Developing a Tool Kit for your Job Interview

Developing a Tool Kit for your Job Interview

In the most recent blog, I likened job interviewing to dating. If we continue with that analogy, how would you get ready for a first date?

You would clean up good, look your best, plan the date out…Your preparation for the job interview should be far more comprehensive than for a first date, yet so many people go into interviews with little to no preparation.

## Develop a Tool Kit

Your preparation for the job interview should include developing a “took kit” of ten stories you would like to use in the interview.

These stories can be from various areas of your life, but most of them should be work-related.

I suggest that you write these stories out and then practice them in front of the mirror, with friends, or better yet, with an interview coach such as myself.

Behavioral Interviews

These stories will prepare you well for the behavioral questions many (if not most) employers ask during an interview.

These questions are based on the premise that past behavior is the best predictor of future success, and sound something like this: “Tell me about a situation…” or “Tell me about a time when…”

These questions really separate the prepared candidates from the unprepared, because it is very difficult to “wing” these types of questions.

In my experience, unprepared candidates tend to give general answers to these questions, such as “I’ve always been…” or they speak hypothetically, such as “When you’re in that situation, you want to…”

Needless to say, these types of responses do not help your candidacy.

Why Stories?

There are two compelling reasons to utilize stories in your interview.

One, they support your answer better than a general or hypothetical response;

Two, the interviewer will remember those stories– it’s how our brains are wired.

## Using the CAR Format

Challenge: What was your task, and what was the context in which this happened?

Action: What steps did you take to solve this challenge?

Results: What was the outcome of the steps you took?

Typically, each story in your tool kit could be used for multiple questions that an employer might ask, so ten stories gives you a wealth of examples to help you navigate the interview effectively.

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