Are you aware that you run your job interview? I bet your not! I bet you think you are the passive participant in a job interview controlled by the interviewer. If you think you are Passive Participant then you will be!
Consider this, who runs a news conference the President or the reporters? The reporters ask the tough questions and all the President does is answer the questions. But pay attention next time, the President has his Key Messages and he answers the questions in a way that communicates his Key Messages. He stays “on message” despite the questions just as you should in your interviews.
What is the most important point that you want to get across to your interviewer. This point is the your Key Message. Your Key Message addresses why you are an excellent candidate for the job and why hiring you is the smart choice.
Here are some important points for your Key Message-
What do you want your interviewers to remember from your interview?
When you walk out of the interview room and one interviewer turns to the other and asks, “So what do you think of ________?’ What do you want the response to be? That is your Key Message! Example ” I think _____ is a really experienced customer service rep and they are really dedicated to making customers happy. They would fit our customer service team really well.”
Make that Key Message simple and concrete:
Decide you main “selling point” the thing that best qualifies you for the job and may differentiate you from others. Write it down as a simple clear statement. ‘I am qualified for the position because I have have a dedication to customer service and I will work with a customer until they are satisfied”.
Repeat your message:
Repetition reinforces your message and will help the interviewer fix your message in their mind. Inject your message into the interview whenever you can.
Have the interviewer focus on your Key Message:
You want the interviewer to be paying attention when you state your Key Message. You can do this by saying something like:
Here’s is an important thing about me. Then pause….then say your Key Message.
This called a flag because it’s like waving a flag to say pay attention to the next thing that your going to say.
Keep your message short but not too short:
The shorter your key message the easier it will be for you to say, and for your interviewer to grasp and remember. However, it should not be so short that it does not communicate your benefit to their company.
Match you Key Message to the job:
Be sure your you Key Message addresses the most important requirement of the job. To accomplish this make sure you know the job requirements and the value you bring to the job.
Tell a story and end it with your Key Message:
People love stories, it engages them on an intellectual and emotional level. So tell stories in your interview, and finish them with your Key Message. Example, “Story/Story/Story/Story and that is an example of how I work with customers until they are satisfied.”
Focusing on communicating your Key Message will help you steer the interview and leave the interviewer with the message you want them to have registered in their thinking. The more memorable your Key Message the more convincing you will be. So, use your Key Message to be an Active Participant (AP) in the interview not a Passive Participant.