“So, why did you leave your last job?” is one of the first questions asked in the interview process.

Has this question been asked of you? Perhaps you were not sure how to answer as you were forced to leave because of a negative situation. You told the interviewer about a business turndown or whatever else seemed to make sense, but you were not sure whether the answer sounded believable or not.

“What was your best achievement in the job you just left?” This follow up question might be easier to answer. You can tell about a particular business achievement. Then you’re asked: “What would you say is your greatest fault?” This question is very precarious. You do not offer a real fault such as: “I have a hard time being on time for appointments.” Further, should you admit that you are a procrastinator, or take the easy road out and state that you don’t have any faults that you can think of at the time? Obviously, these are not good answers.

These tricky questions, and many more clever queries are asked to catch you off guard or to find out about your personality characteristics, habits and attitude.

I’m sure you will agree that poor interviewing can cause the loss of an offer, even though the candidate has everything going for herself/himself. The resume may be good and the individual can be dressed appropriately, but if the answers to the crucial questions are not powerful, to the point, and appropriate, the applicant will not get the offer.

Not only do you need to know how to answer the questions that are asked of you, but you must know how to read what is behind the question and be prepared for anything and everything.

Just as a sports figure has to practice every day, you must as well, if you want to give a perfect performance. You can’t just “wing it.” You know the value of practice, practice and more practice, if you want to sell yourself.

Corporate Executive Services teaches our clients that behind every “sale” is an emotional sale. In other words, it is not good enough for you to read books on interviewing techniques unless you know how to make the answers work for you. This is where so many other career counseling companies and college career counseling services let you down. They don’t teach you to sell yourself using professional sales techniques and further, how to discover what is behind the question that is being asked. Take the “situational interview” for example. You are asked what you would do in a certain situation. There is no pat answer because the interviewer may have only one answer that is appropriate to his or her thinking, and even if your answer is better, that doesn’t matter.

You must also learn to “read” the interviewer. You can put yourself in the place of the interviewer. They are trained to understand body language and response language, and react accordingly in their private counseling sessions.

One of our clients remarked, “I thought I knew how to sell. After all, I’ve been earning my living as a salesperson for the past 12 years. However, I had forgotten one very important thing…that is, to sell myself in the interview. I hadn’t discovered what their objections were, so it was impossible to use my good sales skills to overcome them. I just went home after the interview and waited for the phone call with an offer, which by the way, didn’t come.”

How to professionally communicate is crucial for you to outshine anyone. This sometimes may even compensate for short comings such as a lack of degree or industry experience.

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