The Choreography of the Interview

Based on decades of experience and deep industry knowledge as brand marketing and consumer insights recruiters, O’Connell Group shares best practices and useful insights to help you build your career.

Have you ever completed a day of interviewing for a job you really wanted and thought: “The first interview was a little rough, but I hit my stride by the second one…”

What you may not have realized is that the “one rocky interview” may have cost you the offer you should have won.

dancersYou are already good at interviews or you wouldn’t be where you are today. Even so, we hate to see great people who are great candidates lose offers to less talented professionals who simply spent more time preparing for their interviews. We want to do everything we possibly can to help you win this competition.

Understanding the “choreography” of the interview is essential to successful preparation for that “big dance” with your employer of choice. So, let’s start by clearly stating the goals of interviewing so you can focus all your efforts on achieving them.

Your two primary objectives in interviewing:

First: “Sell” yourself – to get an offer. Your mission is clear: at the end of the interview, each person you met should be able to articulate why you are the best person to hire. It is up to you to present that case regardless of the questions they ask.

Second: “Buy” – to get a feel for the company. You want a clear sense of the people, ideas, attitudes, work ethic, marketing philosophy, management style, etc., to help you decide to accept or decline an offer should one be made.

The company’s two primary objectives in the interviewing process:

First: “Buy” – to select the best person for the job.

Second: “Sell” the company – to provide the information you need to appreciate why this is the best career choice for you.

To interview successfully, you must concentrate all of your active focus on your first objective, getting an offer, until you are holding an offer.

Obviously, you will be able to gather significant information about the company at the same time, but your only active priority should be getting the offer. That single-minded focus could be the edge that wins you the offer over another candidate. Think about how disappointing it is to spend your time discovering that you really want to join a company, but then not to get an offer because another candidate concentrated his efforts on convincing the company to hire him/her (even though he/she wasn’t sure he/she would accept an offer). Holding an offer gives you the choice.

Focusing your interview efforts on getting the offer reduces the risk that your questions about the company might get in the way.

At O’Connell Group, we guide our candidates through the interview process from start to finish. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you develop your skills and enhance your future career opportunities.