Jane and Angie worked at the same company. They both had about 10 years of experience in both inside and outside sales. They were referred to us by a friend of theirs because their company was changing hands and their function was going to be moved to Chicago and neither one of them wanted to relocate.

Both of them had solid experience and a great track record. We just happened to have an organization that was looking to hire two people with the kind of experience and background they exhibited.

We warned both candidates that it wouldn’t be a good idea, even though they both knew they were working with us, to discuss the interviews that they might get. It’s just never really a good idea to discuss, especially with coworkers, the interviews that you go on.

We explained the position to each candidate and began the process for the initial interviews. By my observation, the difference in each candidate’s job preparation played a key role in the overall outcome.

Jane’s Approach: All in Attitude

Seized the Opportunity: She went on the interview as soon as it was available.


  • She was anxious to take our Job Search Solution selected modules for interviewing
    • JSS is our 60 hour tutorial that we offer every candidate with whom we get an interview
    • She practiced the techniques she learned from JSS and even reviewed with us some of the things she should highlight in the interviewing process.
    • She sold herself extremely well with the goal of “getting an offer” and then worrying about whether she wanted the job after she would get the offer. That is exactly the way every candidate ought to do it.
  • She researched the company; even called someone that she knew who worked there to gather further information

Left a Good Impression:

  • She sold her skills extremely well with the goal of “getting an offer” and then worrying about whether she wanted the job after she would get the offer. That is exactly the way every candidate ought to do it. The client was thrilled with Jane.

Angie’s Approach: Reluctant Progression

Lacked Sense of Urgency:

  • She took an extended amount of time to research on the company prior to letting us know if she wanted to go on the interview.
  • Once she decided to interview with the company she stated it would be three or four days before she would be available.
  • Angie ended up interviewing a week after Jane did.

Poor Preparation:

  • We also gave her access to The Job Search Solution and she halfheartedly explained that she may not have time to do it but would try.
  • Spent ample time concerned about the salary rather than focusing on getting a job offer first
  • Tried to rely on her past interviewing successes rather than prepare for this job offer

Left a Satisfactory Impression:

  • Angie did okay on her interviews, but it became clear that she wasn’t going after the job very hard due to her own career interest and failure to prepare well.

All in all, it turned out the job position was much better than either of the candidates imagined and a step up from what they had been doing.

We were fortunate enough to find the client two other really good candidates to interview with. Without surprise, Jane got one of the positions at $10,000 more than what the company said they would pay. They even gave her a signing bonus, which is still pretty rare. The other position went to one of our other candidates, whom also followed the JSS modules.

While Angie did okay on her interviews, she was frustrated not to receive a job offer given here track record was more experienced than Jane’s. We explained, she failed go the extra mile. She took her track record for granted and started making decisions about the job before she even got to the interview, which limited her enthusiasm.

Missed opportunities are hard to overcome and I’ve seen this too often in my recruitment career of 49 plus years. The take away is, take nothing for granted, make no assumptions, prepare and do your best because you have nothing till you have an offer.