The amount of Life and Leadership Coaching clients who are asking me about how to CRUSH IT with JOB INTERVIEWS has spiked. SO many people are looking for work. Not only the unemployed are seeking, but those who are looking to “Level Up” in their career and life to a premium job or workplace. If you are not happy where you are, don’t wait. *Go after what you really want, or someone else will.
So from my clients TOP QUESTIONS about interviews, I created:
7 tips to a SMOKIN HOT INTERVIEW.
#7 Dress for Your Total SUCCESS.
Yes- It’s still true, you absolutely need to. We have a lot of “Business Casual” dress going around these days. BUT seriously, level up! Dress one notch above anyone else interviewing. You are not hired yet- so don’t take any liberties. Be conservative, unless you are an artist, rock star, or there is an industry specific attire that is required for them to think you are cutting edge-hip. You deserve to do your homework about the company, and the actual person interviewing you if possible. Find them on Facebook and LinkedIn, as well as their company web site too. Try to go in personally to the company before the interview, to see what they are wearing, and get the vibe of the organization. Ask someone in the industry if you are new to the industry. Go to their website and see if there are any real pictures of their employees actually working or at events. Getting insider information can give you an edge. Also remember: The Psychology of the colors you wear will communicate volumes. A Banker will dress differently than an Elementary School Teacher, or a Super Model etc. *Choose intentionally.
Red= is a very strong, “power” color. It is a noticeable color that is often used on caution and warning signs. It is often associated with stop or “beware”. It’s a hot color that evokes a powerful emotion of passion, lust, sex, energy, blood and war. Wearing accessories in Red is a more conservative bet. Ex: A Red Tie, Red Shoes or handbag.
Orange= is a combination of Red and Yellow. It is also a bright and warm color. It represents fire, the sun, fun, warmth and tropical images. It is considered a fun light color that has appetizing qualities to it. Orange increases oxygen supply to the brain and stimulates mental activity. It is appreciated among young adults and teens.
Green= is the color of nature and health. It also represents growth, money, fertility and safety.
Blue= is a cool calming color that shows creativity and intelligence. It is a popular color among large corporations, hospitals and airlines. It is a color of loyalty, strength, wisdom and trust. Blue has a calming effect on the psyche.
Purple= combines the stability of blue and the energy of red. Throughout history purple has been associated with royalty, nobility and prestige. It symbolizes mystery, magic, power and luxury.
White= is often associated with being pure, clean, fresh and good. (It also shows every dirty spot, so it’s bad if Lasagna is for lunch)
Black= is often a color used to portray something evil, depressing, scary or even death in western civilization. It has negative imagery with it at times such as “black mail” “black list” “black hole” etc. Black is also a very powerful color that portrays one of class elegance and wealth. Black is best when worn as an accessory.
#6 Be ON TIME.
*which means be 15-25 minutes early, ready to interview
So many people don’t do this. 1 minute late is LATE, and so is 10 minutes or 5. Plan for the traffic accident, snowstorm, last minute phone call etc. If you plan to be early, then you can manage a time-crisis that comes up. Otherwise you may be late or rush in, looking stressed out at the last moment, and not be prepared or grounded to WOW your interviewer. Being early not only sets you apart, it allows you to get yourself mentally prepared for the interview as you wait, and impress them with your professionalism. *If you are not committed to being there early for the interview, when you should be courting them…how will you show up when they hire you? It becomes their risk.
#5 Research the Industry and Company.
You should know what and who you are applying for. What kind of business did they do last year? Did they change their logo? Who are the Executives? Are they involved with the community? Are they traded on the stock market? Who is the CEO? The Founder? What do their employees say about them? What does the BBB say about them? Google, LinkedIn, Facebook and word of mouth should tell you a lot. This is more than most of your lazy competition will do. It will prepare you to, at the right time, compliment the company to the interviewer. For example: “I did see that your ROI was up 17.4% last year, so that is exciting! What do you attribute that too?” *You will impress them!
#4 It’s JUST not an employer directed Q&A.
*it just appears to be one, and might be if you don’t interrupt that train.
If you are confident in who you are and what you bring to a team, then you should ALSO be interviewing the company you are talking to. When there is a window, and as it is appropriate, by all means ask about the vision of the company! Ask where they see the company in 1 or 5 years etc. Ask what impact it has had on the community. Take that time to reveal some of the research you should have done on them, and show your knowledge, intelligence and commitment to getting this job. And as you are asked questions, answer them very intentionally! If you are asked, “Did you like your last job” Do not say “Yes”. They are fishing. Answer: “Yes I really did. It challenged me in many ways, and expanded my knowledge of our customer, and how to prepare a presentation for them to meet their unique needs…” Take the stage when you answer! Not over the top like an ego maniac. But it’s your time to tell them why they should hire YOU! Why are you the best fit? Or why will they like you over 10 other applicants that have the same or better credentials? What sets you apart? Make it real. Make it personal. Make it strike a chord. CONNECT. *Be a person, not a resume.
#3 Use FRESH WORDS.
“The truth is…” “I like to think outside of the box…” “The Early bird gets the worm…” “I like to empower others…” Blah Blah blah. These and others have been OVERUSED. So don’t recycle them-again. Say something NEW, unique and energetic, that conveys the essence of what you really want to communicate.
If you want to say “The truth is…” to convey that you are honest and straightforward, say instead: “Here is the truth about where I am at on this at my very core, I value people tremendously, each one for their unique story and purpose…” Be real, specific, conversational not scripted, and be memorable!
If you want to say …”I want to be a good loyal member of your team” say instead “I too have a vision. I know from the research I conducted about XYZ company, that I am truly in alignment with where you are going, what you intend to create, and I am confident I am one of your dynamic players in the future, in helping to make that vision come alive in the months and years to come.” *Be yourself, but be INSPIRING!
#2 Don’t get TRAPPED.
The interview serves two purposes: 1) Find your best candidates (this may take several rounds of interviewing) and 2) Weed out immediately those who are not the best
To make it past the first round you have to do all of the above- and do it well. Most people make up their minds about us quickly, between 30 seconds and 3 minutes. You better pull out your best remarks and answers early on. That is the one of the first primary interview tests, after you pass dress, being on time, and greeting them properly. (firm, confident but warm handshake with a smile)
When they ask you: “What did you like about your last job” again, this is your time to shine! Be warm, be sincere, be specific. Show them who you are above the resume paper! AND then when they ask you what you “Didn’t like about the job” lookout…this can be another huge trap. If you speak about the WORST part about your last job, beware. Your whole energy, facial and body expression, tone of voice and story will be negative and toxic. They will begin to imagine you upset with them, and wonder what nasty remarks you will make about their company company. Not good. Also it’s not professional to bag on a company or past manager etc. So what CAN you do? Pick a MUCH LESSER challenge that occurred. If your #1 was that you didn’t like the overall atmosphere you worked in, don’t say that. Pick something else like: “Our company was not very involved in community events and charities. I noticed when researching XYZ company, that you gave the school district a car last month to help them raise funds for their athletic program. I think companies that support the community and create positive change, are the companies that will last and be the best places to be a part of long-term.” You’ve now said something truthful, but not ugly. Your energy didn’t turn toxic as you shared, you were still personable and positive. *You have also complimented your new prospective company. Very smart.
#1 For the love of all that is good…. FOLLOW UP.
People used to call after an interview to see if they got the job. In fact, when I owned a mortgage business with three locations, I NEVER called the candidates back after the interview. I told them I would. But if they didn’t follow-up with me, I assumed they didn’t want the job, they weren’t assertive enough for me, or they were just not good at follow-up, which is imperative to most jobs. (that is a test)
If you can, go in IN PERSON to follow-up. If not, then call. If you cannot call the company, then email. Email is a last resort. Everyone emails. Everyone has a box full of emails to drudge through daily. Be different. Level up. Do the best form of follow-up communication you possibly can. Outshine your competition while they send a boring email, using the old recycled language. (yawn) Be professional, but again be energetic, memorable, and include a great picture.
*People don’t hire paper, they hire people. People that inspire them.
CILC | CMC | CEBC
CEO Women Ignite Idaho Conference and Trade Show
Master Certified Business Coach
World Changer Leadership & Life Mastery Coach