A colleague of mine recently asked me a few questions about my thoughts on interviewing and some ‘tips’ that may help candidates in their job search. There were four questions that were asked of me and I thought I would share the four statements I had about interviewing in today’s world. The information below I think really is just scratching the surface on interviewing and job searching but here is what I said back to my colleague.
I think before any candidate gets excited about an interview they really should work out what it is they are looking for in their next role. If you don’t have an end goal in mind and go where the wind takes you how will you know when you have found the right role/company for you?
Every candidate is unique. Candidates may share similar experiences or work histories but often having the right work ethic and motivation is one of the common traits that I tend to look for in every candidate. A candidate who is not afraid to work hard and wants to do the work will often be more successful than a person who has all the required skills but has a sense of entitlement or does not have the motivation to embrace the role. I would look for someone who is energized and excited about an opportunity as I think that enthusiasm will help drive someone to succeed in their role.
Information is available with a bit of research: There are numerous companies in the world of all shapes, sizes and forms. As a Recruiter I am more interested in what research a person does about the role they are being considered for more so than their knowledge of a certain company that anyone can get in the news. In today’s day and age I would expect that the person would have at least researched the Recruiter they are talking to and also should have researched the Interviewer they are going to meet. Candidates really should look at sites like Glassdoor to get employee reviews and information on what the work culture at an organization may be like. This opens up the opportunity to ask some great questions during the interview to validate what you independently researched about the company and individual you are interviewing with.
Perception and expectations can be different: I think candidates and Recruiters can sometimes go into an interview with different perceptions of what the other person is looking for more so as opposed to what they think is or is not important. Recruiters and Hiring Managers are looking for people to join their company that can add value to a role and help them achieve great results. There are still a lot of stereotypes about interviewing that exist that are being broken down. The best interviews tend to be the ones where the interview is more of a discussion than a question/answer type of situation. Candidates may over emphasize developing a good rapport with their interviewer. While this is important a candidate cannot sacrifice other important elements of an interview such as being professional or being able to clearly communicate your successes and results in a clear, crisp manner. There is a balance between developing a good relationship with the interviewer and showing your A game when it comes to business capability.
Two candidates but only one job, who gets the role: Two candidates can have similar work experience but have very different motivations for considering a new opportunity. A person who has the right work ethic and motivation to do a role I think really sets them up to succeed. Candidates look for new opportunities for a variety of reasons. Some people want more money, want to climb the corporate ladder, want to relocate, want more responsibility, etc…. the list is long. A good Recruiter knows how to qualify what it is a candidate is looking for in their next opportunity and see how that fits into the role they are being hired for. We can always teach people about technical or business skills, the candidates that embrace the opportunity are the ones who I think will grab the role and run with it.