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Ears to the Ground

Listening may be a lost art but it’s crucial in a job search

If you’re like most people, you spent the formative years of life being told to listen. Listen to your parents. Listen to your teachers. Listen to your elders. Listen to your big brother or sister. Listen. Listen. Listen.

Even now medical professionals are telling us to listen to our bodies to see what maladies they’re announcing.

And, of course, today, listening is a crucial part of your job search. You’ll never get anywhere without listening to your friends, colleagues, vendors, former co-workers, etc. Even other people who are unemployed along with you, they all have something to say.

Listening to your job search

The standard advice to someone going into a job interview is that this is your chance to shine, to sell yourself. And how do most people think you have to sell yourself? By being a good talker.

After all, aren’t all good sales people good talkers. “Why he can talk anyone into buying anything.”

It’s a common misperception that all sales people are good talkers. In fact, if you talk to sales professionals – especially sales trainers – they will tell you that the really successful sales people are first and foremost, good listeners.

How else will you know what the customer is looking for, or is willing to buy?

Apply that same advice to your job search. Listen during your interviews. The person interviewing you will tell you what they’re looking for, why kind of a candidate they will hire. And, if you’re listening, you’ll hear it and be able to positively respond.


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