Interviewing Skills – more than answering questions

Abby Donnelly

I attended a meeting at the Jewish Family Services Employment Workshop, hosted by Betsy Gamburg.

The topic was Interviewing, the Good, the Bad & the Ugly, presented by Abby Donnelly founder of The Leadership & Legacy Group.

Here are some of the points I captured during Abby’s conversation with the group.

The Many Purposes of an interview include:
– To sell yourself
– To get an invitation for a job offer
– To networking for opportunities
– To determine if the company is a good fit for you
– To share how you can have a positive impact on the business.

A Great interview occurs when the interviewer(s) are in awe about what you could do for their business or organization.
A Good interview occurs when you show that you are interested while being interesting.
A Bad or Ugly interview is one where you are not interesting or where you clearly do not show your interest in the business and interviewers.

When answering the interviewer(s) questions you must always answer in an engaging and interesting way.

When telling your story of successes and accomplishments, be interesting and succinct. Don’t consume too much time or drift off into irrelevant conversations.

If you do not appear interested in the business or interviewer(s), they could be less interested in you and may not think you are a good candidate.

Your questions must evoke even more interest from the interviewer.

The types of questions to ask should be business and/or strategic focus questions, relevant to the position. I.E., it may not be appropriate to ask about high level business strategy if you are applying for a bank teller question. However, asking about business growth and branch goals could be very useful to show that you are interested in the business.

Have confidence in who you are, what you can do and how you present yourself to the interviewer. Confidence is an important candidate attribute.

When asking your network for help in career transition, be clear about what you want to do, or paint a broad picture of career ideas that you may be interested in. Not being clear or focused on your career goals limits your network’s ability to help you.

During the interview you should look for fit. Fit will include lots of business attributes including:
– Culture
– Work style (Team or individual)
– Operations focused or Sales Focused
– Flexibility
– Yes – the overall compensation
– etc, etc.

The worst job for anyone is a job where you failed to look for the fit and then discover there is a big gap in the fit.

You can’t control an interviewer, you can however control how you may influence them with your words, story, body language and how you engage with them.

How do you respectfully get an over talkative interviewer to hear more about who you are? Start asking them questions relevant to the job.

Generally speaking, the person asking the questions is most in control of the interview.

People will think you are amazing if you listen well and ask good questions.

When answering challenging questions, recognize the past, look towards the future and answer in the positive.

How to answer the question “Why has it taken you so long to find a new job?” – “I am fortunate that I have been able to take time looking for the right job, where I can bring real value and be successful at what I do for the business I decide to work for.”

Use visualization and practice to get yourself prepared for your interview.

Visualization is a powerful way to do your absolute best at an interview.

The group benefited from the conversation about Interviewing.

What great tips do you have to share about interviewing?

Author: NCWiseman

I am a Networking Strategist and LinkedIn coach and Trainer. I live by my personal edict, "Networking is finding, developing and nurturing relationships that mutually move people forward thru life." I want to help people become better Networkers and better LinkedIn users focused on their business and career goals.