The Job Interview

If you’re reading this whilst out of work or you know someone (especially a young person) who is looking for work please pass it on. In our outplacement work we have found these to be significant drivers in peoples’ success rate when attending the job interview*.


Use These Phrases At The Appropriate Time

I am very aware of what your organisation does.
Make sure you can back this up. Talk compellingly about their products and services, who are their major customers, what might their pain points be, how are they using social networking. Demonstrate you have done proper homework. Going to their web site is compulsory, but try to see behind the content every other candidate will have done the same.

I am a hard worker and always try to be a positive influence.
Employers want people who will make an effort, not just to do the job but who make a difference to those around them. Make sure you cover being a team player. Don’t be somebody who just does what they’re told, be someone who does what it takes. Have evidence ready.

I like change.
You are implicitly saying you are flexible, but explicitly showing that you can adapt even help implement change. Have examples ready to talk about.


I have the experience/skills/mind-set you are looking for.
This shows you have read the advertisement/job profile/application form and explored what it is the employer requires. Depending on your own background and age emphasise accordingly, i.e. the younger you are focus more on skills and mind-set, the older focus on all three.

I understand what motivates me and (if relevant) how to effectively motivate others.
Can you make a difference to your own and to others performance? When talking on this subject the person interviewing you will be hooked on to what you say. Make sure it’s interesting.

I’m passionate about my learning and increasing my expertise.
This one is tricky if it isn’t true, because you can’t swot up in advance. You are going to have to show how you keep your learning curve as vertical as you can.

I will be successful in this job because…..
Try to prep this answer because you don’t want to be making this up from scratch. Don’t waffle, stay focused.

* Usual rules still apply about demonstrating professionalism etc.