Your answer to "Why should we hire you?" during an interview can make or break your chances of securing the job. "You want to convey that not only are you a safe choice with minimal risk - but also a great choice," says Lynn Taylor, national workplace expert. The following tips can help you answer this question effectively and confidently.
Anticipate the Question
The single best way to approach this question is to prepare yourself ahead of time. Do your research on the company and the job prior to setting up the interview, and make it thorough. You need to know the company's values and hot-button issues to be able to convince it to hire you. Read about the company's current challenges and future goals, and write down a list of skills you possess that could help it realize its objectives. Then, start to formulate a response to the question. Even if the interviewer doesn't ask it directly, you still have a nice framework on which to build your other interview responses.
Listen for Cues From the Interviewer
Even if you've done your homework prior to the interview, you can still glean valuable information during the interview itself based on the hiring manager's own words. Pay attention to the types of questions you are asked; these are clues that tell you what's most important to the company. For instance, if the hiring manager asks you about your experience with PowerPoint presentations and marketing materials, use that same information at the end of the interview when he inevitably asks why he should hire you. You can say something like, "You need someone with lots of PowerPoint experience who can also create marketing materials on the fly. You should hire me because I have over 10 years of experience creating complex presentations in PowerPoint, and I've worked closely with graphic designers on four different major marketing campaigns."
Keep It Concise
As tempting as it may be to give a detailed rundown of every possible reason an employer might want to hire you, refrain from rambling. The interviewer is looking for something like an elevator pitch; provide a brief summary of your experience and qualifications, and connect your skills with the company's needs and goals. Try to keep your answer to 30 seconds or less.
It's hard to convince someone to hire you if you don't convey a genuine interest in the opportunity. From the beginning to the end of the interview, watch your body language and tone of voice. Sit up straight, make strong eye contact and listen intently. Smile when you speak about your accomplishments and qualifications, and make it clear you are excited about the opportunity. That energy is infectious and endearing, and it shows the interviewer you really want to be considered.
Don't let this question take you by surprise during the interview; after all, the entire purpose of the interview is to convince a company to hire you. By prepping yourself ahead of time and paying close attention to the interviewer's cues, you can formulate a concise, put-together response that presents your qualifications in the best light.
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