Thursday, April 19, 2012

Companies want decision makers

I read this article today:

I agree. Most of my clients are looking for people who feel confident that they can figure out the problems that are weighing on their organization and fix them. They want people that can make decisions.

The best way to prove that you are this type of person is to first, ask questions about their pressing problems or the problems specific to the position you're interviewing for. Second, give them a map of how you would go about solving the problem and/or how you've solved similar problems in the past.

Monday, April 16, 2012

How to speak in an interview: Talker personalities

We're to the final personality profile. The Talker. If the person interviewing you has a talker personality, look out. Talker's are called talker's for a reason, because they can gab. That can throw you off your game, so make sure you stay focused. Talker's are by nature extremely warm and friendly, which can help you relax. Don't be deceived though, their inviting disposition can be a trap. Many people get more liberal with what they say and do when communicating with a talker because of that disposition. You might say some things that you regret because they made you feel like you could be brutally honest.

Here's some tips on how to handle this. First and foremost, reciprocate their overly amicable nature. Compliment them often. Don't be patronizing when you do it, be genuine about what you compliment. Don't go overboard or they'll feel you're both patronizing and disingenuous.

Second, be very expressive. Use gestures. Exaggerate your facial expressions a little. They'll interpret this as passion, which is what a talker will look for.

Third, talk in terms of what compels you, not obligations and duty. For example, say I "enjoy it," or "I helped them do this," instead of  "It was part of the job," and short emotionless answers like "I did this or that." The former express that you feel an inner passion. 

In summary, be overly friendly, be passionate and expressive, but don't go overboard. Be genuine. Most importantly, talker's are more focused on the feeling they get about you. So make sure it's genuine and positive.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

How to speak in an interview: Pacer personalities

When interviewing with a pacer personality you must understand one important thing. Their decision process is most likely slower than yours, unless you're a predominant pacer personality yourself. Have you ever given some one what you think is a no brainer decision, including all the facts they would need to make that decision, yet they still said I don't know I have to think about it. Worse yet, it was just a simple unimportant decision. Yeah, that's a pacer. This easily frustrates the doer and talker personalities. 

Another attribute of the pacer is their patience and listening ability. If you're not careful they'll let you talk and talk and talk until you've dug your own grave. You may feel like you're saying all the wrong things because of the lack of responsiveness.

So how do you interact appropriately with a pacer?

Immediately, it would be important to find out what to them are the deciding factors for this position. In other words, ask them: in your opinion what would the optimal candidate be like? Let's say for example they will say we need someone who is thorough and a perfectionist. You need to pull out your bag of power statements (again search this term in my blog archive if it's not familiar) and give them as many examples of your thoroughness and perfectionism as you can. The whole point is you want to get their buy in. Pacers are all about warm fuzzies. They need to feel reassured. So give them lot's of reasons and benefits.

Also, you definitely want probably close to a gagillion references on hand, approximately. And you want them to be as third party as possible, so no co-workers, managers and executives (that worked closely with you) only. Again, the more you understand what their expected the timetable is and what factors will decide who they pick, the better you'll be able to do things at their pace. And that will win over a pacer.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

How to speak in an interview: Doer personalities

Now it's time to go over the Doer personality. What would your interview be like if the person conducting the interview was a doer? They would be curt or short in their speech. They would try to move things along quickly and try to cut straight to the weightier matters. They want to see results. They want to know what the bottom line is.

This type of personality can come off as impatient and short, which could make some feel like they're just trying to blow you off. You may feel like you're saying all the wrong things. Perhaps, you just feel like they're being rude.

Those things may be true for some, but most of the time it is just how Doers communicate. Especially with Doers DON'T TAKE IT PERSONAL. They are just extremely focused on being effective, efficient, priority-oriented, etc. It's not about you, it's about them.

Here's how you respond...

Give them the major points. They are not interested in the details. They want to know what results you've accomplished in your past positions. So come prepared before hand with power statements (search my blog if that's a new terminology for you), so that you're organized and confident. Confidence is key with Doers because they are confident in general. Also, do not give excuses or talk unnecessarily. These will cause them to get impatient with you. Above all try to be confident about what your saying and give them only the information that will prove that you can get the job done. 

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

How to speak in an interview

It's important to know how to speak in an interview. The most important advice I can give on this is to imitate the interviewer. People respond better to those that are more like them. They think to themselves, now finally a person who really understands the world. This will inevitably improve your position in the interview.

So how do you do it? First, you must understand the their language and then how to properly respond. Here is a quick personality chart. Remember no one person can be categorized into these personalities. Every person is extremely dynamic and is a combination of these personalities. However understanding these can help you to better understand and respond to others.

The 4 different personalities are Controller, Doer, Pacer, Talker. Today I'll just go over the controller personality. Here are some tendencies of controller personalities. They are detail oriented. They want to know all the facts and data so that they can be in control, so they will ask you a lot of questions. They want to feel like they were able to get to the root of the story and solve the case. While they're questioning you, they don't use many gestures which leaves you believing that they are very skeptical of you and suspicious that you are not the real deal Holyfield.

Have you ever run into someone like this before in an interview? Here's how to approach them. Again, depending on your personality you will find this easier or more difficult to do.

So here we go. Be courteous and diplomatic. Controller's will like that you are acting "appropriate" for the situation. Make sure that your questions and answers have a purpose. Don't ask questions that are not related to the job. Do not criticize. Although controller personalities can be big critics themselves, you don't want to criticize your last employer or they might see that as your weakness not the employers. They'll assume that you're going to have similar issues if you were to get this job.