This is why recruiters and hiring managers get frustrated with candidates. For the most part this demonstrates why most candidates fail the interview. Candidates leave an interview thinking all went well, when in fact, the candidate is not going to be asked to come back.
It also demonstrates why candidates need to consider investing in their job search. There are many great resources available to ensure candidates conduct a really effective and professional job search. In today’s economy a job seeker can’t afford (literally) to be anything less than 100% effective. Unfortunately, none of these 10 will get the job. If they had invested less than $100, I believe they could have properly answered these simple questions.
Instead they will spend more time looking, ultimately costing them thousands of dollars. Who knows when another opportunity will come up.
So here are the two simple questions I asked the senior executives.
1) Do you consider yourself to be a person who demonstrates high initiative on a regular basis? All 10 basically answered, “Absolutely.” Not just “yes” but “absolutely.”
The obvious follow-up question to me is:
2) Can you give me a specific example where you demonstrated high initiative in your current or most recent role? This is where the interview collapsed. Not one could give me an example of high initiative. All 10 either rambled on and on hoping I would forget the question or the example was what I would normally expect them to be doing as part of their job. Not HIGH initiative. Not one could provide an example of something they claim to do on a regular basis.
Basically they were not prepared. They all answered positively expecting that to be the end of it.
If they claim to “absolutely” demonstrate high initiative on a regular basis, I would expect them to have at least one example. That doesn’t seem like a trick question to me.
Why these candidates were not able to answer this simple question is beyond me. I can only think, like many candidates, they thought, “I will just wing it.” Proper preparation isn’t all that important. The key word is, “proper.” They may have prepared, but obviously not the right or effective way.
I wonder how many times a day a candidate blows the interview or a candidate’s resume gets screened out for something simple. How many candidates are still searching only because they refused to invest in their job search. In the same way, many people invest in anything they want to become proficient at, including piano lessons, golf lessons, tennis lessons, lessons to learn a software program, etc. investing in a job search is just as critical. I believe a lot more critical.
Every extra day in a job search is costing these people thousands.
So what can you do so it doesn’t happen to you:
1) The internet offers an endless amount of free resources for all to tap into.
2) Not all resources are right for every person. Some may be more appropriate for technical people, some for non-professionals or for professionals, and some are primarily focused at managers and above. Search until you find a resource that fits your needs. Like most things job search resources are not one-size-fits-all.
3) Once you find a resource take full advantage of the free offerings. Read the blog articles, listen to any audio files, if the offer free webinars attend them. Use these free resources to the fullest extent you can.
4) Only after you trust them and recognize they are right for you, don’t be afraid to invest a few bucks. Nobody can possibly give away everything for free. They have to make a living too. Since you have already engaged them and trust them purchasing a book, CD,or attending a paid webinar will be worth every penny. Many won’t even charge you until you are completely satisfied or offer a money back guarantee. That takes away any risk of wasting money.
5) Seek their help with your resume or interviewing skills. Many will give you a first pass for free. Again, if you trust them investing a few bucks may make the difference between getting a job and not getting a job. I know it would have helped these ten people.
The best thing you can do for your job search is to make sure you don’t lose an opportunity because of a simple mistake. In this economy it may be a while before another opportunity comes along.
To practice what we preach, we offer an enormous amount of free resources for you to take full advantage of. I encourage you to use these resources as often as you like and to their fullest extent. For example:
1) Our extensive audio library recordings from our weekly radio program on www. latalkradio.com CLICK HERE to review the program listing.
2) Our FREE sample cover letter. Over 2000 people have downloaded this. CLICK HERE to download yours.
3) Our FREE Linkedin profile assessment. Build a great profile on Linkedin. CLICK HERE to download yours.
4) Over 4000 people have joined our Linkedin Job Search Networking Group. CLICK HERE to join.
5) Download a free chapter from our job search book on phone interviewing tips. CLICK HERE to download.
6) These are just a few of the free offerings on our website. There are many more for you to take advantage of without buying anything.
FULL DISCLOSURE. Yes, there are products to buy on these pages. If this is your first time you should check out the free stuff first. If those are helpful and you still need help then you can check out the products. We offer most of them on a free trial basis. You don’t have to buy anything until you are sure it will help you.
We want to be a resource for you in your job search. Our goal is the same as yours. We want to help you spend as little time in a job search as possible.
I welcome your thoughts and comments.