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Great Moments In Interviewing As a Candidate: The +1 Strategy..

I'm on record as saying that you should let the person interviewing you for a job talk as much as they want.

Basically, it works like this- the more your interviewer talks, the more she's going to feel LIKE IT WENT ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC.   Sure, she talked 90% of the time.  You did the head nod and appeared pliable.  That's the sign of a great hire for most managers!!  Whether they know it or not...

Let them talk if they want to talk - PS, hiring managers- you job is to get your airtime down to 20% of the interview - do more than that and you're just waxing poetic instead of extracting Google+1-buttoninformation.

I'm got another one for the candidates who want to be loved in any interview process - I'll call it the "+1" strategy, and it's designed to take advantage of anything the hiring manager says in the interview.

Your interview is full of opinions and insights coming from the interviewer.  They're trying to build flow.  Your job as a candidate is to use that and build even more momentum.  Here's how you do it:

You hear the interviewer/hiring manager share an opinion or experience they appear to view as positive.  You automatically grab something from your past that shows you've had a similar experience.  That's a +1 strategy.

Non work-related example - Hiring Manager complaining about DMV.  You share your worst DMV experience.  Shared misery +1.

Politics example - Hiring manager complains about Obama.  You're a democrat, so you do what most democrats do - leave Obama alone and go after Hillary (her own email server?  The gall...).  Politics +1, and you hit your own party in a way you can live with.  +1

Work-Related example.  Hiring manager is proud of his Mac, talks trash about IT.  You've never owned a Mac in your life and trust one as much as you trust the French, but you know what to do - ask whether he's getting the iWatch (+1), then move with his answer - if he likes it, you say you're intrigued by it, if he doesn't, talk about lack of functionality, etc.  Another +1.

Common sense?  Sure, but you'd be surprised how many candidates are too uptight to pull it off.

You need +1's - If you didn't come out of the interview with at least 4-5 +1's, you didn't have a good day as a candidate.

FYI - don't try this with me.  You bring that weak stuff with me in an interview, I'll take you down a path of follow up questions designed to "out" you as a +1er.

For everyone else - it's a great strategy.  

Comments

Brian

You're spot on, the +1 is a horrible idea for you, but if I were to thrown on some Nickleback... I agree that if candidates can get over the fear and nerves, it's quite easy to make the interview a conversation versus an inquisition.

Johnny Nyk

I love fois gras and champagne and married a French girl. What's that make me? -27?

Anne

Interesting. I think I got past a phone interview without realizing it based on this. After I hung up the phone, I was sure that I had bombed the phone interview but ended up progressing to the next round and eventually got the job. The interview was for a teaching job and my interviewer had held the position I was applying for previously. During the phone interview I had asked my interviewer "What was your biggest challenge and what did you feel was your key to success during your time teaching" and it totally changed the tone of our conversation. Maybe that's how I got through to the next round...

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