Thursday, June 23, 2016

Controlling Interview Nerves

How Not To Compete With Yourself

Whether you’re an engineer, a CEO, or a finance expert, interview nervousness can affect even the best-prepared job candidate. Here is some tips on how to deal with interview nerves.

1) Get the interviewer to talk first and give yourself time to calm yourself - for example ask...
  • “How long have you worked here?”
  • “I am curious - why did you join this company?”
  • “Where did you work before here?”
2) Change your thinking. Think about the interview as a conversation between two professionals on a subject of mutual interest (your fit with the job that you are being interviewed for). Behave like an employee discussing your first work assignment.

3) Know your Interviewer. Use your network (or your headhunter) to find out who is going to interview you, not just the company name but the name of the person. Learn about their background. LinkedIn can help here, Google is good too. Study news articles and other facts about the company. Research the interviewer. See if you can find out their style so you know what to expect.

What do you do to control interview nerves? Post your methods and let’s comment on what works best. Join us on the blog,

Friday, June 3, 2016

Their Pain Your Gain

Candidate Arrives for Technical Interview

Understanding the pain of the hiring manager can give you the advantage during a technical interview situation.

First, if they have a job opening it means they have more work than their team is capable of doing with the team they currently have.  They may have lost an existing team member, or just have additional expectations from their managers.

Second, in addition to doing the job they are currently understaffed to do, they need to grow their team. This means not only sourcing, but screening and interviewing candidates.

Third, they are probably not very good at hiring.  They would never tell you this, but they were likely originally hired for their technical skill, or their skill at managing an existing team. Unless it is a start up environment most teams need only hire 2 or 3 people a year, so the typical line manager does not have a lot of experience with interviewing candidates.

Most hiring managers just want it all to end.

This is good news. This means they probably want to offer you the job. In the interview, you should focus on making yourself a "safe" candidate. This means your energy should be spent on removing doubts about your abilities.

Try to focus the conversation around your experience, and your ability to work with others.

Some people are not good team members.  They are a nightmare to work with. This means that you should talk about your experience in working with other people, and you should make it clear that these problems won’t be an issue with you. If you talk about technical things, like tools and techniques in addition to the social dynamics of the team, you will get more credibility.

Talk about projects or work you are currently doing and that you are excited about.  If you’re genuinely excited by the work it will be easy to authentically speak with a voice that showcases that passion.

When the interviewer asks you if you have any questions, ask them questions.

It’s also important that you genuinely care about the answers to the questions too. What are your thoughts about their response? Start a conversation.

Demonstrate that they care about the details of the work environment. Ask questions about the position, the role, and the company.

By understanding your interviewer and taking away their pain you can gain credibility as a candidate.