written by Jo Dakin

Today’s job market is nothing if not competitive. Getting the job is the goal of course, but how? In nearly any job situation today, you’re selling something. Whether it’s a product or a service, you’re offering something valuable to a person who is in need of it. The product that you’re selling in the job seeker role is yourself.

As a job seeker in any career field, you’re going to be interviewed multiple times over the course of your job search. Those interviews are great opportunities for you. Getting the job means you have to close the sale and the interview is the best time to do that.

The question is, what’s the best way to accomplish it?

Bear in mind that you’re not begging for something when you are seeking a job. Presumably you have real skills and talents that will add value to the job. Express those talents and skills and explain how you’ve used them in the past to solve problems for other employers. Meet your interviewers eyes and show your confidence in what you have accomplished and what you can accomplish for their company.

Don’t be afraid to name-drop. Tell your interviewer what you did for the other company and how you did it. Examples are:”At KayRay Software I instituted a Customer Relationship software that resulted in an improved rate of return customers and repeat sales.” Selling your strong points and naming the places where you achieved that success gives you some credibility and gives them something to check on.

Don’t oversell it. No one wants to hear you brag. State simply and succinctly what you bring to the table. Follow it up with another piece of the puzzle. Most candidates are not aware that the companies they are applying to enjoy hearing that you want to work for them. Once you’ve told them that you are able to complete their staff and why, add that you’d like to work for them for __xyz__ reasons. Most employers react well to a prospective employee telling them why they chose to apply to their company.

Prepare well for the interview and learn as much as you can about the person who will be interviewing you. Examine the company culture and the problems that may be inherent in the company. You’re not going to step in and solve them of course but knowing what they are can strengthen your position when you offer your skill set and what you bring to the table.

Phrase your speech as if you are already a part of the company. Use “we,” “us” and “our” when speaking about company’s products and services as if you are a part of the team.

When the interview ends, don’t’ forget to close the sale. While many people are afraid to be bold about it, reiterate that you are available to start at any time that is convenient to them. Don’t forget to express your thanks to the interviewer as you leave. Good manners are appropriate for any situation.

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