Editor's Note: This post was originally published March 2018 and has recently been updated and revised for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
A lot of effort and preparation go into making a job interview a success. You have to present yourself as polished in your professional appearance and responses to questions. Interviewees must show off their enthusiasm for taking on a new position and explain clearly how their past education and experience have prepared them for the responsibilities ahead.
To really close the deal, however, you have to go beyond demonstrating you're a motivated job-seeker. Rather, it's important to show an interviewer just how an organization would benefit from having you as an employee. Revealing your abilities as a problem-solver and discussing precisely how you would apply those skills to relevant issues within the business are the most powerful ways to argue that you're the ideal person for the position.
Researching an Organization's Most Urgent Challenges
"The more you know about a potential employer, the better you can address its problems."
Before you walk into any interview, it's crucial to do your homework. The more you know about a potential employer, the better you can understand the types of problems that individual employees and the organization as a whole face on a daily basis. Researching a company and the market where it operates can prove highly revealing and help you to walk into the office ready to answer tough questions.
Get to know an organization's areas of expertise and culture by looking at the corporate website, social media pages and coverage in the press. When you have a clear perspective on a company's values and mission, you gain a stronger sense of what issues leadership is likely to prioritize. For instance, a company that's focused on customer service needs to find ways to keep the public happy with its products or services and encourage individuals to spread positive word-of-mouth.
Looking at the competitive landscape will tell you how a business stands in relation to others in the same space and how leaders are striving to distinguish their offerings. Recent initiatives undertaken by these other companies may have a big influence on policy or strategy moving forward. By taking into account any information you can discover about how a company is performing financially and its plans for growth, you may gain insight into some of its most urgent problems.
Consider how you might apply your own skills and background to resolving those issues and finding fresh opportunities in the current market. Get ready for the interview by thinking about how you might apply what you've learned and done in past jobs to the challenges currently confronting your prospective employer.
Conveying Your Problem Solving Bona Fides
After you've thoroughly investigated a company's culture and problems, the next step is to take what you've learned into the room for your interview. Over the course of the conversation, prioritize articulating the way you handle tough challenges and how you could apply your approach in a new role.
One way to build a narrative around your problem-solving abilities is by giving perceptive, confident answers to the interviewer's questions. You might be asked about a challenging incident you had to handle in the past or about how you might respond to a conflict in your new position. Respond by discussing specific examples of times that you managed a problem successfully, emphasizing your process for reasoning through to a solution.
Asking good questions is another way to convince an interviewer that you are ready and eager to meet the difficulties that go along with a job. When you seem genuinely curious about the specifics of the industry and the company's plans, it shows a desire to get involved in those processes. You may be able to establish strong connections between your narrative about your own problem-solving skills and a company's current undertakings.
Seize your chances to show off your problem-solving skills in an interview.
Learn Skills to be Better in the Interview and On the Job
Solving any problem is about thoughtful planning and preparation. The right training can make all the difference in how you perform during an important interview and achieving long-term professional success.
Programs from New Horizons Career Development Solutions will teach you the principles and techniques that drive a successful career. With advanced training in areas like communication, emotional intelligence and time management, you'll be in a position to ace any interview and take on many of the most pressing challenges in the workplace. Being able to address problems with confidence and explain your reasoning clearly to others are essential skills for anyone who hopes to take on a leadership role. Contact Us for a Free Career Assessment/
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