And Why Should We Hire You?

When I interview job applicants, my favorite question is this: Why should we hire you?
This is a very common question, but the applicant’s reply to this could make or break his chances of employment.
To those who have been looking for a job for quite some time, this question would no longer come as a surprise. In fact, they may be expecting this question already and have prepared their “best response.” However, for the fresh graduates and those who are neophytes at job hunting, you should anticipate that this question would be asked during the interview.
This question demands an answer that would focus on your achievements and credentials. Your response will give the interviewer basis on whether to hire you or not.
So, when you’re asked this question during your job interview, here are a few tips:
What works:
Enumerate the appropriate skills you possess that may be needed for the position. You may say that you have good communication skills, you have expertise in certain computer applications, you are knowledgeable in operating machines, and the like. You may also capitalize on the reputation of your previous company if it is noted for getting top notch talent.
Point out that you have a lot of related experiences, especially if your previous work experience is the same as the one you are applying for. You could emphasize that you are already trained to do the job.
Stress that your personality type matches the job requirement. Read and re-read the company’s want ads, and use this to highlight your qualifications that are best suited for the position. If you are a people-person, could work well in a team, energetic and follows directions well, incorporate these in your response.
Talk about your education. Especially if you are a fresh graduate, it is important that you give emphasis to the skills and knowledge you have acquired from your school, which the company may deem relevant. This is especially true if the course you took up is a perfect fit to the position you are applying for.
Give testimonials and supportive referrals. You may say that your former boss has always commended you as a hardworking, smart employee. You may also state that your colleagues and co-workers find you easy to get along with. This would contribute to the positive mood in the work environment.
State your achievements. You may mention about a company problem you have previously solved, or a program you have launched which increased the company’s profit. You may also cite projects that you were appointed as group leader and how you contributed to its success.
What doesn’t work:
Refrain from saying the usual statement “I can be an asset to your company.” This sounds good, but is so common and vague that it would not make a mark to the interviewer. Expound by enumerating your talents instead. The interviewer probably has heard this answer a million times already, so think of unique statements that would make you stand-out.
Do not say that you needed the job very badly. Never say this, because hiring managers are usually looking for employees who can contribute to their company, and not the other way around. In fact, you may be rejected if the interviewer thinks that your financial problems can tempt you to be dishonest or affect your work performance.
Never talk too much. The interviewer may think that you are bragging. Also do not overindulge, as this might make an impression that you are arrogant. You may also say something that does not agree with the interviewer.
Do not say “because I am the best”. This might just displease the interviewer. You may be the most qualified for the post, but it is not the proper way of saying it to the hiring officer. Prove that you are the best by just saying things that would back-up your claims.
“Why should we hire you?” is a question that would be asked to almost all the job applicants. Prepare the best answer for you to shine among the rest of the pack. Take time to know what you can bring to the company. Think smart, and answer in the most enthusiastic manner you can. Knowing why the company should hire you is the essence of the whole interview. Take this chance to sell yourself.
*Originally published by the Manila Bulletin. Written by Ruben Anlacan, Jr. (President, BusinessCoach, Inc.) All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or copied without express written permission of the copyright holders.
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