Establish a Unique Presence - January 15,20140 comments

There are two things every job seeker must do to secure a great job: Create an interview-winning resume, and nail the interview. With our years of experience we have a unique perspective on what will make you stand out during the interview process and leave a lasting positive impression during the hiring process.  We work hands on with all of our clients to carefully prepare them as they develop their resume and coach them for their interview. For some resume writing tips please see our previous blog post. A resume is arguably the most important part of the job seeking process. But what else can you do to help you land that job? No matter how impressive a resume is, it is not a sure ticket to success. In this feature we tackle a few other areas that will help you stand out from the competition.

1. Do your homework

Ensure that you show up to the interview well prepared. At Perkins Professional Search (PPS) we encourage our candidates to research potential employers to ensure it is a good match for them. Is the organization a good cultural fit? Does their business strategy match with yours? Will you excel with their leadership style and work environment? We then do OUR homework with the candidate to prepare them for their interview. Below are some of the preparation suggestions we recommend:

  • Visit and read the company website, their competition’s website, brochures, news releases, magazine articles, google the client, look on LinkedIn, talk to others in the industry and really get to know the organization.
  • Review the job requirements and prepare responses that highlight your skills and strengths.

2. Show Up!

Show up on time… or early. The interview is more than just answering questions. It’s the most important moment in your job search and your one and only opportunity to make a favourable impression to the employer and show who you are professionally.

3 Be ready to sight examples to prove your skills.

Employers want to know the details of your work history and skill-set you’ve gained that tells them you have what it takes to do the job. Be prepared to give examples of your experiences that provide the interviewer with evidence of your unique skills and talents. Everyone says “they are a quick learner”. Instead, relate a example of a situation when you had to learn a skill quickly and had positive results. Relating a compelling example rather than a generic statement tells the interviewer you are credible and have the experience they are seeking.

4 Master and Communicate your Special Skills

While you are relating your experience take this opportunity to communicate any special skills you possess that will make you stand out from the rest. Do you have extra training? Taking classes, attended workshops or conferences, do you have designations or additional schooling?  Employers look for these “extras” that you possess as it communicates your commitment and interest in your career and the importance you place on personal development that in turn will help them as the employer.

5 Ask Questions

For example:

  • What are the top three challenges that I will face in this position?
  • What are the most important results I will need to achieve in the first 3 to 6 months?
  • What are the three most difficult challenges the company is facing in the next 3 to 6 months?

Asking questions during your interview expresses your interest in the position and the company. Write down a list of 5 or more questions that you will ask during the interview. Be sure they are focused on details of the position.

6 Ask for the job

As the interview comes to a close, ensure the interviewer gets a clear message that you feel qualified for the position and clearly express that you are interested in the opportunity. As the old adage goes “ask and you shall receive”. Before leaving be sure to ask the interviewer what the next steps are in the hiring process when they anticipate making a decision. If you demonstrate your confidence and interest in a professional manor this will communicate your intentions and potentially set you apart from any other candidates who may have simply thanked the interviewer and left.

Don’t forget to always write a thank you note (email).

At PPS we coach all of our candidates what to expect during the hiring process and how they can stand out above the rest. Do you have additional advice or experience in your job search you’d like to share?

Add your comments below or contact us to get started on the path in your career search.

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