Peter J. Jessen

"Goals Per Action" Success Consultant · · 9931 SW 61st Ave., Portland, OR 97219 · Tel: 503.977.3240 · Fax: 503.977.3239

Job Hunting Boot Camp

Introduction | Agenda Examples | Chart Paths | Elevator Pitch | Networking | Interviewing | The Manual

4-Step Employment Interview

STEP 1:   BREAK THE ICE:  establish affiliation (commonalty of background).  OR:  refer to the third party who referred you.  OR:  compliment the interviewer based on his/her actions.  OR:  comment on an object of mutual interest.

STEP 2:   SUMMARIZE PRODUCT BEING SOLD - "YOU"  (memorize, work on, and continually refine your statement of II.C.2. above).

STEP 3:   ASK TWO-PART QUESTIONS (part 1 = a statement; part 2 = a question) about the company or the interviewer, based on (1) third-party referral information; (2) readings; (3) observations; and/or (4) comments made by the interviewer.

The interviewer has FOUR OPTIONS regarding how to respond to your two-part  questions:

      OPTION 1:    If your question is answered and the topic remains the same, ask another two-
                           part question, extending his or her answer and/or logic.

      OPTION 2:    If you are asked a question about your past, respond with a PSR story and then
                           ask a qualifying question.

      OPTION 3:    If you are asked how you would solve an existing or future hypothetical or real
                           problem, respond with:

                                (1)    "Based on what I know so far about your company and its players, it's
                                       difficult for me to predict exactly how I would handle that.  However, it
                                       reminds me of a similar situation when I was with                                          .
                                       Give a PSR story related to the need, and ask a two-part question.
                     OR:             (
                                (2)    Ask a qualifying question; e.g., "What do you see in that experience or
                                       situation relevant to me and my situation?"

      OPTION 4:   If an objection arises (which is usually a stall and/or a reason not to buy, usually related to
                          credentials - lack of MBA, age, income, sex, lack of certain industry or product
                          knowledge), respond with:

                          THE 4-PART LOCK STEP (M-E-M-O-R-I-Z-E)
                                (1) "I appreciate your concern."
                                (2) "As I see it, the person you need should be able to                               
                                                Isn't that basically correct?"
                                (3) "If I could show you that I have that ability, would that influence your
                                                thinking?"  (Or: . . make a difference?")
                                (4) Give a PSR story as an example.

STEP 4:   END THE INTERVIEW:  close the meeting but don't leave without something (following are in descending order of importance; when you get one, stop):

        (1)    "Where do we go from here?"  (Seek a second interview or appointment with interviewer or
               next person in the interview chain.)
       (2)    "When can I get back in touch?"  (Seek a time for you to call back.)
       (3)    "When do you think that will be?"  (Seek an indication of strength of interest; get a time.) 
               If evasiveness continues:
        (4)    "Based on what you know about me, how do you see me fitting into your company?" 
               (If #1 - 3 go nowhere, go for the "order".)  If no:
        (5)   "Since there doesn't seem to be any opportunity with you, who would you refer me to, inside or
               outside your company?"  If none:
        (6)     "What advice and counsel can you provide me regarding both my job search and on improving
                 my interview skills?"  (Find out what you are doing wrong so you can correct it; otherwise, you
                 will repeat your mistakes and gain little from your interviews.)