What do Hiring Managers really look for in an interview? Are they just looking for skills and experience, or is there something more?
There is no mistaking that you must be qualified for a position to be considered. However, is that the only thing that’s important? What about those non tangible traits? Do you think it’s important for the interviewer to think that you should be a good fit for the business? You bet they do. And this is true for any industry, whether it be for the Federal Government, private industry, police, or for your match interview. The successful candidate must be the “right fit”.
Demonstrating “Right Fit” at the Interview
During an interview, it’s very important that the interviewer have an overall good feeling about you. You want to leave them with the impression that you are likeable and will make a good addition to their organization. You need to demonstrate that you are the “right fit”
The only way to do that is for you to know what’s important to them. You need to ensure that those traits, or competencies, come across loud and clear in an interview.
- Are they looking for someone who can work independently?
- Will you be working in a team environment, where a strong team player is more important?
- Do they want someone who is innovative?
If you’ve done your homework, you will be able to focus on those areas that are important. However, how many other applicants have done their homework? How will you be remembered?
What to focus on
- At the end of the day, people want to work with people they like. How do you demonstrate that? You need to be able to discuss your effective interpersonal skills.
Demonstrate Interest in the Job
- But make sure you know what the job really is before you say how much you want it. If you don’t know what is involved with the job, i.e. required travel, hours of work, primary responsibilities, etc., how do you know you really want it?
Know the Required Competencies
- Know what the competencies are, and be prepared to speak to them. If you know what traits they require, i.e. good judgment, then you can prepare your stories.
Have a Positive Attitude
- The last thing the interviewer wants to hear are negative comments, whether it be about former co-workers or bosses, or about life in general. Positive is key.
- You must stand out from the other candidates. The reality is, if interviewers are interviewing a lot of people, they can’t possibly remember everything about each person. If there is something unique about you and what you bring to the table, then they will remember it. So tap into that “something special” that will help you stand out.
Ask Good Questions
- Make sure they are meaningful to the job for which you are interviewing, and not something for which you should already know the answer. This is usually your last chance at the interview to make a lasting impression, and there’s nothing like a good closing question to leave a good impression. Make it about them, not about you.
Interviews can be stressful and intimidating, and as I have said in previous posts, the best way you can approach this is by being prepared. If you need help getting ready, reach out to someone who is an experienced interviewer or interviewee, or engage the services of a Certified Professional Career Coach to help you get ready.
Do you know someone who is faced with this challenge? Feel free to share this post by using the share links at the top of this page. Also, if you’d like more interview tips, feel free to check out the interview resource page.