Picture yourself as a hiring manager having to select a key individual to help you reach your goals. Without this key person, you may fall short of your objectives. You had 100 applications which you narrowed down to the top 10. You just finished a telephone screen with the top 10 applicants and will interview face-to-face with the top 3 candidates. What will you be looking for? How will you make your decision? What are the key elements that the finalist candidate must have to be offered the position? Let’s look at what a hiring manager usually looks for and how you can increase your chance of success:
First off, the top 10 out of 100 applicants must have a compelling resume. Look for:
- Experiences from their past jobs that can directly transfer to your open position
- Measurable results that are impressive and can add value to your potential results
- Education and skills that parallel the requirements listed on the position description
Next, the telephone screening interview. Hiring managers look for:
- A validation of skills, experiences and results confirming the accuracy of the resume
- A solid assurance that they can do the immediate job and advance your performance
- An engaging, positive and comfortable interaction between you and the candidate
Next, an in-depth face-to-face interview to narrow down the field from 3 to 1. Look for:
- A significant differentiator that separates one of the candidates from the other two
- A high level of compatibility with your potential work group. Must be a team player.
- Past results that can assure high performance in the new job
- The ability to assume more responsibility and leadership over time
- A stronger working relationship with the boss than the other two
- A sense of commitment to the work, the company, and to you
If you, as a candidate, are trying to sell your competence to the potential boss, what are the skills and experiences that will dazzle the hiring manager? Ask yourself the question, “Given the position description, if I were the hiring manager what would be the key background, experiences and results necessary to be a top candidate?”.
The answer? Take the position description and match. line by line, your experiences and results. What have you done that parallels each line item? Then ask the questions that the hiring manager would ask, “What did you do? How did you do it? What were the results?” Practice answering these questions about each of the line items on your resume.
Your outcome as a candidate will depend upon four points: Understand what the hiring manager is looking for through the position description. Match those needs with your prior experiences. Convey your high-performance results that you achieved against the key items on the position description. Then establish a strong working relationship with the hiring manger as a team player
Hiring managers will only hire those who can do the job and easily fit into the organization.
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