If you make it to the interview, you may be surprised to hear them tell you that they think you are overqualified for this job. If you are of a ‘certain age,’ this may very well be code for ‘you’re too old’ or ‘you’ll cost too much.’ They may also be worried that you only want this job as a place-holder until the job you actually want comes along. Related: How To Answer 5 Tricky Job Interview Questions Even if you really are overqualified for the job, you may want it for your own reasons and don’t need them to knock you out of the running. So how can you address this issue in your job interview? First, you want to think about what they’re really asking here. Will you be taking a significant salary cut if you take this job? Do they think you’ll be bored working in that role? Are they harboring some kind of bias against you because you’re over 50 or even 60? No matter what the issue is, your mission is the same: point out why you’re a good fit for the job, why you want it and why they will be happy with you. When you think about it this way, it really isn’t that different from any other interview answer. They want to feel better about making the decision to hire you. To answer this question specifically, you might try: “I may be overqualified for this job, but I see that as a bonus for you. With me in the role, you’ll have someone who’s done this before and understands what needs to happen in order to be successful. I am ready to do well here from the first day.” This is a nice way to frame your answer, because employers want their four basic questions answered: Do you understand the job? Can you do the job? Will you do the job? Do you pose a risk to their own continued employment? Another way to say this is: “I probably am overqualified for the job, but it looks like a perfect fit to me because of A, B, and C.” You fill in A, B, and C with your reasons why this job is a good fit. One gentleman I know wanted the job literally because it cut his commute time by something like an hour each way. To him, that quality of life he would gain without that commute was worth it. So he pointed out to them that, “My house is paid off and I don’t want to move. I like where I live and I want more time in my life to enjoy it. This office is five minutes from my house, and I am very excited to have that extra time every day.” Once they understood that, they were excited to offer him the job. Your reasons could be because you really admire that company, or because you want to travel more (or less) or because you have always loved their products. Tell them why they’re perfect for you, and help them see that you’re a great fit for the job. Always be strategic in your interview answers and sell yourself for the job. Find more than 200 job-winning answers in How to Answer Interview Questions and How to Answer Interview Questions II, available on Amazon. This post was originally published at an earlier date.
Why do hiring managers ask tricky job interview questions? They ask because for them, hiring you is a risk. They try to minimize the risk by asking questions designed to uncover problems with you or your qualifications. Answer them well, and they will feel comfortable offering you the job.
If you are sending your resume out but not getting multiple invitations to interview, your resume needs some improvement. To stand out and generate interviews, your resume needs to grab the attention of recruiters and hiring managers who flip through resumes quickly, and it needs to spark their interest with the kind of information that makes them want to know more. Related: 5 Tips To Make Your Resume Stand Out
As a general rule, we can and should learn from our failures—that includes interviews. As a recruiter, I have always been impressed with candidates who ask me for honest feedback about their strengths and weaknesses. However, when it comes to giving feedback about how a candidate performed in the interview, it can become tricky, both for recruiters and hiring managers.
Do you hate writing cover letters? Most people do. However, employers expect to see a cover letter with your resume. They read your letter and form impressions of you as a candidate based on what they read. A bad cover letter (or a lack of one at all) can cause you to lose the chance to interview. Related: How To Write A Cover Letter That Will Get You Hired The good news is that it’s easier than you think to write a cover letter that gives them a very positive first impression, makes you stand out from other candidates and gets you an interview.
Asking questions in job interviews is always a good idea…it shows that you’ve done your homework, that you are interested and enthusiastic about the job, and it gives you a better interview overall. Related: 5 Things To Ask In A Job Interview You always want to ask smart questions about the job and the company, but there are two questions that will have an enormous impact on your interview success. The first question helps you deliver better interview answers, and the second boosts your chances of getting the job by 30% - 40%.
How difficult is it to write a cover letter that makes a great first impression on a potential employer, highlights your best qualities, and makes you stand out? With the right information, it’s really not that difficult. The good news is that a cover letter that does all these things will practically guarantee you an interview.
No matter how talented, skilled, or educated you are…if you’re an introvert, you're at a bit of a disadvantage in a job search. I am not an introvert, but I speak to a lot of them, coaching them through the process of getting a new job. Related: How Introverts Can Land A Better Job The vast majority of them are amazing, highly qualified people who do their jobs extremely well—but they have a lot of trouble when it comes time to get hired. There’s one piece of advice I give that introverts almost universally step back from or even sneer at. Here’s what it is…are you ready? The job search is a sales process, and you need to ‘sell yourself’ within that process. What I’ve found is that job seekers with more reserved personalities aren’t as interested in hearing this. They take a big step back from this kind of mindset, because it comes with a need for more aggressiveness or assertiveness than they might be naturally comfortable with in a job search. If you’re an introvert, what kind of image pops up in your mind when you hear that? An overly-aggressive used-car salesman? A pitchman on a TV infomercial? Put those thoughts out of your head. That isn’t at all what I mean. What I’m talking about is a guideline or a frame of reference you can use to take action that will get you hired. It does require you to step out of your comfort zone, but the rewards for making that effort are great. You have a greater chance of winding up in a job you love, rather than a job that appears in front of you that may not be the best fit. You will almost certainly get a job faster, which puts money in your pocket in terms of a paycheck. Months without earning a paycheck adds up to thousands of dollars in lost income. How does it work in practical terms? In the big picture, you are the ‘product,’ the hiring manager (your future boss) is the ‘customer,’ and your salary is the ‘purchase price.’ The psychological process of an employer choosing to hire you is the same as that of a customer choosing to buy a product. When you break that down, you see that: 1. Your resume is a marketing document (not a job history) that needs to reveal the benefits of the product using data-based evidence. That means using numbers, dollars and percentages to describe your accomplishments. (See more about resume quantification here.) 2. Your social media profiles are advertising—like commercials or billboards that grab attention and generate interest in your product. (You must be on LinkedIn, but don’t forget the power of Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms.) 3. The interview is a sales call where you’re talking to the customer about what your product can do for them. How can you benefit that company? What do you bring? When you think of it this way, all of your interview answers become another way for you to show or describe what they’ll get out of hiring you. This makes all your answers much more effective. 4. Also in the interview, you’ll bring ‘sales materials’ that are printed evidence of the benefits of your product. You’ll bring a brag book that shows your past successes, as well as a 30-60-90-day plan that maps out what you will do for them in the future. (Find out more about 30-60-90-day plans here.) 5. At the end of the interview, you act like a sales rep and close. This means that you ask for the business or the sale—the job. You say something like, “Based on what we’ve talked about so far, do you agree that I would be a good fit for this job?” This question is a technique borrowed directly from sales pitches. Most introverts are intensely uncomfortable with the idea of closing. However, I think that the results you will get from it are worth stepping out of your comfort zone. When you close, you increase your chances of getting the job offer by 30% - 40%. If you do feel uncomfortable, stop thinking of it as a sales technique. Think of it as good communication—because it is. You’re simply asking, ‘Are we on the same page?’ ‘Have I told you everything you need to know?’ All of these steps are really about communicating more effectively with hiring managers. Better communication is a goal worth chasing for all of us. If you’re an introvert, coming at your job search with this mindset will help you get a better job. I encourage you to learn more about this by attending on of my free training webinars and learning more practical tips that will get you hired.