Not knowing at the end of your interview if you got the job or not is unbearable. Even a stern no might seem preferable to uncertainty in that moment. Yet if you fail to ask the right questions, you’ll be left wondering if the job is actually yours.
Ask If Your Skills Meet the Qualifications
Don’t leave this as an unknown variable. You may feel you meet the qualifications while your interviewer might not. Asking “do you feel my skills meet your minimum qualifications,” clears the air and allows your interviewer to be candid.
Counterpoints only work if you know what’s worrying your interviewer. Lacking a “preferred” technical skill can be countered when you prove your ability to learn quickly, being “too junior” can be countered by proof of your exceptional problem solving, and being “too senior” can be countered by your commitment to the company’s vision or 5 year plan.
Remember: most objections can be overcome.
Asking for What You’re Worth
One of the most dreaded questions in an interview is “what is your expected salary?” Talking money too early makes it easier for employers to dismiss you. However, there’s a way for you to turn the tables in your favor.
When talking about your salary expectations, reverse the question. One technique that has worked for many of our candidates is:
“I’m looking to make what I’m worth on the local job market. What do you think someone with my skills is worth?”
The question reveals if the interviewer’s company is willing to pay what you know (through meticulous market research) your talents are worth. That way, when it comes down to salary negotiations, both parties have their hands on the table, giving you a much stronger bargaining chip.
Asking for the Job
A good salesperson asks for the sale. All throughout conversation, he or she plants the seed of the sale and candidates are no different.
However, it’s not a blunt process. Asking for the job should never feel like strong-arm tactics. You’re strategically building upon what you’ve already said. Want ways to ask for the sale?
“I think I have a lot to offer to your company and I look forward to working with your team. Is there anything that would keep you from hiring me?
“I’m positive that I want this job. What else can I do to convince you I’m the right person for this role?”
“I’m excited by the idea of working for your company. It’ll really utilize my skills with “x” and “y.” What’ is the next step in the process?”
In every instance, you reassert that you want the job and you put the ball in the employer’s court. Moreover, you give your interviewer a window to provide some feedback. Through their response, whether overt or subtle, you’ll have a good idea as to whether you earned the job or not.
by James Walsh