Monday, November 17, 2014

The "You Statement" and the most important two minutes of your job interview.

Without fail, during your next interview, the hiring manager will say; 
So, tell me about yourself. 
OK, so you know they will ask this question. There is NO WAY they won't ask you this. Its almost like cheating. You know this questions is coming. When you hear it come out of his mouth, inside you smile because you have inside information. You knew.
If that is the case (and I do believe that to be the case), why do so many interview candidates blow it when asked this? Allow me to help.
In my view, this is the most critical point of your interview. This is your chance to really impress. The next two minutes can change your life! I just can’t stress enough how important it is to answer this question correctly. I refer to your answer as the “You Statement”.

Your “You Statement” should include:

No Problem
 -A brief personal history  

 -A brief work history

 -A brief educational history

 -Why you want this position

 -Why you are qualified for the position

 -Energy and enthusiasm

 -Eye contact

 -A smile

 -An open posture



Your “You Statement” should not include:

 -Negative statements

 -Poor speech (ums, like, you know…)



 -Soft talking

 -Long-winded details

 -A closed posture


Your “You Statement” should be rehearsed. You should know well in advance how you will answer this most important question. You should practice this and be able to deliver this “You Statement” with ease and confidence. Even though you may rehearse your answer, you will want to deliver your answer in a way that seems natural. It’s ok to pause for a few seconds before answering to demonstrate that you are thinking about your reply. It is also recommended to insert a few strategic pauses into your statement as well – this also demonstrates a thoughtful reply. 

I also believe you should keep your reply to less than two minutes in length. I have interviewed many long-winded candidates that just turned me off with their long reply. There is a fine line between informing someone and boring someone. A long reply can bore and annoy. Being able to make a point quickly is a very desirable trait that you can demonstrate while delivering your "You Statement."

2 Minutes!

Richard Bolles wrote in his best-selling Job-Hunting guide What Color is Your Parachute? that you are most likely to get hired if you talk half the time and the interviewer talks half the time. On the other hand, if you talk 90 percent of the time, or if the interviewer talks 90 percent of the time, things are not likely to go so well for you. Sound advice.
Be prepared to “hit one over the fence” when asked this question. Think about your answer. Time it. Practice it. Record yourself saying it and listen to yourself.  This will be the most important two minutes of your interview and if executed properly, could change your life!
Interview Tutor
Professional Career Services
Worcester, MA

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