Recent blog posts

The 4 Levels Of Communicating How Good You Are In A Job Interview (From Least To Most Impressive)

 1)  Most Basic Level:  People Who Talk About Their Qualities And Capabilities

During a job interview, many people like to highlight their strongest qualities and capabilities.  They’ll claim to be a fast learner, persistent, or a hard worker, or say they’re a good communicator or team leader.

 For a fresh university graduate with little or no work experience, this is okay, since your potential and what will allow you to be successful are pretty much all you have to talk about.

 The Problem With Doing Only This

However, if you already have some work experience, then experienced interviewers will wonder why you’re not talking about what you can actually do.  Your actual work experience is what distinguishes you from fresh university graduates.

 2)  More Revealing Level:  People Who Talk About Their Work Experience

Your actual work experience is a much more tangible indicator of your capabilities to an interviewer.  As a result, always talk about your outstanding qualities and capabilities in the context of describing what you can do.

 The Problem With Doing Only This

However, experienced interviewers know that just because you've done something for a long time doesn't mean you do it well.  Think of the people you know who have been doing a job for a while, but who are only so-so or average at what they do?  Top employers want very good to excellent people, not so-so or average.

 3)  More Impressive Level:  People Who Talk About Impressive Achievements

If you want to convey to others how well you can do something, then talk about your achievements. Think of them as the proof of what you can do.  Of course, the more impressive they are the better. 

For instance, I've interviewed many candidates with impressive degrees, certificates, company names, and years of experience.  But when you ask them to share their most impressive achievements, the examples they give are unimpressive. 

Then there are candidates from 2nd tier schools and lesser known companies who have generated bigger results, led bigger teams, or built new processes.  So while I may have originally thought the candidate with more qualifications would be better, I’ll pick the one with the more impressive achievements.  Top companies and experienced executives think the same way. 

The Problem With Doing Only This

However, even listening to someone talk about their achievements can be misleading.  There are smart people out there who can sound like they've done something impressive, but actually, have only supported, participated in, or observed someone else do it.  Or their achievements were largely the result of a company process or team they were a part of.  Or were achieved at a hot time in the market or when the competition wasn't very strong yet.  They’re very familiar with what should actually happen, but haven’t actually led or managed the situation themselves. 

4)  “We’d Like To Hire You!” Level:  People Who Can Tell You How They Achieve Impressive Results

This is why the most impressive candidates are the ones that can not only share impressive achievements with you, but who can also tell you exactly how they achieved the result.  They can tell you exactly how they do it, and tell you instantly, fluently, and without hesitation. 

They can explain things to you in this way because they've gone through it first-hand.  They've spent dozens if not hundreds of hours thinking about, understanding, and figuring out how to do it well.  And they've spent hundreds if not thousands of hours actually doing and executing it.  In fact, they can not only tell you why they did it a certain way, but why they didn't do it another way.  When you finish listening to them, you just think to yourself, “Wow, that’s impressive!”

To experienced executives and interviewers I know, it’s the people who can share impressive achievements along with what it takes to achieve them that really stand out.  If you want to get chosen for a great opportunity, this is how you go about impressing top employers.

 

Larry Wang 

Posted by on in Recruitment

5 Tips To Creating A Job Winning CV

CV

Whilst content of course is principal, you can put yourself at an advantage by constructing a CV that’s uncomplicated, succinct and effortless to read. Composing your CV is definitely not one of life’s most thrilling activities, but with some simple advice you can certainly make it a lot more painless for yourself.

Easy reading

By creating a structure that makes visual sense and is simple to navigate, your CV will immediately earn you your first few brownie points with a recruiter or hiring manager who is reviewing it for the first time. Some people mistakenly feel the need to feature year upon year of experience on multiple pages but this is, to put it bluntly, CV suicide. Sources claim you only have 6 seconds to impress a recruiter with your CV so it’s imperative that you make it count. Best practice and experience tells us to keep the CV to a maximum of two pages, using brief paragraphs and plenty of bullet points. A CV is not the story of your life but rather a showcase of your professional acumen.

 

The proof’s in the pudding

Your key achievements are what will help you stand out and in today’s competitive market, you need to know your unique selling points and exploit them. Employers are constantly searching for added value, so consider carefully how you’ve demonstrated this in your career. Even if you don’t have a hefty sales target on your head, you can illustrate your added value in a number of ways regardless of your discipline. You might have executed a lucrative marketing campaign that achieved a dramatic increase in web traffic (inadvertently leading to more sales) or you may have taken on an additional task that saved the company from outsourcing therefore saving cash. Other examples of added value include time saved, processes improved and direct increase in revenue.

 

Be careful with the creative

Keep fonts simple and leave pictures to the artists of the world. It tends to be much safer to keep your CV plain if you don’t work in the creative industries. You’re aiming for inoffensive. We know there’s loads of content geared towards standing out from the crowd and daring to be different is the latest trend in how to live your life, but there are some instances where this really isn’t necessary and the CV is one of them. Let the content do the talking. If you’re a graphic designer, go crazy, but always consider your audience first.

 

Have confidence

Big yourself up a little! Your CV is not the time to get shy about your greatest professional achievements, you should be celebrating those. Obviously don’t go overboard because arrogance is a major turn off, but if you’ve got loads of achievements they should be celebrated and visible on your CV. Why work hard to achieve something to keep it in the cupboard for the rest of your life? It’s totally pointless. Embrace it!

 

Target your CV

If you’re serious about a job role you’re applying to, then this point is absolutely vital. Take a look at the requirements and responsibilities of the role and make sure you’ve addressed these on your CV. If the recruiter sees no link between your CV and the job in question, you’re not going to get very far in the process. You may have been doing a role that spans a number of different disciplines and this new role might be honing in on just one of those disciplines. Take this this on board and tailor your CV to this as best you can.

By Laura Chetcuti

Published: 

The Human Touch - Poem by Spencer Michael Free

 

 

’Tis the human touch
in this world that counts,
The touch of your hand and mine,
Which means far more
to the fainting heart
Than shelter and bread and wine.
For shelter is gone
when the night is o’er,
And bread lasts only a day.
But the touch of the hand
And the sound of the voice
Sing on in the soul always. 

Posted by on in Recruitment

Preparing for interview can be a tricky business.  Doing your homework is vital

Christine Khor, a Recruitment Director at Chorus Executive and author of Hire Love, told News.com.au promising candidates are still making surprising mistakes and cheating themselves out of their perfect role.

Advising them on how to dress, when to arrive and who they’re interviewing with is a solid start, but how do you ensure they aren’t pipped at the post by a better prepared competitor?

She outlined nine errors candidates must avoid if they are to seal the deal at an interview.

1.Telling Lies

Khor advises that candidates are best to be upfront and honest with interviewers. “Be really honest,” she says. “Don’t lie on your CV, you’ll always get caught. If you have no degree, you were made redundant or you didn’t get along with your boss, just say so.”

2. Leaving Out The Context

Make sure your candidate is fully prepped to explain their work history. “Don’t just say you got made redundant. Say the global financial crisis happened, they closed a department, 78 people lost their jobs and unfortunately you were one of them,” Khor said.

3. Lack of CV Knowledge

Make sure your candidate knows their CV back to front. “People get the details wrong, the dates wrong, their financial achievements,” she said. 

4. Not Understanding the Role

Many candidates don’t know enough about the organisation or position. “There’s a difference between wanting to leave your job and why you want to work for someone,”  Khor said.

5. Raising Issues Early On

Tell your candidate to keep any negatives to themselves at the start. “I’m seeing this more and more, especially with women,” Khor said. “Single mums and dads both need flexibility for pick-up and drop-offs, but women will say it very quickly at the beginning.

“You need to be honest if you need flexibility, but you don’t need to say it straight away. Biased or not, it puts in the employer’s mind that it’s not going to work.”

6. Underselling

People typically go for jobs where they fulfil 80% of the criteria, but many candidates will focus on the 20% they can’t do. Khor said this is often an issue with female candidates. “Women are putting up barriers for themselves,” she said.

7. Overselling

“There’s a fine line between underselling and overselling yourself,” Khor said.  “Interviewers want to know how passionate you are and [about] your achievements but they also want to know your faults. None of us are perfect.”

8. Making Bad Jokes

Khor told of an interview in which a candidate said he would drive business by using “dirt” he had on people.  She said it was clearly a joke, but the seed of doubt was planted.

9. Asking About Moving On

The opportunity to ask questions at the end of an interview can be a minefield, with Khor suggesting candidates steer away from questions about progression. “People want to know you want the job,” she said. “Talk about wanting the job, not just wanting to be at the organisation.”