Holding Back

You don’t have to bare your soul in a job interview, unless…

As you prepare for a job interview, doing your homework is a must. It should go without saying that a significant part of that homework is researching the employer with whom you’re going to interview – the company, the market, the competition, the position (and salary history, if available) and the person(s) with whom you will be interviewing.

Granted that’s the lion share of the work. But it doesn’t stop there.

You may not think so, but reviewing your talking points is just as important for a successful interview.

Do you know the points you want to make and what to emphasize? Have you rehearsed your “stories”? These are those areas of your background where you excelled, succeeded, or made a significant contribution. All that should be recounted beforehand to ensure nothing is glossed over or omitted.

We’re certain that you have many good stories to tell. However, just like your resume, how much is too much? Just like your resume, if you’re unsure about talking about something during an interview, ask yourself if it passes the “so what” test.

If you mention something, will the interviewer be impressed or simply shrug and say, “so what”?

That’s really difficult to know ahead of time. A cautioned approach would be to make it relevant but to not tell everything right off the bat. If the interviewer is sufficiently intrigued, if they want to know more, they’ll ask. And if they do, then you can do a history dump and tell them chapter and verse of your contributions.

Sometimes, less is more.

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