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Risky Business

Stand your next job interview on its head

➔ Job interviews can be grueling, stressful and mentally (and even physically) draining. No argument there.

So, how to make them less stressful? First and foremost – as we’ve stated in this space many times – preparation can’t be emphasized too much. The more you know, the more confident you’ll feel and the stronger an impression you’ll make.

There is, however, more to carrying the day.

If I were you, I would…

One simple, but excellent practice is to put yourself in the other person’s shoes. – By the way, this concept works famously above and beyond the job interview, in areas such as networking. – Think about interviewers for a minute. What are they looking for?

For one thing, they’re looking for an excellent match between what the employer needs and what you bring to the table. You can make that case by examining carefully the job description (or job posting, or wherever the position is advertised) and zeroing in on those keywords or phrases where you are the best possible match.

Sure, some interviewers have unrealistically high expectations or have the attitude where they won’t even considered someone unless they’re a perfect match. OK, let’s think about that. Is that the kind of company (or individual) where you want to work? Maybe it’s time to move on. Not all jobs – and employers – are created equal.

Keep in mind also that all interviewers are risk averse. They’re constantly asking themselves, “Why should I take a chance on you?” It’s your responsibility not to give them a reason to reject you.


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