Best Practices in HR

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  January 1, 1970

How to Interview: Think and Act Like a Consultant

Sick of the same old banter and outcome at interviews? If so, it’s time to change things up.

One effective strategy is to think and interview like a consultant.

Why? This method will make you much more powerful and calmer during the interview process, instead of sitting there hoping they’ll hire you and passively trying to answer the questions correctly so that you’ll win the big prize.

Interviewing like a consultant means taking a step back and asking probing questions while remaining confident in your skills. It shows you’re business savvy and willing to take charge to influence change. Ultimately, it gets noticed and is memorable when it comes to decision time.

An example exercise: Pretend for a minute that you own a small consulting company. When you first meet a prospective client, you’ll probe to better understand the problems that this person is facing. Ask about workflow, competition, sales hurdles, etc.

At the same time, you are also there to sell your consultant company. Therefore, as they talk about company problems, you reveal your own company’s experience and credentials by asking questions or by explaining how you have handled similar situations.

If the conversation goes astray, as a consultant you would lead it back to the topics on your 3-by-5-card, the work you would do for them and your abilities. That way, you can make your points in context.

A consultant reassures the hiring manager that everything will work out. By doing this, you’ll display self-confidence in your ability to handle the position. If you are not confident, why should the hiring manager take a chance on you? If you want the job, take a stand and say that you believe it will work.

This mentality can change an average interviewer into a savvy smart-talking superhero! By adopting a consultative mindset, you can probe to really understand what’s going on so you can figure out the kind of solutions they need. And that’s what will lead you to hear “You’re hired!”

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