Be prepared! Sounds simple, doesn’t it? After all, the Boy Scouts have been teaching this idea to kids for over 100 years.
So why in the world would most job seekers show up for an interview unprepared? You see it all the time—they dash in from the parking lot with no particular plan on how to engage their potential employer. Or they relentlessly work the phones only to discover that they’ve offered nothing more than hollow chitchat.
So why IS it that job seekers fail to prepare?
THIS WEEK’s Session, Thursday, August 29… Closing The Deal II: Discussion and PRACTICE of good interviewing tactics, including POST-Offer negotiation
Because it is easier to talk about you, your company and your products than it is to prepare to have a conversation about THEM!
Here’s the big question: what are you doing to prepare that if your next employer knew you were doing it, they would be more inclined to have an open and honest dialogue with you? The next time you meet with a prospect or client, open the conversation with this simple phrase:
“In preparing for this meeting I took some time to discover a few things that would allow me to succeed in this role…” Then simply highlight the two or three critical things that you did to prepare and watch what happens to the atmosphere of the call. You will blow away the last interviewee (your competition) who opened their meeting in silence, waiting to be interrogated!
The less you talk about yourself, the more you have to prepare to talk about them. In the nine-box matrix, it’s about meeting their expectations! And the more you talk about them, the more likely they will be interested in you. Back to our matrix, it’s about creating the allusive BUYING SIGNAL, and mitigating any risks about a good FIT.
Not exactly the secret formula you were hoping for. But it is an obvious formula—so obvious that most job seekers ignore it.
Here are ten keys that you can use to create your own successful interview habits:
- Learn about their business—their products/services, customers, industry trends, key initiatives, financial status, and competition.
- Discover something about the person you are meeting with. Google them, talk to their colleagues, or call others in the industry who have insights. Use a targeted organization networking approach.
- Plan questions that establish your expertise and get them to think in new ways. The more thought provoking your questions are, the more your prospective employers will respect and remember you!
- Identify the benefits of your value to this potential employer. Your value proposition needs to be clear, concise, credible and compelling!
- Prepare ideas that hold value for your ‘next employer.’ Your language needs to reflect a focus on solutions…meeting their needs!
- Communicate an outline of your meeting prior to the actual interview. Ask them to review and provide you with feedback. Getting their buy-in before you walk in the door is critical, and it demonstrates your commitment to delivering value.
- Identify the resistance that you are most likely to encounter and prepare ideas, case studies, testimonials or expert opinions to help reduce their reluctance to move forward. OVER-qualified? No INDUSTRY experience…
- Plan how you will close the interview appointment and decide what agreements you need to ask for.
- Remind yourself to be friendly and courteous to everyone that you encounter. Your potential employer is constantly deciding how much they like you, how much they trust you and how much confidence they have in you.
- BE CONFIDENT in your PRE-Offer and POST-Offer negotiation approaches. It takes time—often a long time—to build your personal brand. And it takes only a few seconds for it to be destroyed.