. The interview is about relationship building. You need to develop a rapport between yourself and the employer right from the start.
Don’t be negative – Interviewers will remember standout words and phrases. If negativity is used every time you refer to a former boss, colleague or company –they will remember the phrases. “They really didn’t know what they were doing.” “They were promoted over me, but I had to teach them everything.” Even if you have an explanation for why you feel the way you do, only the negative response will be remembered.
Be likable – Nobody wants to work with a robot. Be friendly and smile. Keep the nervous giggles, however, under control. You spend a lot of hours in the workplace, not only do hiring managers want you to be skilled, but they want to get along with you and for you to get along with others in the work place.
Be engaging, but not over the top. Wild hand and arm gestures are distracting. Over the top behavior often comes across as fake. Interviewers are looking for candidates to be engaging but not fake. Practice voice and body control during the interview.
It’s fine to express the desire to get the job. Don’t make the reason about bills, boredom or long periods of unemployment. The reason should revolve around the skills you bring to the environment. Show the hiring manager that hiring you would be a good return on investment. You don’t want to be known as the candidate that begged for the job.
Tell the hiring manager about yourself, but keep it professional. The interview chair is not therapy couch. A recent divorce or life altering event is important, but if you can’t focus on business during the interview, what guarantee does the hiring manager have that you will not turn the office into drama central. Do not share extreme personal details.
Bottom line, what do interviewers want? Skills, knowledge, rapport and professionalism.