What do hiring managers look for in an interview? This one question has been haunting job applicants for ages. Here is a guide on what do hiring managers look for in an interview.
The Hiring manager expects that an applicant who is invited to an interview will be at his best – both in appearance and behavior. You will have conducted basic research on the company and will be able to both answer and ask questions that relate to your skills and goals as they relate to the job under consideration.
The hiring manager has certain goals he/she must achieve through the interview process. He/She will control many of the variables affecting the interview situation in order to achieve those goals.
First, the interviewer looks for indicators of the applicant’s expertise and competence – your skills, knowledge, and abilities as they relate to the job. Since your education and past work experience are factors that would have been apparent on your resume, you have met the basic requirements for consideration for the position or you wouldn’t have been invited to the interview. But now the employer wants specifics that go beyond the degrees earned, jobs held, and duties performed – specifics that indicate what you can do for the employer in her organization.
Second, the interviewer is interested in indicators of the applicant’s motivation. Expertise is an important consideration, but your drive and energy may be what set you apart from others and give you an edge in the hiring process. The employer wants to know about your development potential. Are you motivated to learn new skills and do new things?
Third, your interpersonal skills also are of concern. Someone who can do the job, but doesn’t fit into the work setting, isn’t a valuable employee. Your ability to get along with co-workers is not always easy to discern, but something the interviewer will be trying to assess. How well do you take supervision? Are you able to follow orders from those in positions to direct you? And if you are hired in a track that may lead to your becoming a supervisor, your leadership skills will also be important.
Fourth, the applicant’s decision-making and problem-solving abilities will be important for many positions. How well are you able to deal with an out-of-the-ordinary situation you may encounter on the job?
Will you be able to distinguish between those situations where innovation is required and those where established procedures must be followed? Can you quickly deal with a situation by analyzing the nature of the issue and taking appropriate action that incorporates alternative courses of action?
Fifth, at the same time that the interviewer is attempting to discern your skills to do the work as well as fit into the corporate structure, she is also trying to assess your real interest in the job and the firm. Do you really want this job? Will you be a dedicated and loyal employee? Or do you merely see this job as a way-station to something bigger and better somewhere else?
Sixth, while you may think employers are mainly concerned with assessing your job performance skills, they also are interested in your personality or likability. They prefer working with people they like. After all, likable people are those who tend to get along well with others, How well do you relate to the interviewer? Do you listen well, give positive verbal and nonverbal feedback, have a pleasant and enthusiastic manner, and demonstrate a sense of humor and smile? Or do you tend to be negative, boring, and unenthusiastic? Employers look for energetic personalities who also tend to transfer their energy into their work.