Job Seekers Interview Tip: Don’t Give Answers, Tell Stories

“Before a big interview, most people will spend time to prepare answers for likely interview questions. This is useful and can get you prepared for the basics.”

“The trouble is that the interviewer is not looking for answers that are already on your resume, they want to hear something that adds to it.”

“You have to realize that a successful interview isn’t a cross examination, it’s a conversation. If you want to break out of the question/answer ping pong match, you should aim to sprinkle in some interesting information about yourself in the shape of stories.”

“The human brain is hard wired to remember stories, not just the words but the visuals that went through the listeners head as well. Marketers make very clever use of stories to sell products and services and so should you.”

by Jorgen Sundberg

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streetsmartprof‘s insight:

Jogen provides numerous examples of stories you can tell in an interview.

As with any story, practice is recommended and try to come up with the best stories to tell about yourself. Regardless how good you are at telling stories, even a bad story comes out poorly.

Think about how many times you’ve walked away from a conversation at a party where the reason you moved on was having to listen to really bad stories.

The other hint is to make sure every story has a point and get to it quickly. Ideally, every story you tell in an interview should be less then 90 seconds. If the hiring manager is interested, you will hear these words, “tell me more.”

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Can a Social Business Help Improve the Customer Experience?

“The days when you can control your brand through your website are long gone. Customers are getting information about your brand and products through a number of different channels and if you aren’t listening and engaging these channels, you won’t only miss new business opportunities, but will quickly see the competition pass you by.”

“While some form of social in any enterprise setting is now commonplace, just because you add a social feature to your application doesn’t mean that you have transformed into a social business and are succeeding in using social to improve the customer experience.”

“Doing social for social sake won’t get you anywhere. Organizations must move beyond a social checklist and truly understand how to connect, collaborate and improve customer experiences and then act.” By John Newton, (@johnnewton)

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streetsmartprof‘s insight:

John’s article is more around the “what and why”. Starting from the top and working down towards the “how”, without getting into the details.

His thought process around how a B2B company may need to transform to revolve around the customer while using social tools seems dead on to my experience over the years.

Think about it this way. In the past, the “main voice” of the customer was gathered in round about ways and was always filtered, some way, some how. Instant insights into what customers liked or disliked around products, features and capabilities from their own words was slow to come to the table.

Now a person can listen in directly to customer and prospect dialogues around their company products and brand. Hearing directly from those who are active on social sites. (Which is never all of the customer base and may not be a majority today in many industries.)

Truely listening to the customer voice allows companies to begun the transition to a company who connects and collaborates with their customers in real time. Something which was more difficult to do in years past.

If your customers and prospects are active on social sites their insights, ideas and suggestions can help improve the overall customer experience for others.

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4 Career Growth Questions For Your Boss – Forbes

“Are you on the right career path?”

“Are you growing and being challenged?”

“If you answered no to either of those questions, you need to ask your manager for a career path meeting. Ideally, this is a one-on-one meeting you’ll have every six months.”

Move up t Move down”Here are four questions to ask your boss to make sure you are growing and developing in the right direction.” by Kevin Kruse Read more:

streetsmartprof‘s insight:

Most of us want to end up in our dream job as our career advances. Granted, some have landed in their dream job immediately out of school, while others will take some time to achieve this.

However, if you don’t know what your dream job is, this makes it difficult for your boss to help you grow in your career.

It is not uncommon for people to be “passed over” when new positions are opened up in the company. Yet if your boss does not know you have any interest in specific types of projects and/or oppertunities, the only one we can blame for being passed over is ourselves.

Net/net, don’t wait for your boss to call a meeting to discuss where you want to end up. Drive your career growth from your end, as much as the boss may and/or should do from their end.

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Tapping the Hidden Jobs Market During Your Search | NYU

“If you attended our seminar last night, you already know that nearly 70% of jobs are found by Tapping the Hidden Job Market.”

“But in case you missed it, here are some tips and tricks for recent graduates looking for a job, current students searching for an internship, or for experienced professionals who are seeking to advance their career.”

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streetsmartprof‘s insight:

Quick concise article which touches on all of the major areas to help unlock the hidden job market.

Such as balancing your job search time based on the fact many jobs are only located by networking. Which implies one should never spend 100% of the time on job boards only. Make sure to also use some quality time for networking efforts.

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Questions for Job Seekers to Ask During an Interview and Some to Avoid

“A job interview is a two-way street. While you need to use it as an opportunity to convince the employer that you are the best candidate for the job, you also need to be convinced that the job and the company would be a great fit for you.”

“So when the tables are turned and you’re invited to ask questions, do it. “Remember that hiring managers appreciate an engaged conversation and value an inquisitive mind,” Taylor says. This may be your best chance to determine whether the job or the company is right for you.” by Jacquelyn Smith

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streetsmartprof‘s insight:

If you are looking for examples of open ended questions to ask during an interview, jump to the bottom of the article.

The intro builds the case as to why you need to come prepared for the end of the interview and the hiring manager says, “Do you have any questions for me?”.

This is a defining moment and it is not the right time to go quiet. Providing you can picture your future dream job in your mind, now is the time to ask questions around what it is you want out of a position, the boss and/or the company.

Many people “wing it” when it comes time to answering questions. Coming in prepared is just another way job seekers rise above the noise and help land the job.

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5 Secrets of Networking for Job Seekers


streetsmartprof‘s insight:

If you are looking for more then a quick article on networking, take some quality time to review this slideshare deck. Yes, it is long, yet it is written as a complete workshop on how to network.

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College Graduates Can Use MOOCs to Help Land A First Job

“With the competitive nature of the job market in general, recent college  graduates may have an experience deficit that shrinks their opportunity to  compete with experienced job seekers.”

“Employers aren’t looking just for a degree. They want to know you are going to  succeed in the job and that they won’t have to be hunting for your replacement  in a few months.”

“How can MOOCs, (massive open online courses), help new college grads land a job?” by Dianna Sadlouskos

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streetsmartprof‘s insight:

Your dream job is based on skill sets you can bring to the table. Yet as a college grad, your skills are mostly around the “what and why”. Not much has been provided in terms of “how” businesses use your skill sets.

Dianna provides numerous sites which provide online classes and the price is definetly right, “free”.

If you have gaps in some of your skill sets, (which we all do), perhaps a few on line classes will provide the edge you need to raise above the noise during the job search.

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