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Old 03-23-2012, 08:16 AM
 
Location: Baltimore, MD
3,879 posts, read 7,870,934 times
Reputation: 5158

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I just had an in-person interview yesterday that I think went very well. Quick background, I applied for this job 2 weeks ago on a Weds. night and got an email from the hiring manager the very next morning setting up a phone interview. The phone interview went very well and only 10 mins into it he told me he'd love to meet with me and gave me his availibility later that day. The in-person went well (we spoke for nearly 2 hours, some of it very casual convo) and when he asked if I had writing samples, I had 5 color copies on hand plus a one-pager of key accomplishments and projects I've managed successfully.

He let me know he has only one other candidate coming in for an interview next week and would call me afterwards. Per his request, I sent him some press releases this morning. When I asked him what challenges one would face in this position he mentioned that because its a small company there is no formal training or procedures in place to get started so that could be a frustration for someone used to being told how things are done. As an extra step when I emailed him this morning, I explained what tasks I would perform to get myself started if offered the position such as learning about all the products, studying previous marketing communications for brand voice and positioning and researching competitor information.

I'm hoping this will show my initiative and drive and that I will not be sitting around waiting for direction but will self start.

So for hiring managers on this board, are there things that a candidate can do or has done that has made them stand out or made you more likely to offer them the position? Are there any extra things an applicant can do to catch your attention or draw your interest?
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Old 03-23-2012, 10:26 PM
 
Location: In my view finder.....
8,520 posts, read 15,098,733 times
Reputation: 8079
For me,

No, nothing you can do. First, If I'm interviewing you, you already have a chance of being hired. After that it boils down to personal preference.

That's how most think. Maybe they will not admit it but it boils down to: did I get a warm and fuzzy feeling after talking to you.

A lot of decisions are made based on that. Usually if you land the interview, you know you are a desired candidate after that it's personal preference.
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Old 03-25-2012, 08:01 AM
 
Location: San Tan Valley, AZ
55 posts, read 104,156 times
Reputation: 98
I appreciate honesty. Not referring to not being truthful, though - but that is required on another level. What I appreciate is that I can see who a person really is and how he/she will get along with other people. The way that I look at it is that I am not hiring the "fake" persona that you show in the interview. Apart from the requirements in the job specification, I want someone that I will not mind working with day in and day out.

It is part of the reason that I run a more "informal" phase of the interviews I conduct. The process we have is that we do a "good cop / bad cop" interview, where phase one is the traditional screening process that I run ("good cop") and one of my peers does the more straight-laced ("bad cop") in-depth interview. We then have to agree that both of our parts of the interview went well enough to continue. It is a bit unorthodox, but the quality of people we have brought on have gone up tremendously. Not only do we now have a team of technically inclined people, the team dynamic is better than it has ever been.

So, how does that translate into something helpful for candidates, you may ask? I think that the candidate has the power to show motivation and interest in the job. Look at it this way, if you have two people with nearly identical backgrounds and skills for one open position, there has to be something that sets you apart from the other. When an interviewer asks you what you like to do for fun, not only think about yourself, but make it conversational and ask the interviewer the same. Try and find something in common with the interviewer that you can momentarily divert (and control) the interview with. It helps set you apart from the sea of names on pieces of paper if you can provide that connection that will make the face go with the name.
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Old 03-25-2012, 11:36 AM
 
4,761 posts, read 12,959,127 times
Reputation: 7918
For small businesses and you are interviewing with the manager you will work for (no human resources department)...

The situation probably is that a pervious employee has moved on or the company has more business lately and needs another employee to help with the work load...

With that said, that manager is probably doing his work as well as the work of the missing employee. And does NOT have time to read through that large stack of resumes waiting on the desk.

So after sending in your resume, wait a few days, then you can pay a personal visit and ask the manager if you have the job. Say you really want it. Give him/her your name. Then leave. The manager will probably look through the pile and for the first time read your entire resume.

Pay another personal visit in a couple of days. Ask if you have the job, say you really want it...

Then at that point the manager would know you were qualified for the position (if you were) and that everything looked good on your resume (if it did)... And he/she might "give up"!

That is realize he/she is never going to have time to go through that pile, you are standing right there and qualify for the job, he/she might just say OK, come on in and I'll interview you.

And he/she is thinking this is the only person who REALLY wants the job. Then you might find yourself hired after the interview or a few days after that.

Not the way things should work. Not fair to the other applicants. But the way things are sometimes...
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Old 03-25-2012, 12:13 PM
 
2,949 posts, read 5,169,569 times
Reputation: 1628
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miss Crabcakes View Post
I just had an in-person interview yesterday that I think went very well. Quick background, I applied for this job 2 weeks ago on a Weds. night and got an email from the hiring manager the very next morning setting up a phone interview. The phone interview went very well and only 10 mins into it he told me he'd love to meet with me and gave me his availibility later that day. The in-person went well (we spoke for nearly 2 hours, some of it very casual convo) and when he asked if I had writing samples, I had 5 color copies on hand plus a one-pager of key accomplishments and projects I've managed successfully.

He let me know he has only one other candidate coming in for an interview next week and would call me afterwards. Per his request, I sent him some press releases this morning. When I asked him what challenges one would face in this position he mentioned that because its a small company there is no formal training or procedures in place to get started so that could be a frustration for someone used to being told how things are done. As an extra step when I emailed him this morning, I explained what tasks I would perform to get myself started if offered the position such as learning about all the products, studying previous marketing communications for brand voice and positioning and researching competitor information.

I'm hoping this will show my initiative and drive and that I will not be sitting around waiting for direction but will self start.

So for hiring managers on this board, are there things that a candidate can do or has done that has made them stand out or made you more likely to offer them the position? Are there any extra things an applicant can do to catch your attention or draw your interest?
Good luck Crab, sounds like you showed a lot of initiative and were very prepared.
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Old 03-25-2012, 06:26 PM
 
Location: In my view finder.....
8,520 posts, read 15,098,733 times
Reputation: 8079
Are you a hiring manager?



Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy_J View Post
For small businesses and you are interviewing with the manager you will work for (no human resources department)...

The situation probably is that a pervious employee has moved on or the company has more business lately and needs another employee to help with the work load...

With that said, that manager is probably doing his work as well as the work of the missing employee. And does NOT have time to read through that large stack of resumes waiting on the desk.

So after sending in your resume, wait a few days, then you can pay a personal visit and ask the manager if you have the job. Say you really want it. Give him/her your name. Then leave. The manager will probably look through the pile and for the first time read your entire resume.

Pay another personal visit in a couple of days. Ask if you have the job, say you really want it...

Then at that point the manager would know you were qualified for the position (if you were) and that everything looked good on your resume (if it did)... And he/she might "give up"!

That is realize he/she is never going to have time to go through that pile, you are standing right there and qualify for the job, he/she might just say OK, come on in and I'll interview you.

And he/she is thinking this is the only person who REALLY wants the job. Then you might find yourself hired after the interview or a few days after that.

Not the way things should work. Not fair to the other applicants. But the way things are sometimes...
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Old 03-25-2012, 07:52 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
36,406 posts, read 66,215,441 times
Reputation: 42238
I am a hiring manager. When I interview I include at least one other person that is at my level and one HR person in the interviews. While I have the final decision, the others provide input. For me, when the qualifications of two candidates are equal, what makes the biggest difference is attitude. It's important to me that a new employee wants to be there. How is that demonstrated in an interview? Do research and show in your answers that you know something about the organization. Ask questions that show an interest in the company, rather than asking about benefits or start/end times. Tell the interviewer(s) in a sincere manner that you really want to work there.
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Old 03-27-2012, 05:15 AM
 
26,589 posts, read 58,398,941 times
Reputation: 13121
Grab me with your cover letter. Show personality and show that you can differentiate yourself from the pack. Offer me something besides your work history that is applicable to the job--volunteer work or even an interesting hobby that will translate to some facet of the job. Show me that you are a vibrant person, not some drone. That's what will get you the interview. I cull the pack of resumes hard before I even interview a single person, only 1% even get a phoner. And those are the people who have grabbed my attention with their cover letter.
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Old 03-27-2012, 07:52 AM
 
841 posts, read 1,811,589 times
Reputation: 1182
Good luck to you!
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:49 AM
 
Location: NYC
16,023 posts, read 24,591,462 times
Reputation: 24659
Good luck. I don't think there is a one size fits all for this situation. Every hiring manager is different what he or she wants or doesn't want as follow up. Some hiring managers find a person who calls after the interview to follow up as a go getter, others see it as desparate. You need to do the best you can 'reading' the cues of the hiring manager and ask probing questions to find out what the best course of action for THAT company is.
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