There are a lot of things you need to get across in the job interview — that you can do the job, that you want the job, that you are trustworthy, etc. We all know and understand this, I hope.

But there’s one message many of us might forget to send the hiring manager during the interview, and it is perhaps the most important message of all: I will help you advance your career.

This is something candidates don’t think about, because we’re so busy worrying about ourselves. We want the job, we need the job, we need to earn a paycheque, advance our careers, make a good impression, dot the Ts, cross the Is…no, wait…the other way around. Whatever. We’re so worried about getting everything right and pursuing our own interests that we forget that the other person in the room – the hiring manager (of which there may be more than one at the interview) – is a professional individual with their own agenda which is to advance their own career. Your task is to convince them that hiring you is the way to do that.

Approach the interview with this in mind, and think about the best way to go about doing it. You have to convince this person that, whatever the project is or projects are for which you’re being considered, you will do such a great job that they will get a raise and promotion just for being the genius who hired you.

Some sub-messages that probably need to come through while getting this key message across:

    1. I will deliver, or better yet, over deliver.
    2. In a timely fashion, or even faster.
    3. Under budget.

And, of utmost importance:

    4. I am not after your job.

If you give the impression that you’re gunning to steal the person’s position, they’re going to be less likely to hire you. So, when they ask where you see yourself in five years, don’t give the cliché answer, “Sitting where you are now.” It’s cheesy and it’s just a bad idea.

At the end of the day, your goal is to show your potential employer how hiring you would be a brilliant career move for them. You understand what they need to be more successful and can help them get there. It’s like Zig Ziglar famously said, “You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want.”

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