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The Most Asked Interview Question

April 18, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 252

Tell me about yourself?

This is the most asked question at interview and yet it leaves the majority of people I speak to lost for words.

How can that be? The person you know best in the world is yourself. It must be easy to talk for hours on such a subject; mustn't it?

That is actually part of the problem. When asked such a seemingly simple question, where you have so much to say, it's easy to get confused as to what to choose.

Which things are going to impress them?

How can you make yourself sound good enough for this job?

What are they really asking you?

What's the subtext?

I've recently written a book and marketing agencies don't just want the title. They want the subtext too. A title doesn't say enough.

Sometimes, that is also true of a request.

With such a general interview question, isn't that what would help you too? Knowing the subtext

So what does the interviewer mean when they say: 'tell me about yourself?'

What is it that they really want to know?

Should you tell them about your pet hamster; your love of pickled gherkins; that funny story that had your colleagues in stitches..

Do they want you to talk for twenty minutes? Or just two? What if the interviewer's eyes start to glaze over; is that an indication that you've said enough? What if you haven't got to the punchline yet? What if they still don't know about your proudest moment; your greatest achievement?

Actually, it's quite easy... What they really want, is to know about you in context to what you can do for them.

This is actually a great answer to think about, plan and rehearse ahead of time. Most interviewers ask it, or something similar, so this would be the one question you need to expect.

  1. Read through the vacancy
  2. Highlight the key requirements
  3. Now think about your experience; where does it match?
  4. Write a short paragraph, talking about yourself - relate your experience to this requirement
  5. Once you are happy, read it aloud
  6. Rehearse until you're word perfect, you don't need your piece of paper and you sound both natural and conversational

There is an added benefit to doing this exercise. This is a question an interviewer asks at the beginning. Knowing you have the answer and not feeling flustered and tongue-tied will improve your overall interview performance no end.

Try it. Let me know below how you get on...

Do interviews worry (or even frighten) you? Are you good at what you do, but find it hard to put that across in an interview situation? Is it sometimes difficult to even sound like you know what you're talking about, you get so nervous? Do you just wish you were more relaxed and felt confident?

There's nothing wrong with you. Most people have felt like you do at some point; interviews can be terrifying! Knowing a few key things can now make them easy.

Churchill Brook are your job search experts. We run a range of webinars as well as providing audio and video courses to help you get 'job search fit' and secure that new role. We take you from the initial stages of job search: finding that vacancy, through; creating your attention grabbing application (including CV and covering letter); acing the interview so that you get the job offer, to; negotiating the best package.

Source: EzineArticles
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