Interviewing is not nearly as complicated as it sounds. However, it requires significantly more work than any college or university will lead you to believe. Colleges and universities have an incentive to make landing a job sound easier than it is to justify the extremely high cost of tuition (plus the decades of crippling student loan debt coming your way) and the four years of your life you just spent there. They want…no, they need you to believe that they have all the answers.
Spoiler Alert: they don’t have the answers. Worse yet, they are giving you the wrong answers.
“What?!? But, Justin, everybody says I need to go to college!”
I am are here to tell you that ANYONE can interview like a rockstar and land their dream job. Yes. I said ANYONE. College degree, no college degree, high school dropout or Summa Cum Laude, the interview is the great equalizer.
We have been in a continuous hiring mode for the last 24 months and have conducted over 100 interviews in that timeframe. I’ve put this list of interviewing tips and tricks together based on my experience with those interviews. You don't need a fancy piece of paper from an over-priced school to land your dream job, but here is what you do need:
1. Insightful communication
The easiest way to differentiate yourself is to show insight into the company with your initial communications (email, cover letter, resume). Emails and cover letters that show true insight into the company/brand will get a response from us if the remaining steps in this article are all followed/satisfied. This is the most impactful way to standout.
2. Meet the minimum requirements or demonstrate why an employer shouldn't care
Over 90% of the applications companies get from candidates do not meet the minimum requirements of the job. This is a huge waste of everyone's time unless you can immediately show/demonstrate why these requirements shouldn't apply to you or why these requirements are dumb and should be replaced with better ones. Hint: we love candidates who can demonstrate either/both of these things.
3. Everything is evaluated. Everything.
Employers evaluate every interaction, every document, every communication. No stone is left unturned in the hiring process. Every step of your job application should represent 100% for you. If you make a mistake or a typo on your job application, why should a prospective employer think you'll be better once they hire you?
4. Be prepared
Nothing tells a prospective employer that you are not ready for the job or will not take it seriously than poor preparation.
5. Follow instructions
This is as simple as it sounds. Following instructions is a simple, but highly differentiating characteristic in candidates applying for a new job.
Interviewing is easy. Interviewing properly requires far more diligence, persistence, and hard work than any four year school has the knowledge, skills or practical experience required to prepare you. Academia isn't real life and people who work at universities likely haven't had to compete for a real job in a long time, if ever.
While there is a huge labor shortage in the US job market today, the very best jobs like the ones we have here at Qore Performance, are still extremely competitive. We have lots of levers to pull to keep the business growing and profitable before we have to lower our standards to hire sub-par candidates and we are not alone. The wrong fit can do more harm than good. Preserving the trust and the bond shared by all of us here at Qore Performance is one of our greatest responsibilities. This is why our recruiting process is tough: to make sure only the very best candidates for each position make it through.
We hope these top five tips and tricks for how to interview like a rockstar help you land your dream job. If this list was helpful for you and inspired you to take action, then we hope you'll check out our current job openings because want to hear from you!