Interview Tip – How To Close Your Future Employer
So you are nearing the end of the interview. You feel that it may have gone well, you feel that they may want to offer. It’s tempting at this point to keep it all polite, not rock the boat, get out of there cleanly before you say something that could stop this.
Time to step up
I promise you, now is the time to step up, not just smile and walk away. Now is the time for you to actively close your interviewer, pro-actively try and progress to the next stage, whether that be an offer or an invite to come back in for a second stage. Ask ‘do you have any reservations about my profile or anything that we have covered today?’ It’s quite possible that the interviewer will say ‘no’ to this, but that should not be the end of it. Definitely worth asking the same question again, but in different ways. For example, you could follow up with ‘ is there anything that would prevent you from offering / inviting me back in?’
If they give you reservations, there can be the temptation to get defensive and go straight back with a statement that gives a more positive appraisal of the situation. This is often the natural response, it is combative in style and may not serve you well. Much better to acknowledge their reservation first. For example, you could say ‘yes, I can see why you may have picked that up and why it is important for you to have X. When I was working at Y… [give example of what they want to see]. Note that the structure here is YES AND, not YES BUT. Again we want to work with the interview not argue with them.
Follow up with ‘what are the next steps from here?’ It’s standard business practice to agree actions on the back of having a meeting and your interview should be no different.
It’s important when asking for feedback that you ask in a genuinely curious way as this will draw the feedback out from the interviewer. The easiest way to do this is to actually feel curious, to actually want to know what you could improve on, in either your style or in how you have presented your content. It’s through implementing feedback that you will master interviews so if an interviewer is willing to give you feedback this is something you should be grateful for. We see a lot of candidates who struggle with constructive feedback, but this is insane when constructive feedback is your most effective route forward.
Sales and recruitment
Remember all of the above is even more important if you are going for a role in sales or recruitment. Fundamentally within these roles, you will end up meeting people, to sell them something and will then need to close. In the case of the interview you are selling yourself, and what better way to show that you are the type of person who asks for the business than to ask them! Looking at it this way, you don’t deserve to get an offer for a sales or recruitment role, if you are not willing to close your interviewer. May sound harsh, but it’s true.
This is an approach that you should use, even if you feel the interview hasn’t gone so well. After all, if you are not going to get an offer from the firm, you may as well get as much value from the experience as you can, and the only real value left is to get some quality interview feedback. We all know that it may be hard to get this once you have walked away, so step up, look your interviewer in the eye and ask. You can only gain from this approach.
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