Don’t just say it, prove it!
When I was in my early twenties I received a job offer 80K offer from a company – it was a huge deal to me because I had never been offered that kind of money before.
I had an initial phone interview, then two in-person interviews with two interviewers in each. I was determined not to let my nervousness get the best of me, so I prepared and tried something completely different.
I had no idea if it was going to work, but I had to find a way to stand out against the other hundreds of applications and be memorable.
Here’s what I did in addition to having rock solid answers and stories.
I brought in a brag book portfolio which included….
- My Resident Assistant of the year award from college (I was only 2 years out of college then, so I felt it was relevant to show how I was a campus leader as a Resident Assistant)
- A sheet of testimonials from former employers (I had 7 internships during my college years, but I only featured a few testimonials from the jobs I thought were most relevant)
- Showed track and field accolades of setting a record for one of my events (This demonstrated I was competitive and driven).
I didn’t just tell them I had 7 internships during my college years, while playing sports and being a campus leader, I showed them. I showed them through my stories and the brag book proved that I managed all those activities well.
As they glanced through my materials, they saw I was well balanced, focused, competitive and dedicated – all great traits for a sales person (the position I was applying for). These interviewers were busy and interviewed dozens of other candidates, but I stood out. I got a call with the job offer the next morning after the interview.
When prepping for interviews, remember it’s better to show than tell. Show with your stories, show with your portfolio of examples of your work, show with social proof.
There is no need to get in your head, get in your heart.
Do and say what you feel is right based on the context. This will help you stand out and be different.