Thursday, 2 February 2017

Surviving an interview as a 'reserved' person

In job interviews, engaging people do better than reserved ones, even if the reserved one is a better candidate.

When I read this statement I almost fell off my chair. What? You've worked hard to get good grades in school and to get the experience that is needed for this particular job but because you can't schmooze as well as the other guy you are not going to get the job?

 Well it appears so or does it?

I think like anything this is very much case by case.

If you are applying for a technical job then surely your ability and skills are far going to outweigh your ability to chat about what happened on the previous night's episode of 'Keeping up with the Kardashians.' But in saying that if you are applying for a sales position then your ability to chat and small talk may outweigh what you got on your graduation thesis.

Try not too talk too much though because the more you talk the more chance you have of saying something that will turn off the interviewer.

It is kind of like texting with someone that you have a romantic interest in. The telephone in sales and dating is for setting 'appointments' only. The more you say in these conversations the more chance you have of saying something or telling a joke that isn't quite understood and the appointment suddenly becomes difficult to get.

Don't talk too much. Don't give too much away.

For the introverted person, the 'reserved ' ones here are a couple of pieces of advice to deal with interviews that might need a bit of 'chat.'

1. Try to bring the topic around to something that you know well and that the interviewer has some interest in as well. For example, if you both enjoy sports, then talk about that. I would always talk about cricket if I was talking with someone from the Indian sub-continent. More often than not they would have some kind of interest in that sport and bingo, you have a connection.

2. Ask questions. Try to prepare a whole bunch of questions for the interviewer. If they like to chat then give them the opportunity to exercise their mouths. You never know, the more they talk, the more that they are going to enjoy themselves and more likely that they are going to think that you are the best thing since sliced bread because they did all the talking. What an evil plan! You might get the job though so not so evil for you anyway.

What you have to realise is that there are going to be times where you need to be more chatty and you need to be prepared for that. Are you?

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