Job interviews can be incredibly stressful. You are tasked with selling yourself, your skills, experiences, and attitudes to a hiring manager while answering tough questions about yourself. You don’t want to be overconfident, but you don’t want to undersell yourself. The key to a successful job interview is preparation.
One of the most common and most intimidating questions an interviewer will ask is, “why should I hire you?”
When they ask this question, they are really asking, “why are you the best candidate for the position?”
This question is meant to see how you set yourself apart from the competition. Most interviewers will ask this question at some point during the interview.
Because of this, knowing how to answer this question well without appearing boastful is an essential part of how to prepare for an interview.
So, before your interview, make sure you study the tips below.
Pitfalls to Avoid
Before getting into how to answer this question, you need to know what to avoid in your answers.
This question is where your interviewer wants to hear what makes you different from the other candidates who have applied for the position.
Simply answering this question with “I am qualified and smart, and I want to work with your company” will not cut it.
Talking too much
Your answer to this question should be concise, accurate, and easy to understand.
The more you go off on tangents about the time you did this or helped someone with that, the more you will lose your interviewer’s interest.
Remember, your interviewer has likely gone through many interviews (and will likely go through more) — sometimes even on the same day. Therefore, you want your answer to be short, sweet, and memorable.
This is your elevator pitch for why you are the right choice.
Yes, this question is meant to offer you a space to separate yourself from the competition for the position, but it is easy to go overboard.
The more you boast about your abilities, the more skeptical your interviewer will become.
So this is the time to boost yourself humbly, not without bounds.
Rather than going in blind, come up with bullet points of your best skills and experiences and become familiar with them.
This can help you to keep your answer focused.
Realistically, you can use several different approaches to answer this question.
The approach you select for your answer depends on your personality, experiences, and the job you are applying for.
Without further ado, here are some approaches to answer this question well.
Highlight Your Experience with a Specific Skill
Every position requires certain skills and experiences to do well.
Pick one of the skills required for the position you are interviewing for and highlight your experience.
Use specific examples, such as a particular instance where you demonstrated this skill.
This is also an opportunity to highlight some of your work to the interviewer to determine if it fits what they are looking for in the position.
Pose a Question Back to Clarify
This is a great way to ensure that you are answering the question the way the interviewer may be looking for.
The point of this approach is to show the interviewer that you are paying attention and clarifying before going into an answer that may or may not answer the question they are asking.
An example of this would be noting what you think they are looking for in a candidate (such as handling customers effectively and quickly) and asking if that is correct.
Then, if that is what they are looking for for this position, you can tell them about a time when you did just that in your previous job or volunteer experience.
But, again, try to aim for a specific example here because that will be more memorable for the interviewer.
Note Your Inability to Know the Experience of Your Competitors
No one can know the other candidates’ experiences and skills.
Noting this at the beginning of your answer can give you more credibility and transparency, making you stand out from the crowd.
After noting this, you can talk about what makes you a good fit for the position — such as experiences, passion, skills, or anything else.
Be Upfront and Honest
Lying or embellishing your experiences in an interview is never a good idea.
If you do not have much experience in a particular area or skill set, be upfront about it.
Get this out of the way as early as possible so you can focus on what you can bring to the table.
Maybe this is your enthusiasm for the role, soft skills — such as organisation or prioritisation — or interpersonal skills.
How to answer “Why Do You Want to Work Here?”
After you’ve made it through the “why are you the best candidate for the position” question, you’ll likely be offered the second most challenging question to answer: why do you want to work here?
Offering a simple answer like “the pay is good, and the office is close to my house” will not inspire your interviewer to put your name at the top of their list.
When you answer this question, you want to demonstrate that you have done your homework and want to be a part of the company’s culture.
Show your interviewer that you are a good fit for this culture, that you love the company’s ideals and goals, and that you are passionate about the company’s products or services.
Demonstrate how your and the company’s values align with each other.
This will show the interviewer that you are not simply looking at this job for a short-term solution before you move on to something else.
Now you know how to answer these two crucial questions in an interview.
Remember that simply rehearsing an answer will likely not be as effective as simply preparing a few different approaches or pieces of information you want to highlight when answering these challenging questions.
This is because a rehearsed answer can come across as too forced.
If you still have trouble finding jobs that match your skills in Melbourne, you can visit WellsGray Recruitment.
Allow us to connect you with some of Melbourne’s leading employers. To get started on your path for the perfect job for you, contact us here.