I am currently interviewing for various sales positions in different businesses and it’s always the same.
Interviewer: “Where have you worked before in sales?”
Me: “You mean besides retail? Nowhere”
I: “What is your biggest weakness?”
M: “Do I have to answer this?”
I: “Why do you think you would be an asset here?”
M: “I honestly don’t even know what you do, I just need a job”
I: “We’ll be in touch”
M: “Does that mean I have the job? And will you contact me or should I nervously call and email you in the next week looking for my rejection note?”
So…to avoid this type on interaction, over and over, I decided to search the web and Pin everything I can on my Be Professional board. This includes all little fluff-filled articles like “7 Cliches to Avoid for the Perfect Resume” and “5 Public Speaking Tips that will Prepare you for Any Interview“.
As much fun as these articles are, they give you the same grouping of obvious advice:
- Firm hand-shake
- Look them in the eye
- Don’t say “um”
- Be confident
And then it gives advice like this:
- Bridge the gap between confidence and enthusiasm (like what is this?!)
- Be a team player (no, I want to win! I want this job! Plus, it is an individual interview!)
- Practice your answers before hand (like who knew you were going to be asked why you are passionate about selling email to companies…and who’s excited about that anyway?!)
- Bring ideas to the table (Ideas? What ideas? I don’t even remember the name of the company I am interview for, let alone ideas of how to improve them!)
My point is, preparation is key. Articles on “how to land your dream job” are not going to be relevant if you are not prepared. Know the company, smile, dress appropriately, and pretend you have some sort of an idea of what you’re doing even though no one does.
…oh shoot, I have just become one of “those” articles…ignore everything I have just said.