Most of my clients are not in the least bit concerned about job interviews. While a few clients are nervous or apprehensive, or do understand that they are weak at job interviews; most clients don’t feel like they need to invest in job interview coaching.
Yet, if you talk to recruiters, or those within human resources, most people don’t present that well in interview (including executives). The reality is most candidates don’t specifically focus on the exact needs of the employer, fail to adequately research and prepare (and no, scanning the website of a company is not research), and don’t adequately sell what they offer.
From my perspective, I think the primary reason why most job candidates don’t perform as well as they could, is because they misunderstand the true purpose of a job interview. While there is a mutual understanding that a job interview is about finding the right skills match, most candidates fail to understand that the other primary purpose of the interview is about making the right connection, whether entry level or executive.
You see while experience, education, and professional skills are all important, employers already have a good understanding of your background via your resume. At interview, the key questions on an employers mind are going to be:
- Will you mesh with current staff?
- Will you excel in the culture (for example, the culture might be stressful, unstructured, rigid, new-age, or a technology savvy work culture)?
- Do you actually want the job and are enthusiastic about the opportunity being offered (or are you indifferent and just after a pay check)?
- Do you meet the exact needs of the company?
- Have you got the right interpersonal and communication skills, enabling you to work effectively with others?
If employers were only after a particular skills set, then they could easily just read a bunch of resumes and hire someone without spending hours interviewing potential employees.
But they are not just after a particular skills set, they are after someone with whom they can make a connection with as well as someone that they are confident will do the job effectively. Faced with a choice, most employers will choose a less qualified candidate, over a more qualified candidate, if the connection is ‘spot on’.
So are you really making a connection at interview, or simply surviving a list of interview questions?
Do you always come across as genuinely enthusiastic about the opportunity?
Did you leave an interview knowing the exact needs of the company?
After finding out about the employers exact needs (not assumed needs), did you successfully address these needs?
If you answered no, to one of more of these questions, then no, you are not a wiz at job interviews.