You may not be used to talking about yourself, much less selling yourself – but that’s exactly what you need to do in order to succeed during a job interview. Remember: an interviewer’s job is to choose the best candidate for a position. So, they’re looking for whatever it is that makes you stand out from the competition.
The good news is: you can learn to sell yourself in a way that remains authentic. In a nutshell, you need to find your unique selling points, and then head into your interview thinking like a marketer.
What Sets You Apart?
Understand what your key strengths are and be able to communicate them in a concise, compelling way. Convey how you – versus anyone else – could benefit the company if hired.
- Do your research. Understand your target audience: your interviewers and on a wider scale, the company itself. Know what they need. How can you help solve their problems or make their life easier?
- Take a good look at the job description. Which of the leading requirements do you meet with the skills you bring to the table? Sometimes, it can be difficult to objectively analyze yourself. This is when a trusted mentor or career coach can help with feedback on what you should emphasize.
- Perfect your message points. Based on your research, you should have a good sense of what they are. Frame them so you can communicate them concisely and powerfully. This is especially important if you consider yourself modest or uncomfortable about selling yourself. Think about your approach and the language that will be most natural for you.
- Write it down. Sit down and make a list of your top selling points. These can be areas of expertise, key accomplishments, education or training, soft skills or personality traits. For each of them, write a supporting proof statement: a brief example of how you have successfully demonstrated this strength in the past.
- Practice until it feels natural. Just as you would rehearse for an important speech or a big performance, practice for your interview. This can feel awkward at first, but it’s better to feel this way now than when you arrive on site. It allows you to work out any kinks beforehand, so it’s well worth it.
- You’re selling your personal brand. Uncover your unique selling points and be ready to deliver them. Set yourself apart – like FedEx: “when your package absolutely, positively has to get there overnight” or M&M’s: “melts in your mouth, not in your hand.”
Do you need additional help in learning to sell yourself and perfect your job search strategy, from A to Z? If so, consider partnering with an experienced career consultant from TRC Professional Solutions. Contact us today to get started.