When recruiting candidates, often recruiters neglect to properly prepare their candidates to pre-sell themselves leaving the interview to chance. I would propose it is more powerful to invest the time in preparing the candidate's mindset. Sharing with the candidate that the interview is clearly a selling opportunity and it is their job to do the selling is critical to their interview success and the recruiters financial success. Below is an example of our strategy to powerfully prepare each candidate, senior or junior.

First: Fortunately I am going to be able to get you an interview and I need you to listen to me for a few minutes and please take notes. It is very important that you get this.

Then: We have to realize this is a sales situation. It is crucial that you share enough compelling information about yourself for them to be interested in pursuing you and interested in hiring you.

Then: An interview is not, contrary to popular belief, a two-way street. Our goal together is to place you in a position of choice, where you walk away from each interview in the driver seat and YOU have the option of choosing to go back in to the next round of interviews, right? Undoubtedly, until you have an offer, nothing has really taken place. So it is important you sell yourself just as hard as you can. There are simply so many candidates for a company to interview. For every interview we get you, the Employer is interviewing 15-16 other candidate’s. Our goal together is for the employers to not only remember you, but to also want you back in the next round to pursue you. Does that make Sense? So what I would like to do is take a few minutes to isolate your accomplishments.

Then: First let’s take out a sheet of paper and divide it into three columns. The first column we’ll label Feature. A feature is an accomplishment. For instance, you closed a deal at Army, right. That would be a Feature. The second column will be Advantage. An Advantage is simply the value, the dollar value or percentage of increase, directly tied to the feature. And the third Column is the Benefit. Simply put the benefit is your part in the process that led to the Feature, Advantage and Accomplishment. Does that make sense? I would suggest making a list of the top eight to ten F.A.B. points about your last five years. As you recognize now, the value is twofold, right? Not only do you semantically map your achievements so they are top of mind, but the added benefit is you now can present them concisely and compellingly, right?

Then: Clearly the flow is important. We want to be concise, keeping each F.A.B. to 45 seconds each. Here is an example for you; “while working with Oracle, I closed a $3.2 million deal with Army across twenty bases and three commands that I nurtured from a cold lead to an enterprise deal over eighteen months.

Then: Our goal is to present three F.A.B. (Feature, Advantage, Benefit) points, each last only forty-five seconds, are you with me?

Next: Take your sheet of paper and turn it over. We are now going to create an Interview Platform. Simply put, the platform is an interview process designed to help you control the most compelling information about you, help eliminate the typical reactivity in a traditional interview and most importantly place you in a position to clearly understand the key to success in the position. It is a five point outline:

Next: Point one is the Grabber. The Grabber is designed to assumptively get the Hiring Authority’s attention and it goes like this: “Based on what I know about the position here is why I feel I am a fit for the position.”

Then: Immediately, without pause go to Point Two. This is where you share the three most compelling Feature’s, Advantage’s and Benefit’s you bring to the company. Remember these are concise and compelling, right?

Next: Without pause or segue move to Point Three. These are your business questions. Five to six questions designed to understand the pain and how to be wildly successful in the position.

Then: Point 4 of the Interview Platform we call Personal Questions. The key question to ask the Hiring Authority is, “how did you choose to work with Oracle?” We are looking for a decision making style. If your Hiring Authority say’s, “well, I was looking for an industry leader with a broad technology stack, so I called Oracle and asked for an interview, then your Hiring Authority is an Internal decision maker. She makes her own decisions. If your Hiring Authority says, “I received a call from a Recruiter, the Recruiter shared the opening with me, so I called a few customer’s and asked them their opinion, they were positive. So, I then called an old colleague and he felt positive, and then I decided to interview.” With this knowledge you now know your Hiring Authority is an External decision maker, meaning they will only make decisions with other’s approval. The benefit to you now is you know how to sell yourself each step of the way through the Interview Process, right?

Last: Point 5 is The Close. In an interview the close is critical. We propose there is power in three’s, so we close three times. The first is very soft and is simply closing for fit. “Based on my background and what you are looking for, how do you feel about the fit?” If we get agreement on fit, we close for process. “Can you help me understand when you would like to have someone on board and who else will be involved in the decision making process?” Our final close is for “next step.” “I’m available Tuesday or Wednesday to meet with member of your team, which day works best for you?”

Whether you are primarily in sales recruiting, I.T. recruiting or a hiring authority who is championing a candidate, properly preparing the candidate to interview, is truly excercising cutting edge consulting recruiting. Learn more about our strategies.

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