Each year around January 1 thousands of people make a New Year resolution to find another job…or take a different approach to their current job hunt. Either way, dealing with the job interviewers and the games some of them will play make securing the job of choice a huge challenge.
Over the past few years I have been in front of a number of job interviewers. What makes my situation a bit different than many people’s is I am overly trained and experience in HR labor negations. My experience of being in the Job Interviewer’s chair can sometimes make the person interviewing me very uncomfortable.
Nonetheless, knowing what I know about what job interviews will do to disqualify someone is something I thought I would share with others who are out looking to offer their talents and experience to another business.
Many times there is a need to bring to the interviewers attention…or ‘Calling Them Out’ on… a statement they make that could be a way to disqualify you from being considered for the position. A high percentages of interviews will use a negative approach tactic to see how you react. Here are a few I have recently encountered and some suggestion I offer to ‘Calling Them Out’.
Don’t Want You
The toughest obstacle to overcome..and sometimes is impossible to overcome…is the interviewer who has already made their mind up on someone else for the position or just does not want you for the position. This is the most frustrating part of the job hunt. However, take this as a opportunity to practice your ‘Call Out’.
There are many times an interviewer has already determined they don’t want you but instead of telling you that before the interview will go through the interview process so they can document the process with their legal group or a government agency.
Many times it is a “quota” of interviews they have to meet and you fell on a slow day. Whatever the reason you will easily pick up on if the interviewer is just going through the motions.
They will say things like, “I really don’t see on your resume the needed experience..or education..or background…for the position we have open.’ They will say this even if there are a long list of relevant position your have held.
The most used statement usually goes like… “We have received a large number of applicants for this position that have much more experience ….education …background..etc.”
In this struggling economy and job market this is more than likely true. Here is where most job applicants will make it easy on the interviewer and say “I understand. Thank you for your time.”
In some situations exiting immediately could be the best thing to do. However, this could be a test, so take the opportunity to practice your ‘Call Out’ technique. What have you got to lose but two minutes?
The ‘Call Out’ here is to reply with saying something like, “I understand this could be the case but I would assume you saw where my problem solving abilities (or some other relevant experience that you feel would be of benefit to their company) would be of benefit.”
This could get things back on track or, at the very least, show the interviewers you are there for ‘The Job’. Depending on the interviewers remarks will depend on the next step.
If the interviewer continues the conversation, follow along. If they just smile and offer their hand with saying “Thanks for stopping by.”. Cordially thank them for their time.
Either way, don’t develop a negative attitude. It could be you ‘Calling Them Out’ resulted in them going back to talk to their Boss about reevaluating their opinion. If not, at least you went down fighting.
Not a Fit
The ‘Don’t See How You Would Fit’ statement is the new, ‘You’re Too Old…Too Experience” statement many interviewers have been told by their HR or Legal counsel to use to keep from getting sued. The ‘Call Out’ for this statement takes a bit more experience, but not to be avoided. Again, this could be a test to see if you will stand up to your principals.
To determine the ‘Call Out’ to use you have to understand their fears.
Many companies owned and ran by the under 35 business owners feel someone with more experience…or older… will override their authority. Most feel anyone a few years older will bring their younger…hipper…carefree workforce down.
The ‘Nobody wants to work with their Grandfather’ remark has been offer to me as an explanation on their ‘Not a Fit’ statement.
Many of the newer companies passing their third or four year out of the ‘Start-Up’ phase have this vision of establishing a work environment like Google or Facebook where the workforce is all very young and manipulative. These companies have a strong feeling any applicants over 40 ..or 50… would not tolerate how the business is run resulting in a morale problem.
However, these companies with these type of loose work environment usually realize they are not accomplishing their business’ mission and need to show to their consumers, clients or investors they are serious about their future. Hiring someone who has worked under fire or has problem solving skills based on experience is to their advantage. The fear is hiring someone who will take the ‘Fun’ out of the job.
Nonetheless, this “Don’t Fit’ statement needs to be ‘Called Out’.
The ‘Call Out’ could be something as simple as saying… ‘I realize you have developed a very fun workplace atmosphere. That is the main reason I applied. However, I am sure my experience in problem solving and innovative thinking would be beneficial to your business’ success.’
Or a tougher ‘Call Out’ would be to say…”I understand my background and work experience covers a vast number of years. How I see I fit is in providing your company my experience in problem solving and innovative thinking every business at some point will need.”
The walls Job Interviewers throw up to either keep people out are sometimes tests. Then again, they can be foolish attempts to be polite in letting an applicate down. It sometimes is very hard to tell their intensions so ‘Calling Them Out’ works as a way to determine if it is a wall or a Test.
There are as many savvy job interviewers as there are experience job seekers. It is easy for the job recruiting to become a game interviewers will play. To combat the game playing…don’t rollover too easily during the interview.
Let me know how I can help.