BOSS: Can you lead as a manager and not be popular at times?
CANDIDATE: I work well with teams, have high performance and get results
BOSS: I need someone who can kick butt and take names
CANDIDATE: There may be other ways to get better performance
BOSS: As a leader, like me, are you willing to be disliked?
CANDIDATE: You must be a GREAT leader!
Some bosses may not like the answers to their questions. It’s better if you’re prepared for the questions that you know will be asked, and are ready with the best answer possible. One of the questions that is almost always asked is: “Why are you looking to leave your current job?”
Here are couple of guidelines to follow, then some examples of potential answers:
- Don’t ramble as it sounds like your making something up on the spot. Keep it short.
- Never go negative on your current boss or organization. Never assign shortfall performance as the fault of others. It shows a lack of taking responsibility.
- Talk about the goals you want to attain and how you want to move toward greater responsibilities. Maybe you’re limited in expanding your current role.
- Focus on the qualities that you bring to the new organization, especially past experiences that can be applied to this open position.
Depending upon the persona you want to present, these examples may help:
- “I haven’t been looking for a new position, but was contacted by a recruiter (or another professional) who thought I’d be a good fit. It matches my skill sets and experiences. The opportunities for added responsibilities was very attractive.”
- “I’ve been testing the marketplace because I don’t see a great deal of growth in my field with my current employer. I want to contribute at a higher level.”
- “My skills and results are best utilized in a growth mode, as my high-performance record shows. Currently we’re focused on only maintaining our competitive position.”
- “I’ve been with ABC Company for 6 years with great performance reviews and major contributions to the company’s success. I don’t see a career path opening up and am looking for a new opportunity to contribute at a higher level.”
One word of caution: Be careful not to say anything that can be challenged or your unable to verify through documentation. If you say that you, “Improved performance of your unit by 10% by changing the way the company does business”, the response will be questions like, “What did you do?” “How did you do it” “Were you a part of a team or by yourself?” “How much did it cost” “How do you know you improved performance by 10%”. Be prepared to answer these questions.
When you look at your resume, do three things:
- For each line of your resume, what questions would you ask as a hiring manager?
- Prepare answers for each of those questions
- What 2 or 3 follow-up questions is the hiring manager bound to ask?
For a FREE critique of your resume, send to: firstname.lastname@example.org