When you connect the dots, the similarities are astonishing
Even if you never worked in sales, if you’ve been around the business world long enough you’ll recognize an effective sales pitch when you see one. Many job search experts claim that looking for a job is like the sales process where the job seeker is the product and the employer is the customer.
It’s been long assumed that an effective salesperson has a good “gift of gab.” That is to say, if you’re good at sales you can talk anyone into anything. Nothing could be further from the truth.
In reality, the opposite is true. Those who excel at sales are good listeners. If you listen well enough and closely enough, prospective buyers will confess what exactly they need. They will laid bare their problems which the good-listening salesperson effectively will pick up on and offer precisely the solution that the customer needs to solve the problem. Viola! A sale.
As an older worker who is looking for a job, you have a lot to offer in terms of experience, expertise, solid work ethics, etc. Unfortunately, that’s not necessarily what the employer claims to be looking for.
However, if you take a cue from the sales pro and listen, the prospective employer will tell you exactly what they’re looking for. It’s then up to you to draw upon your vast experience and demonstrate how what you’ve done in the past, what you’ve mastered in previous jobs can provide the solution that hiring managers need to solve whatever problem they may have.
Are they looking just for a manager, or are they looking for someone who can eliminate turnover? Are they looking for someone with a distribution background, or are they looking for someone who can improve delivery times and eliminate late shipments? If you’re listening, you’ll know.
And that’s where you’re selling yourself. When you can paint yourself as the solution to their problems, that’s when you nail the interview and land the job.