As election day approaches and the fight for the most coveted job in American politics continues, our Presidential candidates might want to review the below interviewing tips. After all, they are interviewing for a job and unfortunately, making some of the most common job seeker mistakes!
Be honest, but don’t be horrifying
It’s great to say what you really think. Giving a unique perspective shows you’re capable of original thought and innovation. But…be wary of letting it all hang out. Being different is never a bad thing, but being seen as a loose cannon isn’t the best way to win allies and influence people. While it may work for presidential candidates with comb-overs who have enjoyed a second career as a reality TV star, it doesn’t really work for the rest of us.
Don’t be too closed off
An interview can be uncomfortable and make you feel like you’re under a microscope. As a result, you may unknowingly project your internal discomfort, leaving the interviewer wondering who you really are and what you’re really all about. Eh hem…Hillary. You may have the best intentions, but if that isn’t conveyed explicitly, you can forget about being hired or being President.
Admit that you’ve made mistakes but show that you’ve learned from them
Without a doubt this is advice all politicians should heed. They’re only human. Mistakes are a part of life and are great pathways for personal and professional development. Being capable of admitting your mistakes is a trait employers look for and so should the American public when looking for a leader. If you’re ever asked for an example you don’t need to go into too much detail. But you must be sure to take responsibility. Share what you learned from the mistake and be sure to mention that you’ll never let it happen again. It could look something like this “I unfortunately made a bad decision for the country for my own personal convenience. Using my personal email for official U.S. business was wrong, I own that and I have learned from my mistake. As a result, I’m going to pause before making such decisions to consider who is actually benefiting from the action and make sure the answer is always the people of the United States.
Try not to insult the interviewer
During an interview, you may be asked questions you think challenge your skill set, judgement and overall ability to perform the job. You may even find some line of questioning irrelevant, simply because you sense the interviewer doesn’t like you. Whatever the reason, remember that you will be judged by your actions and the way you handle yourself in a tough situation. Keep your composure and be respectful of the interviewer. You always have the right to decline to answer a specific question, if you feel it is out of line. Apply this rule whether you’re being interviewed by a hiring manager or a journalist. In the end they usually have the upper hand in the situation. #MegynKellyRules
Avoid trashing other candidates
Again one could say that all politicians need to learn from this. When presidential candidates trash their competition, they look ugly for doing so and if you try to talk in superlatives regarding why you’re the candidate that should be hired over the others, you will too. So, what should you do when asked why you should be hired over other candidates? Acknowledge that you don’t know your competition and therefore aren’t in a position to say you’re the best. Speak to your own accomplishments and personal attributes that will make you a good fit for the role.
Keep the main goal in focus…to serve the greater whole
Job seekers, just like Presidential candidates, have personal agendas. In fact, they both have special interest groups to appease, whether it’s is an organization, a family or their own ego. However, when applying for a job you must remember that the most important agenda to push forward is the company’s. Show with specific examples how you can use your skills to help the organization move forward. It may be a challenge to blend your enthusiasm for how the role satisfies your professional goals with how you can ultimately help the organization progress but it’s one you need to take on and live up to. Politicians may be able to sing a different tune once in office but, for better or worse they, have a solid four years of job security ahead of them.