A job interview can be a very daunting task for anyone. For most people, their performance at job interviews causes them to get weeded out of a position instead of getting planted in their idea companies.
Career counselors teach candidates to learn information about the company of your potential employer before the interview. But what does that actually mean? Do you study the company’s history? Do you learn the products they offer? Do you find out the company’s mission? Although doing all of those things are important, this knowledge alone will not impress your employer.
Then what’s the point of learning about your potential employer? Your job as the candidate is to identify a company’s current business needs and provide solutions to address those needs. This means asking the right questions throughout the interview to show the interviewer not only that you’re interested in the position, but also in providing solutions for the company.
When you’re at the job interview, you’re selling yourself. You’re explaining to the employer the benefits of having you on the team. As you answer the interviewers’ questions, you must emphasize your accomplishments at previous companies. Don’t just state your job duties; tell what contributions you made at previous companies. Employers are looking for people who will be productive and find solutions to their current and future problems. Don’t believe that your skills and credentials alone are enough to secure any position. Anyone can be trained to learn your skills, but not everyone can be productive and find the solutions.
Whenever a company interviews a candidate, they’re looking to answer one important question: “How will the candidate make money for the company?” As the job candidate, this is the question you must answer. Although most interviewers won’t ask this question directly, you must phrase your answers to the questions in a way that helps the interview answer this important question. Companies view employees as an investment, which means you, as an employee, must provide an adequate return on investment in order to remain with the company. It’s your job to show the employer that it will make more money with you on the team than your competition.
As you prepare for your next interview, remember to shift your focus to meeting the needs of your next employer. Ask your employer what problems they’re trying to solve in the present and the future (yes, you should be asking questions during the interview). Ask them as early in the interview as possible. Start with just a few questions to gauge how comfortable the interview team will disclose this information. If you get too much resistance, then just focus on emphasizing your accomplishments and your contributions. Remember, you are qualified to meet their needs; otherwise, you wouldn’t be sitting in the interview. Good luck and happy interviewing.