One of the attributes of our new Pope, Pope Francis is that of humility… we don’t see a lot of humility in the world today and it made me think how that attribute of is a great lesson for both job seekers as well as hiring authorities…
Often candidates think that when you sell their features and advantages and benefits to a prospective employer they have to be less than humble and that’s not true… you can still be really good at what you do but present in a humble way… and that’s the key
If you are a job candidate and a have particular skills and attributes that have made you successful, it’s imperative you present those to a prospective employer… but the way you do it, with humility, makes all the difference in the world
Prefacing your features/advantages/benefits presentation on yourself with comments like, “I’ve been very fortunate to be blessed with gifts and I’ve tried to hone them…” or “I’m grateful for the attributes God has given me, they have been benefits to the companies that I’ve worked for and would be for your company too…” or “I was a little bit better than average in my accounting skills, but fortunately one of my mentors pushed me as well as disciplined me to carry them to the highest degree…”
Make humility part of your skill set… using words like “fortunate… blessed… grateful” etc. will make all the difference in the world
Most people don’t recognize how many interviews, on average, it takes to get a job… if you ask most people, even professionals, they speculate that it takes four or five initial interviews to get a job offer… well, the truth is that it takes 14… then you read it right… 14…
That’s 14 initial interviews to eventually get an offer that you would like to accept it… this average is based on the 2012 statistics of our recruiting firm… we place professionals in Sales, accounting, engineering, banking, IT… everything except healthcare… the range of these numbers are seven interviews for the people in IT to 18 interviews for people in sales
Most people aren’t aware of just how difficult it is to even get 14 interviews or how long it takes… it could take months… even a year… this number may change as the economy gets better… but you need to be aware of it…
This means that if you were a job candidate you need to take massive action to get interviews… you can’t rely on sending resumes over the Internet, or on friends to help you, or family… you got to pick up the phone and call as many people as possible and get an interview… you got get 14 of them to get a job
…i often talk about the fact that much of the hiring decision is based on the question of “do we like you?”..the answer amounts to 40% of the hiring decision..most hiring authorities won’t admit to this, but they decide this way..
this week the CEO of one of the companies we work with…a $500 million company…started from scratch by the CEO..on its way to $1 billion… shared one of his hiring criteria…he said:
“after we decide we think a candidate can do a good job for us, we ask ourselves ‘would we want to be in the duck blind with this guy..(or gal)’…if our answer is ‘yes’ we are likely to hire the person.’
now, if you have ever hunted ducks for any length of time, you get exactly what the CEO was saying…most of us duck hunters know that the time you spend in a duck blind isn’t shooting ducks..(i wish) it is quietly waiting for them in the rain, sleet, snow and cold…now the folks you are with in the duck blind make a tremendous difference in the success and enjoyment of the hunt…being in a duck blind with someone you really don’t like or don’t want to be around is absolute a-g-o-n-y…it is absolutely a-w-f-u-l…even if you don’t duck hunt, think about the kind of person you’d like to be within one foot of in a dark, cold, wet, rainy 10 ft. by 3 ft. box quietly waiting for ducks for 4 or 5 hours…when the ducks don’t fly, you are gonna talk with the folks in the blind…and what if you don’t like ‘em???
get the picture???…think about it..that is about the quintessential ‘do we like you’ test…’would you want to be in a duck blind with this person’….brilliant!!
so, just know that the folks you are interviewing with are asking themselves and each other, ‘would we want to be in a duck blind with this person?’
I interviewed 10 to 15 professionals week… folks who have anywhere from 5 to 25 years experience in their chosen field… in my face-to-face interview with them, among other things, I asked them if they know what they are selling to a prospective employer… most often I get a blank stare or I get some insane answer like, “the fact that I need a job”… (I won’t even address this!)
I then ask, in a very kind way, again, “what are you selling to a prospective employer?… What makes you a good employee?… What’s going to set you apart from the 23 other folks a hiring authority is going to interview?”
Often, candidates say things like, “well, I’m just a really good employee!” So, I ask, “what makes you a good employee?”… Often they’ll say something like, “well I’m just a hard worker!” It’s clear that most often, even the most experienced candidates really don’t know what they are selling to a prospective employer…
Successful candidates need to be able to qualify and identify specific attributes, performance and track record that set them apart from other candidates… these don’t have to be miraculous, mesmerizing, superhuman feats… they can be simple, straightforward quantifiable facts that show you are a hard worker and a good employee… the best candidates have a 30 second, “elevator pitch” about why they’re a good employee and why they ought to get hired…
So, if you are a job seeker, have you sat down and written out ten or fifteen quantifiable, provable, factual aspects of your history that make you a good employee?
Do you know what you’re selling?