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How to Play Your Strengths in a Job Interview?

The most hurting comments a person can get from a recruiter are,

“Looks great on paper. Bad interviewer”

Even when a person has all the qualifications that are required for a job, not being able to give a good job interview can kill all the charm. A candidate who is not able to answer questions in an interview leaves open questions for the recruiter, which are hard to be accepted.

So, how can a person become better at an interview, if interviewing is not one of his/her strengths?

HubSpot recruiter, Emily Macintyre says, “the truth is, no one is intrinsically doomed to fail at interviews.” She also says, “Anyone can interview well, it really just comes down to knowing your strengths well and being cognizant of your foibles. If you are self-aware, then you can adapt your approach to fit your personality.”

In simple terms, nobody needs to fit in some mold that is predetermined in order to perform well at a job interview. All you need to do is to understand and recognize your style and shape the interview in accordance to amplify the strengths you have.

Following are some tips for helping you become a better interviewee, according to your goals and personality.

For introverts

For a person who is an introvert, it can be very exhausting to meet new people, especially during a one-on-one conversation in an interview. But the good thing is that introverts are better at one-on-one conversations. The trick here is to learn to stand-out instead of shouting-out.

Think of interviews as something that is helping you learn something new. Introverts are good listeners, and this is their strength. Put this skill of listening to work, during an interview. Listen carefully, and reply accordingly. Do not add up unnecessary words because that will only make you feel nervous. A recruiter will know a lot about you by the way you answer the questions.

Do not let yourself feel rushed during an interview, especially when the recruiter is dominating the conversation. Know the important points you need to convey during the interview and then go for it. If you are unable to hit them at the start of the meeting, try leaving a mark by the end of the meeting.

For extroverts

Extroverts love such social situations. To them, every person they meet is kind of an energy shot for them.

A traditional interview format normally plays to the strengths of an extrovert, but there are still some techniques to make it better even more. Extroverts usually tend to dominate conversations, that’s what they do not need to do during an interview. Let the conversation stay a two-way conversation, instead of dominating it alone.

Also notice, if your recruiter is introverted or extroverted. If the recruiter is introverted or on the quieter side, try to reconnect in the conversation. Observe what you are saying, and notice if the words are resonating or triggering any new questions.  

Auditory learners

Some people consume information more when it is in auditory form, while others tend to learn through visuals and experiences. These learning styles play a major role in a person’s way of processing information.

If a person is an auditory learner, he/she becomes a natural fit for the traditional format of interviews, because the whole interview format relies on the idea of sharing information through a conversation. Such people can easily synthesize the information as soon as they hear it. As a result, they are also able to form conclusions quicker than normal people.

There can be some situations where the recruiter is a visual learner while the interviewer is an auditory learner, and things can get a little complicated. Although this complication wouldn’t hurt the interview still one can always do something to make it better and easy for both recruiter and interviewer. If any complex ideas need to be explained, you can simply get up and use the whiteboard. Draw the diagrams and help the recruiter understand the value of your skills.

Visual learners

For people who are visual learners, things might be a little different. Visual learners tend to represent their ideas in the form of illustrations. They have the capability to allow the recruiter to watch their thoughts and ideas, instead of just listening to them.

Here is an improvement tip, try to convey your points verbally as well as in visual form. Keep the conversation going and answer the questions visually and verbally at the same time. In this way the recruiter will be able to see the potential you carry.

During an interview, one should always remember that it is not just a one-sided opportunity, and an interview is a two-way opportunity in which both parties tend to learn something about each other. A recruiter observes the skills and potential of the interviewer, while an interviewer observes the job he/she might get after that interview. Learn how to keep your strengths balanced and also utilize them to get the best out of them.  Stay confident and prepare yourself well before going for an interview. Confidence is the key here, if a person is confident about his/her qualifications and skills, he/she is most likely to get the job.

Most of the time recruiters also keep an eye on your gestures and body language, which again tells about your confidence level. Sit straight, speak without hesitating, get the gestures in use and never forget to make eye contact with the recruiter while you talk. All these tips, strengths, and confidence when combined, create a person who stands out of the crowd and is also seen as an exceptional job candidate.

The best interview advice one can ever get is that, pretend that you have already gotten the job, and think of the recruiters as the planning meeting panel who are there to listen to your plans. Once you are able to stop thinking of it as an interview and start thinking of it as a learning opportunity to communicate and demonstrate your value to companies, you are good to go mentally to play on your strengths.

Tina Persson, PhD, Career & Leadership Coach

Global ICF Coach | Coaching and training high-performing professionals to unlock and maximize their potential for guaranteed business success

You can contact me at tina@passag2pro.com

Book a strategic discovery call at https://bit.ly/3a813JQ

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