Resisting the Urge to Oversell in Interviews

Written by Scott Brown

An interview is a selling situation. In most cases, you are trying to sellrepparttar interviewer on hiring you forrepparttar 139212 job. In our efforts to present ourselves inrepparttar 139213 best possible light, it's easy to forget that it is actually possible to "oversell" oneself. Most sales experts will tell you that listening torepparttar 139214 customer is more important than talking. Interviews are no exception. It's unfortunate, but selling an interviewer on one of your capabilities could actually hurt you if it's a skill that's not central torepparttar 139215 job.


Most interviewers think in terms of categories. They often view candidates as being one type of employee or another. If you sellrepparttar 139216 interviewer about a strength that they feel would be uncharacteristic ofrepparttar 139217 type of person they're trying to hire, they may eliminate you from consideration. For example, if you're applying for a sales job and you spend a lot of time talking about how great you are at preparing sales reports and organizing your contact database, there is a danger thatrepparttar 139218 interviewer could perceive you as being someone who has good computer skills but is not as aggressive onrepparttar 139219 phone.

Part of how people form their opinions about what someone can or cannot do is based on how similarrepparttar 139220 person is to peoplerepparttar 139221 interviewer knows who are good atrepparttar 139222 job. So they may be comparing you to that person, or to several different people they know who have varying degrees of ability inrepparttar 139223 job. To avoid this problem, it is best to first understand fromrepparttar 139224 interviewer what qualities they are looking for and to address how you possess those qualities specifically, being careful not to put undue emphasis on qualitiesrepparttar 139225 interviewer did not say they were looking for. Another risk with selling a strengthrepparttar 139226 interviewer doesn't consider important is that it can divertrepparttar 139227 conversation away from addressingrepparttar 139228 other strengths you have thatrepparttar 139229 interviewer would find more persuasive.

Achieving Recognition at Work

Written by Scott Brown


There is an employee where I work who whines when she 2 things going on simultaneously. Although her hours are 8:30 -5:00, she shows up anywhere from 9:30 to nearly 2:00, and spends hours on personal phone calls and playing around. Meanwhile, I consistently come in to work at 8:00 and don't leave until 5:00 or even later, often eating lunch at my desk to get even more work done. But somehow she ended up getting a bonus this year when I did not. I don't get it!

- J. S.

Dear J.S.,

I totally understand your frustration!

Working hard alone does not necessarily get you better pay and recognition. A big part of succeeding within most organizations is also playingrepparttar political game. If you work hard butrepparttar 139199 people who matter don't know you're working hard or don't understand what benefit you're providing, it might go unnoticed.

Fromrepparttar 139200 situation you described, I would imagine your co-worker who comes in late is much better at "managing" her managers. Her managers may even think she's doing a great job and that she should be allowed to come in late because she's a "star." Think about it: if you thought you had Michael Jordan on your team, would you let him come in late? Sure! You'd probably also give him a bonus because you wouldn't want to lose him.

Someone who works long hours might just be viewed as a worker bee. And ifrepparttar 139201 important people don't know what benefit you're providing from those long hours of work, they may just think you're inefficient and can't get things done within regular work hours. I know it sounds cruel, but this is howrepparttar 139202 game works in Corporate America.


1. Don't treatrepparttar 139203 job like it's your only hope of success inrepparttar 139204 world. If you treat a job like you're dependent on it and like it's your only chance of success, your bosses will notice and may interpret your earnestness as desperation. If they think you have no other options, they really have no incentive to pay you more money or to give you a bonus. If they thinkrepparttar 139205 job you have now isrepparttar 139206 best you can do, they'll likely take you for granted. You should be generally aware of other job opportunities at all times. I don't mean you need to be aware of specific jobs, but you should have a general idea of what else is available out there.

If you find yourself in a position where there are no other attractive options out there based on your current skills and experience, your #1 priority should be to enhance your skills and/or experience to change that. This may mean taking college classes at night. It might mean volunteering for special projects at work so that you can get experience with a new system or new skill. To accessrepparttar 139207 JobSearchInfo Education and Skills center, visit this web address:

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