If you've been doing your homework on how to write an effective resume, you've seen a recurring theme: you have to quantify your work experience. Although most people understand the general idea of this, we find that job seekers often struggle with applying this idea to writing their resumes.
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Interviews are a crucial opportunity to build your credibility to your prospective employer in minutes. It's so important that you leave your interview with a good impression, because this will set you apart from other applicants early on. The purpose of the interview is simple:
1. Tell Me About Yourself.<img lazy-loadable="true" src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjUwNTMxMS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxODA1NzQ5MH0.PWnDH1fp7mXVjqy6Jmi9Jo2zCU_tVZPsXwixQ9tmUPw/img.jpg?width=980" id="2c987" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="b0c807a4eb0c76006b69ae5f5424fde9" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Job candidate answers the question, "Tell me about yourself," during an interview for a marketing position" /><p>Not your kids, your personal life, or hobbies. <a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/how-to-answer-tell-me-about-yourself" target="_blank">"Tell me about yourself,"</a> is an opportunity for you to briefly state why you're relevant to this job posting, which includes:</p><ol><li>Your educational background.</li><li>Your previous work highlights specific to the role you are applying for.</li></ol>
2. What Skills Are You Looking To Develop In Your Next Job? And Why?<img lazy-loadable="true" src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjUwNTMyMi9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTU5NzczNjIzNn0.xghITVnmYPuVvN7H9XpQkUrXUXfCrEz2cbUkbIWBEjU/img.jpg?width=980" id="279ae" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="be8a64f54fdfc34bdfaa003a98e046ff" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Qualified candidate talks about her skills during a marketing job interview" /><p>Hone in on the marketing skills that would help you become successful in the role that you're applying for. For example, if graphic design is not required in the role, pick another <a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/skills-to-include-on-resume" target="_blank">applicable skill</a> instead.</p><p><strong>Essentially, the interviewer wants to understand your work ethic and how you will continue to grow professionally.</strong></p>
3. What Is One Of Your Professional Weaknesses?<img lazy-loadable="true" src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjUwNTMxNC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxOTI3MzIxOH0.tobBCgaicDRRC4YyO0q607VtoZY1A3MFkEYlqEUv8LM/img.jpg?width=980" id="15ca7" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="59ae1c81704a447475987d4ae9d018b3" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Professional woman interviews for a marketing position" /><p>This question is always tricky to answer because when you're interviewing, you're typically more focused on highlighting the good things about yourself. But, here's why <a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/smart-tips-answering-interview-questions" target="_blank">answering this question</a> correctly can work in your favor:</p><ul><li>You'll show your humility and honesty, both personal character traits that employers value!</li><li>It's a chance for you to present a problem you faced that threatened your work projects and how you overcame this with a solution. Tell them a method you're using to improve this weakness and how you've grown from it.</li></ul><p><strong>Example:</strong> "I was asked to present a marketing proposal to a group of 50 people and struggled with public speaking. I could not balance between reading my PowerPoint slides and making effective eye contact with the audience. I learned that I needed to improve my public speaking skills to effectively engage potential new clients, so I took a public speaking class and now feel more comfortable presenting to large groups of people."<br></p>
4. What Specific Experiences Have You Had That Would Make You A Good Fit?<img lazy-loadable="true" src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjUwNTMzMC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYwMzIxNzk3NH0.YIajF7fM5ic38aHWPyWUbSW6lin1oS2Fd5RD7TIJ8Bs/img.jpg?width=980" id="5d721" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="9c1616a27f86346b9eee72e1797f1a56" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Professional man aces his interview for a marketing job" /><p>It's all about value here. How have you and how will you continue to <a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/building-connections-on-linkedin" target="_blank">add value as a business-of-one</a> to whoever you partner with? In other words, when someone hires you, how do you profit their mission or service? Be sure to use a quantitative experience here.</p><p><strong>Example:</strong> "I worked directly with leadership, clients, and sales to execute our yearly marketing event with a strict budget. I reduced and controlled expenses by partnering with local vendors to lower costs of events by 25%. Now, I can manage large-scale events and reduce company's expenses."<br></p>
5. How Would You Tackle Specific Problems At This Company?<img lazy-loadable="true" src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjUwNTMxOS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY0NjgxNjc0OH0.uyVyMMQC5kUohNL587RD8iZCurMLa5ox9Fo574I0WVE/img.jpg?width=980" id="0e5a2" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="222fc1e9344c0ff3a0f08faa46d443e6" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Job candidate discusses her qualifications for a marketing position" /><p>Employers are fully aware that problems will arise in any workplace environment whether it's with budgets, clients, or project management. What they're more concerned about is whether or not you possess a solution-based mindset.</p><p>So, do you constantly come to your employer with complaints and problems OR do you <a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/top-soft-skills-for-employees" target="_blank">present a problem with mitigation</a>? </p>
One of the biggest job search struggles is figuring out which jobs you should apply for. You have to look at the job description, the skill requirements, and the overall qualifications for the job, and then determine whether it's a viable employment opportunity for you or not.
It's often more difficult discerning which jobs you're qualified for (which you really have a shot at) than you think. So, how do you know if you're actually qualified for a job or not? Should you apply for jobs you're not 100% qualified for?
1. Use The 90% Rule<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="875594ab35d0ca6ab85f2a46671de885"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/YjCSamC3r6o?start=35&rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>The first step to apply for a job you're not sure you are qualified for is determining whether you're qualified <em>enough</em>. This is where the 90% rule comes in to play.</p><p>After studying the job description, the list of qualifications, and the skill requirements, you should have a good idea of what the employment opportunity entails. Now, after looking at your resume, do you think you're qualified? <strong>If you have 90% of the skill requirements, you are qualified for that job and should apply for it. </strong></p><p>When you apply for a job, it's always important to include all relevant skill sets, experience, and keywords on your resume, so it gets past the applicant tracking system (ATS). This is especially true when you only have 90% of the qualifications, since leaving out just one skill could prevent your resume from ever landing in the hands of the hiring manager. </p><p><a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/skills-to-include-on-resume" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Customize your resume</a> for every job you apply for to avoid this mistake. This way, it'll make it easy for employers to see that you <em>do </em>have most of the qualifications and skill requirements for the position. Remember: 90% is the magic number. Any less, and you'd be wasting your time if you apply. </p>
2. Close The Experience Gap<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="3a9258dd1ccc5b00e7964d8c7f55e985"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/sxL_GMRDRlw?start=58&rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>In order to close your experience gap, you need to offer the employer something else they won't find in most job candidates—and that's excitement for the job opportunity.</p><p>What you lack in experience you can make up with common connection. <strong>Convey to the potential employer your enthusiasm and excitement for the company's products, services, or mission.</strong> Explain what you respect and admire about the company. Even if you don't have some of the experience and qualifications the employer is looking for, you have the internal motivation and desire to work for their company.</p><p>In addition, this connection shows that you would be a great <a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/answer-why-you-want-this-job" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">cultural fit</a> within the company. Whatever skills you don't have, they can probably teach you. But employers know you can't teach cultural fit. This is where you would stand out among other candidates for the position. </p><p>A great way to establish that connection with an employer is to write a <a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/how-to-write-cover-letter" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">disruptive cover letter</a>. Tell your story, convey your excitement, and land that interview!</p>
3. Network Your Way Into The Company<span style="display:block;position:relative;padding-top:56.25%;" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="95389f30e0c564f4ea2025dd7fb48a54"><iframe lazy-loadable="true" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/uJa_ZAtqxzk?start=21&rel=0" width="100%" height="auto" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" style="position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%;"></iframe></span><p>Here at Work It Daily, we believe your network is your net worth. And the statistics agree. Over 80% of jobs are gotten via referral. So, receiving a job offer usually comes down to who you know.</p><p>If you're not 100% qualified for a job, your networking skills will play a big role in your ability to get an interview. Use your <a href="https://www.workitdaily.com/6-networking-icebreakers" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">network</a> to get introduced to someone who works at the company. Begin by reaching out to current employees of the company or friends who might happen to work there, and ask what it would take to stand out and get hired. <strong>Note you're <em>not </em>asking for the job.</strong> You're just asking for more information.</p><p>This strategy is extremely effective at opening doors with potential employers and getting your resume in the right hands.</p>
Every time you interview, your main purpose is to convince the employer to hire you. The job search is a sales process. The hiring manager (your future boss) is the "customer," and you are both the sales rep and the product. Why should they choose you over all the other "products" out there?
Focus On What You Can Do For The Employer<img lazy-loadable="true" src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMTA5OTMxMC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY1MjE2MjIxN30.LWafcz6G4-vLEr8sFRqB49igfJJmHGUDdowskLGBbdY/img.jpg?width=980" id="d799f" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="e92c32e212dd56773f6046cfc535d72d" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Job candidate explains why the employer should hire her" /><p>This question is actually a fantastic opportunity for you to summarize why you'd be a great hire.</p><p>Always focus your answer on what benefits you bring, what problems you can solve, and what solutions you can provide. Never, ever say that they should hire you because you need the job or because you really want it—or anything remotely related to <em>your </em>reasons for wanting the job. This is your chance to connect the dots and help the employer see why you're the best person for the job.</p><p>Think about things you know the hiring manager (interviewer) is looking for: skill sets, background, character traits, personal qualities, education, experience, or anything else that will make you successful in this role. Relate your answer to these things.</p>
Give An Example<img lazy-loadable="true" src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMTA5OTI4OC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxMDUzNjM5M30.iny5a3JVdBMHHF3ugoFTNBwSJmdaNPGiwH92W7VyudE/img.jpg?width=980" id="d30d7" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="c00bdecb84dce13e10046c1a77f233a0" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Man gives an example of why the hiring manager should hire him" /><p>Explain how you meet the employers needs and give an example to support your answer.</p><p>Your answer should be framed like this: "You should hire me because you've said you want someone with A, B, and C. I fit all of your requirements. I have A (say what that is), B (maybe give an example), and C (elaborate further)."</p><p>This will help you stand out from the other candidates and it gives the employer a reason to hire you.</p>
Keep The Job Description (And Your Skills!) In Mind<img lazy-loadable="true" src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMTA5OTMyOC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYyMzgxNDgwOX0.8-VhW_Axaf5sXXtDWz2jEei365cDN72ujNcJi0zqlvY/img.jpg?width=980" id="97198" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="56c34e6aba917b666fd8e3eb031e811f" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" alt="Job candidate answers the question, "Why should we hire you?" during an interview" /><p>Typically, this question will come toward the end of the interview, so you can refer to what you've already talked about, or mention something new that you know they'd be interested in. If it comes in the beginning, use the job description and your research to answer.</p><p><em>Will this job require long hours?</em> Mention your work ethic.</p><p><em>Will this job need someone with great communication skills?</em> Give an example of yours.</p><p><em>Will this job need someone who can learn on the fly?</em> Tell them how you're going to get up to speed quickly and how you've learned and adapted before.</p><p><em>Does this job need someone with a particular background?</em> Mention yours.</p><p><em>Do you have the skill set they want?</em> Talk about your skill set and how you have been successful with it.</p><p>Give them examples of what you have achieved in the past. If you haven't done this job before, talk about similar things you've done, or qualities you have that will make you successful in this new role.<br></p>
The job interview—this is where it all really begins! While your resume may have impressed the hiring manager and helped you get your foot in the door, now you really have to bring home those points on the resume in person. Failing to convey the right message in the job interview means it is game over!