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  • In a job interview, the person considering you for the job is looking not just for skill verification,

  • but for connection with you.

  • What kind of connection?

  • In this video, we'll sit down with three experts to discuss how to build a connection with an interviewer.

  • We'll go over some DO's and DON'Ts of interviewing.

  • You CAN prepare for thisit isn't something you have to leave up to chance.

  • The right kind of research can make a great positive impression.

  • At the end, there will also be a quick English lesson on the pronunciation of this word

  • for my non-native English speaking students.

  • When you like someone, when you connect, you want to be around him or her.

  • So in an interview, you want the person interviewing you to like you, to connect with you.

  • I kind of thought this was up to chance.

  • Is your personality a good fit?

  • But Cindy, who has interviewed and hired over a hundred people in her career, set me straight.

  • Here, I asked her how far into an interview she might know if she would hire someone,

  • and how she would know that.

  • It is often pretty quick, within the first ten or fifteen minutes, not always, but often.

  • And it is usually a connection, if I am hiring that person to work with me.

  • Meaning that I feel like this is somebody that we could work well together.

  • So it kind of sounds like you're saying: this is not something that someone can prepare for,

  • connecting with the person who's interviewing them, is that sort of up to chance, would you say?

  • No, actually I would say there are there are things you can do to prepare.

  • I think one of them is to practice your interviewing skills.

  • Do mock interviews because it makes you more comfortable and the more comfortable

  • you are in an interview, the more likely you are to have a connection with somebody.

  • If you walk in nervous and you're not yourself, then the interviewer doesn't get to see who you are,

  • which means that they may miss something.

  • And some people interview very comfortably, and help put you at ease, and some people don't.

  • So you kind of need to just be prepared for that,

  • and get yourself as comfortable as you can be so that you can show who you are.

  • I think the other thing is knowing, I think we'll talk about this, but knowing the job. Knowing the organization.

  • And knowing why you want it makes you compelling. And that helps build a connection.

  • So like if you walk into an interview, and you can talk about why you want this job, and why it's,

  • you know, meaningful to you, that's gonna help build a connection with somebody and you can prepare for that.

  • She mentioned two things: nerves, managing your nerves, and being comfortable,

  • and knowing about the position you're applying for,

  • having a compelling story about why you're a good fit for the position.

  • These both lead to connection, and these are both concrete things you can prepare for.

  • In fact, Cindy says connection is so important,

  • it once led her to hire someone even when he wasn't qualified for the original job.

  • And there have been times where I've had that feeling, and in fact, I can think of an example of

  • a guy that I talked to on the phone, it's a phone interview, and I just,

  • I felt like he had a really compelling reason for why he wanted to do this work.

  • He was a career switcher, he was moving from the corporate world into non-profit,

  • he had a really great story about that.

  • He was very compelling, he was super energized, he was clearly very smart,

  • he wasn't qualified for the job I was talking to him about, but I liked him and so I said: why don't you come in?

  • I was hiring for a lot of positions at the time, let's talk more,

  • and figure out if there's a fit for you because I liked him.

  • So that sort of connection and compelling piece is really important.

  • It is certainly not all there is,

  • he had solid experience in the business world, and I knew there had to be a way for that to be transferable.

  • And he's somebody I'd end up hiring.

  • >> Okay, so you hired him for another job? >> And promoted probably three times.

  • Promoted three times? Wow!

  • She had a connection with him, she liked him, so she found the right job for him at her organization,

  • and in fact, promoted him 3 times over her working relationship with him.

  • Connecting with the person you're interviewing with is key to successfully landing a job.

  • Connecting with the interviewer.

  • What exactly does that mean?

  • He had a compelling story about why he wanted that.

  • So, someone should not just know, I want that job, but they should have a really clear and concise,

  • maybe not concise, but a very clear, compelling way to describe why they want that,

  • to make that sort of like their story about,

  • and that would... So you're saying that kind of articulation can lead to the connection?

  • Definitely.

  • Because obviously the person who's interviewing

  • feels that because they're working in that, in that capacity already.

  • Yeah.

  • And of course that's not, I mean, there may be a connection otherwise,

  • but I do think that stuff matters because ultimately, I'm not looking for you to be my friend.

  • This is very different from us having just a connection.

  • I'm looking to say: can we work well together?

  • Could we work on the same team?

  • I think, so it is, it is different and there are things you can do

  • to increase the chances of sort of feeling that in a job interview.

  • We can talk about connecting with a prospective employer two ways:

  • First, know the organization well.

  • This will be specific to each job interview you have.

  • Second, prepare yourself to be at ease,

  • present yourself well through body language and impressive answers to interview questions.

  • This work of preparing yourself will apply to every job interview you go on.

  • Taking the time to prepare these two ways will put you miles ahead of a candidate

  • who interviews for a job without investing the time in good research and preparation.

  • They will both set you up for connecting with the organization and the interviewer.

  • The rest of this video will focus on interview do's and don'ts relating to researching

  • and talking about the organization in a job interview.

  • The next video in this course will go over job interview do's and don'ts

  • relating to body language and the kinds of answers to give to specific questions.

  • For each job you interview for, DO understand what kind of interview you'll be in.

  • DON'T assume it will be with a single person.

  • Laura, who is a career advisor at a prestigious college here in the US, tells her students this:

  • Well, first of all, I talk to them about doing their research.

  • They really need to look into who they're gonna be meeting with, how long the interview is going to be,

  • and study the organization, look at the website, really explore in-depth what the organization is about.

  • I asked her why she tells students to ask about length. Why does that matter?

  • It matters because you want to be prepared.

  • You want to know what you're in for.

  • So if it's an hour-long interview, and you're gonna be meeting with one person,

  • you only do your research on that one person.

  • You have a sense of how much stamina you need to have during an interview.

  • But if it's going to be a full-day, nine-to-five interview, you're gonna be meeting with 10 to 12 people,

  • you want to know that going in, you want to know, you want to bring the right snacks if you need them,

  • you want to know when you're gonna have a break,

  • things like that, so that you can just be mentally prepared.

  • How often would you say your students are going into a job interview where it is an all-day kind of thing,

  • is that common?

  • It's common in certain industries, so they're, especially in business and finance, and consulting,

  • there are 'super days' is what they call them, and so they are there all day long.

  • My husband David told me he once went in for a job interview, and he was expecting to be with one person,

  • but it was with a whole panel, a half-dozen people, and that really threw him off and made him nervous.

  • So ask the person who sets you up for the interview what the interview will be like.

  • Knowing what to expect can help calm your nerves,

  • which will prepare you to connect with your potential employer.

  • DO research the organization where you're interviewing

  • DON'T think you already know everything you need to know.

  • A common opening for a job interview is: Tell me what you know about our organization.

  • Steve, a local small business owner here close to Philly, said that he leads with this question.

  • I think one of the absolute first questions that I ask an interviewee, or person that's coming in for an interview

  • is: What do they know about our organization?

  • if they tell me some things, you know, we know what you do, what products you carry, what services you provide,

  • and I know they've been prepared, they're coming through with,

  • they've at least researched our organization, and know, even if it's just a quick Google search,

  • they're going to know a little bit about our organization and what we do.

  • Have you ever had someone who didn't really know what to say when you ask them the initial question,

  • what do you know about our company, or that kind of thing?

  • Yeah I've had many people that have, that, it's surprising,

  • it's as simple as googling your your organization and they didn't even take the time to do that.

  • I was surprised some people wouldn't have even done that basic amount of research.

  • Don't be one of those people.

  • What kind of impression did that leave on Steve?

  • It's a...it's a strike against you.

  • A strike against you.

  • You don't want your very first interview question to reflect poorly on you.

  • Do the research.

  • Go to the organization's website.

  • You'll even want to research the person who is interviewing you:

  • DO: Research you interviewer

  • DON'T: Talk about it too much or go too in-depth on it in the interview.

  • Listen to what Cindy says about preparing for an interview:

  • One other thing I would add about the preparing to connect, because it does sound sort of creepy,

  • is you can go overboard on that. So I've had people look me up on LinkedIn,

  • learn as much as they can about me, number one, you should.

  • You should know as much as you can about the person that you are going to meet with.

  • And number two, you should act like you don't know all of those things.

  • I think there are some exceptions like you may say: Oh, I noticed the you worked at X organization,

  • and I worked there too, or, I volunteered there, like if there's a connection like that, that you found on LinkedIn,

  • that is easy to find, that's okay.

  • If it was not easy to find, you shouldn't mention it. 'Cause that's creepy.

  • But you also shouldn't continually come back to all the things that you learned about somebody,

  • because that can be a real turnoff. So there's this very delicate balance of how you prepare for an interview,

  • you do want to know you're talking to, you you want to know their background,

  • it's okay to note something that is a connection,

  • but you don't want to go overboard because it could come across as a very different experience,

  • and really lose the connection.

  • When you're researching the organization,

  • Cindy mentioned one thing to make sure you know: the mission.

  • Know the mission, and know how to relate it to the work you've done.

  • Can you give an example of a mission and what,

  • how you would tell, what you'd be looking for, whether or not someone would fit into that mission or culture?

  • I mean, a lot of people who are watching this video might not be that familiar with what does

  • the culture of a workplace mean?

  • So mission and culture, two different things. And so, from a mission perspective,

  • that would be what we talked about earlier, the compelling reason why you want to work somewhere?

  • That is, to some degree, whether you're going to fit from a mission perspective.

  • So it can be challenging to change from one sector to another,

  • because if you're wanting to move particularly to mission driven work,

  • you haven't done mission driven work, there needs to be a compelling reason for why you're doing that

  • because you want people to be connected to the mission.

  • So at that point, we'd be looking for where have you volunteered?

  • Where have you been spending your time outside of your job? Which is 100% percent fine and compelling,

  • as long as it's there, right?

  • Can you give an example of a mission? Like, maybe...

  • So, I mean so working in the education space, for example, and so

  • you could work for an organization that's supporting schools better in high poverty areas.

  • There's lots of organizations in that space.

  • You could be working in the philanthropy space where you're,

  • you know, working at foundations and giving money to organizations.

  • There are missions that are more around basic needs, so supporting like a homeless shelter,

  • or a food bank, or you know, missions like that, that are more basic needs.

  • And yeah, and I think that probably, any non-profit, you could look up their mission on the website.

  • What about businesses? Do a lot of businesses or companies do this too?

  • Yeah. Most, I would say most businesses have some some mission as well,

  • and it is important to know that ahead of time.

  • DO know the mission of the organization or company you hope to work for

  • and be prepared to talk about how your past work or volunteer activities support that mission.

  • DON'T think you have a general idea of the mission.

  • Look it up.

  • Know it word for word.

  • Cindy says, beyond reading the company's website,

  • And then do some basic searches so that you can figure out whether they've been in the news at all,

  • for anything that maybe doesn't show up on their site, good or bad.

  • And I would do that before, right before you go in the interview so that you know there's any current news,

  • particularly if you're going in for an interview with a large company, or a large nonprofit.

  • To summarize, you CAN prepare to connect with the person who is interviewing you.

  • Read the website of the organization, search for appearances in the news,

  • and be sure you know the mission statement if there is one.

  • Know what kind of interview it will be and who you'll be interviewing with.

  • Look that person up on LinkedIn, but don't dwell on what you know about that person in the interview.

  • Another way to prepare to connect is to manage nerves.

  • This includes preparing answers to common interview questions.

  • It's very important that you know how to talk someone through your resume,

  • talk about transitions between jobs, and highlight your skills without sounding arrogant.

  • In the next video, we'll hear from Laura, Cindy, and Steve

  • how you can make the best impression by the kinds of answers you give

  • and how to practice interviewing ahead of time.

  • We'll talk about managing nerves, and how to use body language and vocal tone to your advantage.

  • For my non-native students, we're going to get to your English lesson in just a minute.

  • If you haven't already, be sure to click the subscribe button and the bell for notifications.

  • I make new videos on the English language and American culture every Tuesday

  • and have over 600 videos on my channel to date

  • focusing on l istening comprehension and accent reduction.

  • While you're waiting for next week's video, a great next step would be to check out thisget started playlist.”

  • And now, here's a quick pronunciation lesson.

  • Cindy and Laura both used this word in their interviews, but they pronounced them differently.

  • What's the difference? Can you hear it?

  • Yes, not always, but they often are.

  • It is often very quick.

  • Laura did not pronounce the T, but Cindy did.

  • Often, often.

  • Which pronunciation is correct?

  • They both are.

  • Lots of words in American English have more than one correct pronunciation,

  • and dictionaries will list all of them.

  • The first one listed is the most common.

  • For this word, it's more common to drop the T,

  • but, as Cindy demonstrated, it's certainly not unusual to pronounce the word with a light True T, tt, tt, often.