Die Antwort im Vorstellungsgespräch, die Sie unbewusst vermasseln

„Tell me something about yourself.“ Few questions in the interview sound so easy, and yet this icebreaker, which is not really worth mentioning, is one of the questions that recruiters most often screw up.

On the surface, this looks like a pretty simple question that can’t really be answered incorrectly. However, most applicants do not understand that the interviewer is not really asking them to tell him or her about their personal side. He or she wants you to tell them something about their professional side. There is a significant difference between them.

Avoid getting too personal

Interviews and getting to know each other have a lot in common: forced smiles, hope, an endless stream of questions and fluttering nerves. But they don’t have one thing in common, and that’s the answer to that question. If you see this question as an invitation to talk about yourself, it’s the easiest way to drop the ball and start the interview on the wrong foot.

The story of your life may be as fascinating as it wants – interviewers want you to focus on your professional life when answering this question. It is not a problem to tell where you came from or how many children you have. However, they don’t want to hear from every applicant that they like movies, books, soccer, eating, sleeping, breathing, etc. Our own studies show that more than 40% of employers don’t like job interviewers to be trusted. Therefore, concentrate on the professional aspects.

Do not repeat yourself

Imagine you buy an article on the web and click on „More information“. A small box with text is displayed. If you read the text, you will find that it contains the same information, just put it differently. Unfortunately, this frustrating and useless phenomenon is found far too often in job interviews.

If you answer this question, you should remember that you are in an interview. Why? Because you sent an application that was read and you were invited to an interview. If you are sitting in front of a hiring manager, he or she already knows what you have studied and that you were employed in your last position from April 2014 to November 2016. If you repeat this information, it is not only a waste of time , but you are also wasting a good opportunity to tell something about your professional side. Why did you choose to move to your last position? What did you mainly learn and achieve there? And why do you want to switch now? Instead of telling the hiring managerwhat is on your resume should fill in the gaps and tell what is not there. Nobody can do that for you.

Show enthusiasm

When we asked our recruiters to share their most important advice for applicants, many gave the same answer: show enthusiasm. Even if employers like it when applicants have excellent training and extensive experience, it can be crucial in an interview to show enthusiasm for the position.

This advice is supported by our own research: In our Employment Monitor for the third quarter of 2015, we found that 96% of all employers would prefer applicants with a convincing attitude to applicants with more extensive experience. This is because it is easier to teach enthusiastic people what they need to know than to inspire enthusiasm in people who are more complacent. So make sure you show your enthusiasm.

This deceptively simple question will definitely be asked in your interview. This is why it can be so disadvantageous if you answer this question incorrectly. If you don’t understand what a hiring manager wants to know when this question is asked, it not only means that you’re wasting time talking about non-relevant topics like pets and children here, but you don’t really understand what it is goes. So as much as you would like to talk about your cats, cribs, or silver spoons – do not do so until you get the job. I am sure that your new colleagues would like to know everything about it.

Are you ready to tell something about yourself?

Now that you know how to answer this question, you should look for someone to ask you this question.

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