How To Get My Next Job Fast - Discover simple NLP techniques to stand out of the crowd

Job Interviews
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As ever having other options - other interviews lined up, or even another offer - is helpful and can add an extra bit of pressure to your push. If you fancy using the ploy, it's also worth thinking about exactly what you want to say.

How to Hack Hypnosis

Decision-makers certainly like to hear that you like their organisation that you'd not be inclined to be this determined were it any other employer and that there are one or two compelling reasons for your wanting to do a great job for them, so it's worth thinking about how you might weave a few simple supporting points into your final coup de grace. An employer or interviewer who is keen on you, who has satisfied they've been through the proper processes, and who knows or believes that you have other options, will sometimes give you the job offer there and then if you ask firmly and professionally for the job.

Which of course saves a lot of time for all concerned, so if you feel like asking for the job - any job in fact - the approach is not limited to sales and commercial positions - then go for it. The best time to negotiate salary is after receiving a job offer, and importantly before you accept a job offer - at the point when the employer clearly wants you for the job, and is keen to have your acceptance of the job offer.

A strong stance at this stage is your best chance to provide the recruiting manager the justification to pay you something outside the employer's normal scale. Do not attempt to resolve a salary issue before receiving a job offer - there's no point. Defer the matter - say you'll need to discuss salary in due course, but that there's obviously no need to do so until and unless the company believes you are the right person for the job.

A job and package comprise of many different things - unless the difference between what's offered and needed is enormous in which case the role is simply not appropriate both sides should look at all of the elements before deciding whether salary is actually an issue or not. The chances of renegotiating salary after accepting a new job, and certainly after starting a new job, are remote - once you accept the offer you've effectively made the contract, including salary, and thereafter you are subject to the organization's policies, process and natural inertia.

A compromise agreement on salary, in the event that the employer cannot initially employ you at the rate you need, is to agree in writing a guaranteed raise, subject to completing a given period of service, say 3 or 6 months. In which case avoid the insertion of 'satisfactory' describing the period of service as this can never actually be measured and therefore fails to provide certainty that the raise will be given. If you are recruiting a person who needs or demands more money or better terms than you can offer, then deal with the matter properly before the candidate accepts the job - changing pay or terms after this is very much more difficult.

If you encourage a person to accept pay and terms that are genuinely lower than they deserve or need, by giving a vague assurance of a review sometime in the future, you will raise expectations for something that will be very difficult to deliver, and therefore storing up a big problem for the future. Additional tips and techniques relating to salary negotiations at job interviews.

At second interviews, unsuitable applicants should have been screened out by this stage. For certain jobs a decision will be made to offer the job after the second interviews; recruitments for senior positions may proceed to third interviews. Second interview questions should be deep and probing about the candidate and the candidate's approach to work.

The questions should concern detailed and testing examples and scenarios specific to the particular job, asking how the candidate would deal with them. This is to discover as reliably as possible how the candidate would approach the job, and what type of person they are - the interviewer needs to be sure they will get on with the candidate you and that they will fit in well.

The interviewer should also probe the type of management that the candidate responds to and doesn't, and how the candidate would work with other people and departments, giving specific examples and scenarios. Tests and practical exercises using actual work material or examples can be used, which enable a practical assessment of the candidate's real style, ability, knowledge and experience.

The candidate can be asked to prepare and give a short presentation about themselves, or how they would approach the job or a particular challenge. This could involve the use of certain equipment and materials, particularly if such ability is to be required in the job. The interviewer should also try to get to know more about the candidate as a person - to be as sure as possible that this is the right person for the situation; the interview approach should be probing and gaining practical evidence, proof, of suitability.

A good second interview should establish as reliably as possible the candidate's suitability and ability for the specific needs of the job, which includes the work, relationships, aspirations, and personal background. There is nothing wrong in the candidate asking the organisation prior to the interview what to plan and prepare for in the second interview - interviewers should regard this as a positive sign, and it may help the candidate to give some clear information on what to expect and prepare for.

Certain senior jobs recruitments will involve a lunch or dinner so that the interviewer and other senior managers or executives can see you in relaxed mode. This is an excellent way to discover more about the personality of an applicant. Group selection normally a half-day or even whole day - see below - is a very good alternative to conventional one-to-one interviews after first interview stage.

Group selection puts all the candidates together for a series of activities and tasks, which can then be observed by a panel of interviewers. Individuals can be asked to prepare and give presentations, and various other exercises relevant to the job. One-to-one interviews follow later in the day when the group has been reduced in numbers.

Group selection takes a lot longer than a conventional second interview and all candidates should be notified as to the process and outline agenda. If you are particularly keen to be offered a job and wish to increase your profile and chances of receiving a job offer after attending interview, you can follow up an interview with a letter or email and then a phone call to reinforce your commitment and qualities for the job.

The sooner the better. Often jobs are offered to the most passionate and determined applicants, so this should be the feeling that your follow-up should try to convey, without giving the impression of desperation or crawling. You should seek to focus your follow-up letter or email on the key performance aspects in the role that the interviewer believes are required for the successful applicant.

Introduction to Topic Analysis

This type of follow-up enables you to show that you have considered and developed your thinking after the interview a desirable attribute , and also enables you to re-emphasise your claim to the opportunity, bringing your name to the front of the interviewer's mind again. A good follow-up letter or email also enables you to demonstrate that you are persistent, professional, interested, possess relevant capabilities, recognise what the requirements and priorities are, are keen, and can sell yourself in a determined manner, that probably the other applicants will not do.

Interviewers also respond well to applicants who really like the company, especially if your reasons coincide with the reasons that the interviewer likes the company too, so it can help if your follow-up 'resonates' with the feelings of the interviewer about what is required for the role. From the interviewer's perspective - if you are an interviewer or decision-maker who receives a good follow-up letter from an enthusiastic interviewee - I recommend you give the applicant extra credit and consideration. They are demonstrating many of the most relevant qualities that you are seeking.

I really want this job, so I'm taking the liberty of re-stating why I think you should choose me:. It is very important that these points demonstrate that you have clearly understood and can deliver - specific measurable things if possible - what they need for the role, for example:. You might have seen better qualified applicants, or people with more relevant experience, but when it comes down to it, it's the person with the most passion and determination who is able to make a real difference.

I'd urge you to give me the chance to prove I am that person. Persistence often pays off, especially in roles which require someone who can get results by making things happen, which applies to most roles in business and organisations these days, and certainly all management roles. When you follow-up your own job interview with passion, determination and expertise, the interviewer sees real evidence of how you can perform in the job itself. The interview follow-up letter, email and phone call is therefore a great opportunity for you to demonstrate many of your attributes for real, in a way that will raise your profile, re-state your credentials and understanding of the role's requirements, and thereby create a clear separation between you and the other job candidates.

And while the methodology is especially important for recruiting rare individuals, it actually applies to the successful attraction and recruitment of all staff. The methodology for attracting and recruiting good quality employees follows basic marketing principles. This might seem obvious to marketing and advertising folk, and even to some sales-people, but commonly recruitment in organizations is a function of HR Human Resources department, or in smaller companies the task is perhaps handled by an office manager. Not all HR people and office managers think like marketeers, and the world is a better place because of this, nevetheless:.

If you want to recruit the best possible staff, you must approach the activity as if you were marketing a product or service. First, it might help if you consider the elements of the recruitment process in terms of marketing language:. If you are an HR person and all this sounds a little daunting, please be assured that it is not rocket science - it's very logical - and you might have some brilliant marketeers in your organization who can help with the process.

The essential ideas of marketing and selling apply very directly to attracting and recruiting good quality employees. Crucially, the foundations - the philosophy, organizational integrity, values, culture, etc - must be right and good, otherwise you are building on sand. The best employees gravitate towards, and tend to perform best for, the best employers. If your organization struggles to recruit and retain excellent people it might be little to do with the job or the pay, and conversely, good ethical caring organizations will generally attract and retain great people even if the job and the money are not the most competitive.

The Group Selection recruitment method also called recruitment assessment centres or recruitment assessment days offers several advantages over conventional one-to-one interviewing, which because of the limitations of one-to-one interviews, many interviewers find a very unsatisfactory method in recruitment and selection.

Group Selection enables a number of people from the organisation to observe a number of job candidates, as they go through a series of specially designed activities. Group Selection also offers the recruiting organisation an excellent opportunity to present the company and the job in a very professional way, thus appealing to and attracting the best candidates. Also, the unsuccessful candidates leave the process with a very positive impression of the organisation and the experience as a whole. Group Selection also enables the the best people to show themselves to be the best, often working on real job-related scenarios, which removes much of the guesswork about people's true abilities.

One-to-one interviews tend to favour the 'professional interviewee' types, who present very well, but who might then fail to deliver - 'all mouth and trousers' as the expression has it. The further group selection ideas below will help expand possibilities for this super process. Screening interviews are useful in short-listing candidates for group selections. For a senior job group selection, screening interviews and psychometric assessments are recommended to shortlist candidates.

Group selection activities are by far the most reliable way to see what people are really like, provided the process is carefully planned, managed and facilitated. If you'd like advice about Group Selection methods or designing a Group Selection day please get in touch. Here's an outline of the process:. Many of these principles are important for any sort of recruitment process - not just for group selections. Also, many of the group selection ideas can be adapted and incorporated into traditional recruitment and interview processes.

This process grid illustrates the point. In both cases - conventional interviewing or group selection recruitment - the first step assessment specification is crucial.

What Is Tact?

Everything else is built on this. If there is no assessment specification, or if it is flawed, then the event will be flawed and so will the outcomes. The structure and activities of group selection days are flexible. Keep to the important principles and process above, but other than that try to be innovative and creative, and always aim to ensure that the recruitment process is pleasurable and positively memorable for all job applicants.

When you communicate with and organize job applicants you are continually presented with opportunities to give a powerful and positive impression of your organization. Treat everyone as if they were a customer, and the experience will produce various good outcomes in addition to successful recruitment. How you design and structure your group selection day depends largely on the recruitment situation and the characteristics or profile - the sort of person - you are seeking: their skills, experience, the demands of the role, the culture of the employer department and organisation, the role's priorities and success measures.

They are not attached to specific assessment characteristics, measures or outcomes, which must be identified before deciding on suitable activities. Your first step is therefore to understand and specify what your needs are and how to measure when someone meets those needs. Then you can start designing group selection or assessment centre activities and the format of the event, be it a day or a half-day.

There are no fixed rules - a half-day is more suitable for junior roles. Very important roles might justify more than a day - or maybe even a weekend. This is a simple statement, but a very important principle: You will more reliably find the right person if you first know exactly the sort of person you are seeking, and how to assess that they meet the selection criteria. When you understand the gaps or failings in your recruitment, then you know some useful areas to focus on in order to improve your methods.

In addition to filling the gaps and addressing the weaknesses of your current methods you must look at the role s being recruited in detail, and establish profiles so you can clearly define and communicate to others what you are seeking. Defining a role or person-specification can be challenging, but approached logically it's possible to define anything.

It's like the 'talent' question - which especially relates to graduate recruitment and young-person recruitment:. You define something by understanding it and describing it, and breaking it down into elements or component parts: a profile of some sort that is clear and meaningful and usable to those involved. So, to run a successful group selection day or recruitment assessment centre, you must first create your assessment specification.

Define and describe the person you need - using as many elements as necessary - and then attach some measures to each element. Having identified all the criteria that would define a successful new starter for the given role s , you can then design appropriate and corresponding assessment methods. This assessment specification can refer to as many perspectives as you need - personality, skills, attitude, experience, values and philosophy, emotional maturity, situation and circumstances - anything relevant to and required by the role and employer.

Some elements of the specification person profile will be mandatory 'must have' - others could be optional. You could even use a TNA training needs analysis spreadsheet for organizing the assessments and results. The process of assessment according to defined elements is basically the same for recruitment as it is for development appraisals and training needs. How you structure the person profile or assessment specification is up to you. Ideally it should enables you to attach measures and methods by which to assess whether the measures are met.

Having established your assessment specification or person profile or checklist and measures , suitably broken down into elements or parts - you can design suitable methods, activities, sessions, etc. You might find the training planning format useful for this, especially to understand the process of analysing a capability and then attaching a method of assessment or development to it. Again, the process of assessment in recruitment is very close to the process of training design assessment and development.

All require understanding of the whole person or role, breaking this down into manageable elements, attaching parameters or measures, and then designing activities or methods of assessment or development. It's worth remembering, because it assessment and development are closely linked, that job applicants attending a good group selection or recruitment assessment will also derive a development benefit from the experience. We cannot fail to learn and develop when we undertake good assessment activities. Keep this in mind. It will help you to design a high-quality and beneficial event. The aim of designing and running a good group selection event - as well as identifying and successfully recruiting the best job candidates for your vacancies - is for all those attending to leave with the feeling that they had a great day, that they learned and developed a lot about themselves, and that you are a wonderful positive employer.

Achieve this, and applicants will always look for your vacancies, and they'll tell all their friends too what a fantastically well-organized and positive experience it was - even if they never got the job. Here are some ideas for creating magnificent, memorable, beneficial and successful group selections and recruitment assessment centre events.

As with the principles above about creating a person profile and assessment specification before deciding on the assessment activities, these ideas are not all restricted to group selections. Many of the concepts are adaptable and transferable to conventional recruitment interviewing processes. I emphasise again the importance of first creating your assessment specification selection criteria or person profile or checklist and measures - whatever you call it before you design your activities. Here are the ideas. Fixing current weaknesses in recruitment - the issues and characteristics that are typically never uncovered - is a great way to start thinking of what activities to put into a group selection event.

Seek applicant feedback especially from unsuccessful applicants as to what skills, capabilities, potential were not exposed or explored by the day's activities, or by conventional interviews. Additionally, conduct exit interviews especially when new starters leave soon after joining. What mistakes were made? What was missed during the recruitment stage? Discovering weaknesses with your current methods will help you improve and develop your assessment specification.

When you run any recruitment process you are effectively a supplier, and the applicants are effectively your customers. You must aim to delight them - to have them leave with a good feeling - that they have been fairly treated. This partly achieved by planning and organizing an interesting, dynamic and developmental experience, but mainly it results from giving people clear opportunities to demonstrate how they can best meet the specification for the job.

By providing a complete process aligned to the full specification, you improve the clarity and justification of your decision-making for the unsuccessful applicants. The unsuccessful then understand better why they did not succeed and are less likely to bear ill will.

Paths cross often. Job applicants are all potential customers. Make friends. Be good and fair to people.

How does Topic Analysis work

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Consider that different personalities and learning styles respond in different ways - and so need different ways to demonstrate their capabilities. Again these principles apply beyond group selections - they apply to conventional interviews too. Consider that different personalities, communications styles, and learning styles among people will cause some assessment activities to be easier or more advantageous for some people than others. In the future technology will make it possible to tailor assessment tasks and activities according to individual personality.

How far you can explore this currently will vary according to your resourcefulness and access to modern methods and systems, etc. All the skills and experience in the world won't matter if the applicant's emotional foundation is seriously or temporarily impaired or vulnerable. Emotional problems can often appear as force of character, ultra-competitiveness, egocentricity, wit, wackiness, eccentricity, workaholism, etc. Be careful. You want someone who will make a difference - but a good difference. Conversely: genuinely stable, well-balanced and psychologically robust people are an asset to any organization, pretty well regardless of the role, skills, ambition, and natural personality style preferences.

Exuding more testosterone than Genghis Khan on acid might be good for the ratings on the Dragons Den or The Apprentice I refer to the panel not the contestants , but would you really want to manage someone like that in your organization, never mind the damage they'd do to the good folk around them? Entrepreneurial egomania and organizational employment rarely combine happily. Having a good reference point for emotional balance and maturity also helps remind us during the recruitment process that life and work are thank goodness becoming more civilized.

Successful workers, good managers and great leaders these days are civilized and emotionally mature. People with problems can be very successful entrepreneurs, and they can make a big short-term impact in an organization, but usually they create a lot of fall-out. Emotionally immature people again this is not necessarily age-related tend to create mess, casualties, and at some stage need help themselves when problems can no longer be masked. The egocentric entrepreneur will typically create their own passive environment their equivalent of a padded cell some might say , but such tendencies often typified by bullying or temper tantrums are extremely damaging to organizations where there are other concerns like staff, customers and suppliers.

You don't need these extreme characters if they come with emotional baggage: they don't possess sufficient reserves to really care about you and their fellow workers. So don't kid yourself that a bit of madness or psychosis can be good for a modern organization; it isn't. As an aside, this invites a fascinating question: at what point does extreme personality or questionable emotional balance fall within the bounds of disability and equality legislation?

Thankfully we have not arrived at the point yet where rejecting an applicant for reasons of personality or attitude could be deemed unlawful. No doubt a test-case will arise before too long. Whatever, however you do it, any group selection should address emotional maturity. I repeat it is not an age thing.

It's whether the person is grounded, reasonable, thoughtful, balanced - you know: a grown-up. It's simple but often overlooked. It provides a super learning and self-awareness discussion framework. If you are proposing to go into some depth with people ensure the session facilitated by an expert or trained counsellor, appropriate to the personality theory used. There are many wonderful TA practitioners who will be able to help with this aspect - whether from an activities or assessment viewpoint, or both.

If I could do one thing in group selection it would be to explore emotional maturity 'grown-upness' we might say - because, irrespective of age, in my experience emotional maturity is the greatest attribute for sustaining successful work and contribution to any modern organization. As the modern age and competitive pressures require organizations and their people to be ever-more self-managing, the 'grown-upness' attribute will become even more significant.

You will gather by now that I consider one of the great opportunities at a group selection event is to identify and avoid recruiting emotionally immature people. Approach the subject with care however. At a simple level simply facilitate a group discussion about emotional maturity and observe people's contributions and reactions. Helpfully emotional balance and maturity links with the next area - integrity and ethics - which is easier to incorporate within group selection and assessment activities. Integrity and ethics - together a crucial factor for sustainable success at work in the modern age.

Integrity, ethics, compassion, humanity are like emotional maturity fundamental to sustainable success in modern organisations. Therefore find a way to explore these values and philosophical factors somehow at any assessment centre. Incidentally emotional maturity and ethics, integrity, humanity are linked by the simple concept of consideration for others - the opposite of selfishness and greed, to put it another way.

Of course these factors ethics, integrity, compassion, etc are only relevant to your recruitment if the work environment and corporation require and aspire to these things. On a complex level, ethics and integrity can be difficult to measure and judge, but at the level we need to assess, it's simple. We all basically know the difference between right and wrong - or the difference between a good act and a selfish one - and the difference between the truth and a lie.

Telling a lie in order to gain or save business, or to cover up a mistake is not acceptable. This isn't about having a doctorate in morality - it's basic integrity. Striking exactly the right balance in very difficult questions is not always impossible - there will always be ethical questions for which there is no right answer, usually because the problem is actually rooted way back when someone else got a far simpler decision wrong.

Your aim however is not to resolve the wrongs of the world, nor to find new recruits with such a capability. But you do need to determine whether your new recruits are the right side of ethical and truthful given the standards set by your own organization. Ethics and integrity are crucial in the modern age of work and business, and therefore should be part of modern selection criteria.

Moreover today staff at all levels should know that the organization is honest and ethical, and that the organization expects the same of its people. Simple methods of addressing and exploring these issues at a group selection assessment day are for example:.

A short note about ambition and money is appropriate: Being competitive and financially ambitious and striving for status and responsibility does not make a person unethical. There is a point however at which a person's determination and method of pursuit causes damage, harm, upset or risk to other people or the wider environment, and I suggest that this is when the ethics alarm bells begin to ring.

Each has a different perspective and value. Some systems are quite similar, especially if based on the same basic psychological theory. Work with a provider or system that will be helpful and constructive to the recruitment process, which means being transparent and inclusive, not secret and aloof, as some systems and providers can be. Always involve the delegates in explaining the system and how it works and what it means. Remember everyone should leave the event with a positive feeling - that they've learned and developed.

People are strong in different ways. People approach tasks and responsibilities in different ways. There is not a single 'right' profile. Used well, psychometrics help us all to see where and how people including ourselves can be most effective. Graphology hand-writing analysis makes a fascinating session, and is revealing in many ways.

As with any specialised session, ensure you involve a suitably qualified expert to facilitate the session, analysis, feedback and follow-up as appropriate. Importantly, avoid creating the impression and of course the reality too that recruitment decisions are largely based on psychometric testing. It is sensible to decide before the event the 'weighting' of psychometrics and to convey this to the delegates so they know it's just a part of the picture.

It is not sensible to reject any applicant on the basis of psychometrics alone, and it is daft to give any applicant the impression that this has occurred in their case. It does happen.. Projects and tasks based on work scenarios enable practical demonstration and evidence of capabilities, style, etc. You can issue work-related tasks on the day, however you can achieve greater value from issuing practical assignments formulation of plans, presentations, etc if you do so a week or two or three, depending on the situation, the job-role and the timescales before the actual day of the assessment or group selection.

This increases the range of the task content and the review to a lot more than if the assignment is issued on the day itself. This also gives the nervous or quieter applicants a fairer opportunity to shine without having to rely totally on the day's 'performance'. Stipulate the rules - especially if issuing a task in advance of the event - and especially to clarify the situation about seeking support or help for the assignment.

Since much modern work - especially management - is mostly dependent on initiative and resourcefulness and working with others, rather than one's own knowledge or personal ability, do not leap to the assumption that a task must be 'all their own work'. Whatever you deem it should be, as ever, clarify the expectations; and don't create any rules for which you will be completely unable to assess compliance, or the rule will be meaningless. Extending the tasks ideas - applicants can be asked to engage with existing staff and other people connected with the organization. You might for example be able to organize exercises or sessions connecting the applicants with staff around the organization.

Many failed recruitments are accompanied by a regret on both sides that ".. Who says you cannot get people to engage with potential colleagues as part of the recruitment process? You can if it makes sense. Incorporating reality and actual involvement - so that exercises deal with real situations and real people - can give rise to other helpful benefits elsewhere in the organization, if it's possible to do this. Provided it's not seen as an unwanted distraction, existing staff will also enjoy the participative involvement aspect, again if it's possible to organize.

The task doesn't need to be technically demanding if what you are assessing is the 'getalongability' factor, which can be so crucial for team-based roles. Simply, an information-gathering task or quiz about the company can provide an interesting and enjoyable basis for assessing how people actually engage with real colleagues and the real organizational environment.

Feedback from pre-selected staff can also be helpful and can be structured as an adaptation of the appraisal concept. Involvement and buy-in among existing staff for recruitment decisions - again especially for team-based roles - can be helpful beyond the recruitment itself. This modern integrated approach can help expose many unknowns that characterize traditional recruitment, in which selection decisions are largely based on hypothetical scenarios and questions. Recruitment becomes less risky the more we work with and observe candidates operating in real situations.

For the more adventurous, you can even extend the engagement to involve customers, suppliers, or even potential customers. If you want to put a toe in the water why not involve one or two key customers or suppliers in the day? This level of involvement has positive benefits for company relations too, outside of the recruitment. Imagine the strengthening of relations with suppliers and customers if the idea were to grow and you were to reciprocate and help each other with assessment days..

There are many other aspects and ideas that you can include in a group selection day or event. Above I've focused on the more innovative aspects. There are several basic elements of the day which need to be considered too, briefly summarised here. Again, while this section is mainly focused on group selection assessment events, the principles and many of the ideas also transfer to conventional interview recruitment:.

Group selection assessment recruitment events offer dramatically more scope for selling the job, and for finding the right candidate s. Your final selection decision can only ever be as good as your definition of the person you are seeking. From the interviewer's standpoint when writing to unsuccessful interviewees, it's essential that you do not write anything that could carry a liability for claims of discrimination, libel or defamation of character. If you are the interviewing manager or have the responsibility for sending interviews rejection letters and have any doubt about local policies and laws concerning interviews rejection letters, consult with your HR department before writing and sending job interviews letters to unsuccessful candidates.

Generally the safest kindest way to write an interview rejection letter is to simply say thank you, and to state that the reason for the interviewee not being successful is due to there being better qualified candidates. Below is a sample thank you rejection letter. See the notes below also relating to more complex and positive rejections of job applications, notably for additional guidance about giving constructive feedback to unsuccessful applicants.

Thank you for attending the interview or group selection event with us on date at location for the position of position. While you presented yourself extremely well and impressed us very much, I regret that we are not on this occasion able to offer you the position, due to there being other better qualified or more suitably qualified candidates. I thank you for the interest and enthusiasm you have shown and wish you all the best for the future. Here's a job interviews 'holding' letter, to be used when the selection decision is delayed for some reason, when it is important to acknowledge and thank the interviewee and keep them informed and interested in the position:.

You presented yourself extremely well and impressed us very much, and the interview process is still ongoing. We will be in touch as soon as possible to inform you whether we can offer you the position or not or when and if we will need to see you again. I thank you for the interest and enthusiasm you have shown thus far. Should you have any questions meanwhile please let me know.

Use or adapt these examples and ideas when informing job applicants that they have been unsuccessful in applying for job interviews, or after unsuccessfully attending job interviews if you are a pioneering manager working outside of the HR department you should agree things first with your HR department.

This is a challenging area that many employers will not be able, or desire, to explore. Which is fine. You'll get around to it when you are good and ready First of all, you are not obliged to give a reason for the rejection. It is not a good thing to concoct a reason, not least because people aren't stupid think back to your own experiences when you've been given a flimsy excuse or reason , and obviously you should avoid writing anything to a job applicant that could be regarded as discriminatory or insulting.

However, you should try to add a positive aspect to rejection letters if you can. It's good to do so, especially when someone has clearly tried their best. It's a wicked world - why not try to make it little kinder.

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People remember when they have been treated well; they tell their friends, and they'll remember when and if you meet them again one day. What goes around comes around, as they say. Employers routinely reject people without a care for the rejected person's sensitivities; it's an assumption passed down from manager to successor.

However, a little consideration can help a lot to reduce the demoralizing effect of receiving a rejection letter If the application or interview is a good one, but not quite good enough to succeed, it often makes sense to keep the person's details for possible future reference. If you plan to do this then tell the person.

It's a positive aspect, albeit within a rejection letter. Having said this, don't just say it for the sake of it. Particularly forward-thinking employers and able managers can offer to give applicants constructive feedback on their unsuccessful applications and failed interviews too , and this again is an option that you can choose or not, in which case be mindful as ever about potential discrimination and defamatory risks.

Postal or telephone feedback is possible, each of which of course have implications for time and control, and costs, for the employer - it's your choice. If you offer feedback ensure it is fair and that you establish a process for identifying a few constructive points, giving them, and recording them, which can quite easily be incorporated into the normal recruitment process and documentation. You will after all have made the rejection on specific grounds, rather than on a whim, in which case, it's a logical step to then communicate these points back to the applicant.

One can easily argue that it's only fair to do so. A simple way to do this is to create a simple list of the most common reasons for rejecting people, and to indicate on the list the reason s applicable to each person failing to progress. Giving positive feedback verbally or in writing, outside of a controlled list of reasons, requires a certain level of skill, so that the feedback is not perceived as a criticism, and so that the discussion or communication whether verbal or a written response remains adult-to-adult. Written feedback is safer, but verbal feedback is better, if handled well.

The risk is that the feedback leads to defence or argument from the recipient, so it's important to accentuate the positive and be objective and factual, for example: "Clearer presentation of your qualifications would have enabled us to make a fuller assessment," or "The application would have stood a better chance if it had been more neatly presented," or "We needed to see more evidence that you understood the communications and relationships requirements of the role.

Here's an example of a feedback template which can be used by managers who perhaps do not possess sufficient ability to work without one. Giving one or a few points of feedback like this keeps the feedback factual, constructive, and provides the person with some helpful pointers for improving applications that they'll make in the future. Receiving feedback enables you to improve your recruitment and interviews processes.

Also, allowing the other person to give some feedback helps them to feel better about their experience, and also leaves them with a much more positive impression about you, instead of remembering you simply as the employer who rejected them. Like any feedback about organisational performance this is valuable stuff, so seek it out. It will also lead to a more balanced feedback discussion, allowing the unsuccessful candidate to make some of their own points, which most folk find quite an uplifting and pleasing experience.

In order to offer and give constructive feedback a lot depends on the scale and the size of the business, the people handling the recruitment, the type of jobs being advertised, the type of people applying, the market or trade sector, the employer's attitude towards PR, and not least, how you feel about trying to do good and helping people wherever possible. Aside from simply being a good thing to do for people, a lot of goodwill and positive reactions result from offering and giving good constructive feedback.

Unlike most aspects of the recruitment process, you're giving a little bit back, not just taking, rejecting, and leaving people feeling bereft, which is the common application rejection experience. The employment and recruitment world is a cruel one, so it's good to make it a little happier and more helpful if you can. Giving constructive feedback to unsuccessful applicants and interviewees is also particularly good to do when dealing with candidates who are already employed within the organisation.

This is for obvious reasons, not least: they'll be more likely to stay motivated and feel positive about the organisation; they'll be more likely to present their next application in a better way; and they'll better understand why they didn't succeed on this occasion and hopefully be less likely to blame others for not having succeeded. I am sorry that on this occasion you have not been successful, despite presenting yourself very well. When we receive a particularly good application that is not successful - as yours is - we offer to give the applicant some constructive feedback about their application, and we would like to make this offer to you.

For interviewers and interviewees, much of the information above in the main job interviews article is relevant to job promotion interviews. These tips chiefly focus on interviews rather than group selections. Attending group selections for job promotion is a different matter, which I'll comment on briefly now:.

Group selection enables the employer's selection panel to observe behaviour and interaction in a group situation. Here are the sorts of behaviours that impress when demonstrated by group selection candidates: responsibility, integrity, leadership, maturity, enthusiasm, organisation, planning, creativity, noticing and involving quiet members of the group, calmness under pressure, and particularly discovering and using other people's abilities in order for the team to achieve given tasks.

For interviewees, the same principles apply as in new employer job interviews. Interviewers commonly assess interviewees according to their own personal style and approach - people like people like them. For example: friendly people like friendly people; results-driven people like results-driven people; dependable reliable passive people like dependable reliable passive people; and detailed correct people like detailed correct people. As an interviewer, when interviewing try to see the interviewee according to their own frame of reference not your own - you will make a fairer assessment.

As an interviewee be aware that even the most objective interviewer - even if aided by psychometric job profiles and applicant test results - will always tend to be more attracted to applicants who are like them, rather than applicants who are unlike them; it's human nature. When as an interviewee you attend promotion interviews, your answers should be orientated to match the style preferences of the interviewer. Try to see things in the way they see them, and express your answers and ideas in language and terms that they will relate to and understand.

Rebels and mould-breakers are rarely promoted because they are seen as a threat or liability, so if you have rebellious tendencies it's a good idea to tone them down a little for the promotion interview. In the rare case that a distinctly mould-breaking individual is required for the role, such a requirement will be stated, then by all means go for it, all guns blazing. As the candidate, be able to demonstrate how well you understand the business and the organization. Avoid the common tendency to think that internal candidates already know what they need to and therefore have a better chance than, for example, an external candidate.

If an external candidate has done their research they will impress the interviewer more than an internal candidate who hasn't. If it isn't a requirement then it's a big advantage over another candidate who hasn't thought outside of the box, so to speak. If appropriate, your ideas can be fresh and innovative especially if the interviewer is innovative and creative themselves , but you must above all be able to demonstrate a clear grasp of 'cause and effect', and the importance of achieving a suitable return on investment or effort.

Promotion almost always involves having responsibility for making decisions about the use of time and resources. Interviewers need to be convinced that you understand how to handle this responsibility - to identify priorities, to focus effort in the right direction, to manage efforts productively - as if you were using your own money. Demonstrating huge personal commitment and enthusiasm, together with complete and utter loyalty to your boss and the organization, are always essential factors for successful promotion interviews.

Loyalty and commitment are essential. The interviewer must be able to trust you to the extent that they will stake their own reputation on your commitment and ability. The ability to adapt and be flexible as priorities and circumstances change around you, is also essential for promotion into most supervisory and management roles. Interviewers will not promote children or people with baggage or issues - interviewers promote mature grown-up people. People who will lighten the management burden, not add to it. As an interviewee it's good to prepare your references in advance, and give the interviewer a list of your referees with names, positions, employers details, and all possible contact details.

Try to identify and agree cooperation in advance from referees who will be happy to give you a positive reference, and in so doing, who will support your personality, skills, performance and job history claims. Provide as many referees as you need to cover the important aspects of your performance and employment history, plus any specific critical requirements of the new job accreditation, record, training, vetting, etc. A healthy list of referees would normally be between three and five people.

It seems a lot, but it's more impressive than just a couple; it shows you've thought about it beforehand, and it builds in a bit of leeway for when people cannot be contacted or fail to respond quickly for any reason. Generally the more senior and credible your referees the better. It's perfectly acceptable to list one or two referees from your private life rather than work, especially if they have a job or status that carries important responsibility councillors, police, etc.

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If you know that a particularly significant and favourable referee might be difficult to contact, ask them to provide you with a 'to whom it may concern' open reference letter as to your character and history, signed by them, on letterhead - and preferably use and keep hold of the original copy - ask the interviewer to take a photocopy and give you back the original. As an employer - employers should always follow up and check successful job interview candidates' references.

Not to do so is irresponsible, especially if recruiting for jobs which carry serious responsibilities, such as working with children, disabled people, sensitive data, money, valuables, etc. The extent and depth to which references should be checked depend on the situation and the referees given by the job applicant.

Certainly make job offers conditional to satisfactory checking of references, and if as an employer you are not happy about the referees provided then ask for others. Checking references can be a very sensitive area, so care needs to be used. Many referees will not be comfortable providing personal information about a person, not least due to fear of defaming someone and the liabilities concerned. Postal reference checking is an alternative to telephoning, although many referees feel less comfortable effectively making a written record of negative comments, and may be more forthcoming in a telephone conversation.

Refusal by a referee to provide a reference about someone is obviously not a helpful sign, and considerable positive feedback from reliable alternative referees would normally be required to proceed with a job offer following such a response. Bear in mind also that the referee may have their own agenda.

Take care to interpret carefully any personal comments which might stem from personality clash. Try to concentrate on facts with evidenced examples rather than opinions. And for everyone, irrespective of satisfaction with interview answers, it is important to check some basic facts with past employers to ensure that the candidate has not been telling a pack of lies.

Seek local qualified advice from your HR department or advisor if in doubt, and also if you want to use a postal reference checking method, since most HR departments will already have a standard approved document for this purpose. You'll see various research and general advice concerning what best to wear for job interviews. The sort of clothes, styles, colours, shoes, make-up, accessories, etc. Standard rules for dress code at interviews are mostly common sense: be smart, coordinated, clean, tidy, relatively under-stated - however you can go further than merely adopting the standard recommendations to wear blue or grey suits, black shoes, white, cream, pale yellow and pastel colours for shirts and blouses; and to avoid black too funereal - unless your interview is with an undertakers , bow-ties, Elton John specs and deer-stalker hats.

Your best choice of dress, clothes, colours and style at interview should actually depend on the role and what surrounds it. For example, blue is thought by many people to represent formal business professionalism, which is fine for 'professional' job opportunities, but a smartly pressed blue business suit and crisp white shirt and tie won't help you much in an interview for a role requiring care and compassion, working outdoors in all weathers, managing down-to-earth labourers, being bubbly and creative, or teaching disaffected kids.

No-one ever got a job because of the way they dressed whereas lots of people fail to get jobs because 'something' about their appearance put the interviewer off - maybe just a bit - but enough not to get the job. Dress in a way that projects you personality, sure, but not to the extent that your appearance is inappropriate to the situation.

For adventurous dressers, especially going for jobs that might call for a spark of individuality, it can be a fine judgement. A lot depends on the interviewer too - innovative interviewers in industries that are amenable to flair will respond more positively to people who look different. But process-orientated decision-makers in structured environments will prefer people who look safer. If in doubt err on the safe side. Employers want people who can do the job - that's a given - but they also badly need people who will 'align' and fit in - people who can 'get the beat' of the organisation and department.

Empathy, trust, rapport, are all built on this initial platform, and what you wear and how you style yourself provide a great opportunity to start putting these foundations in place with the interviewer. Your interview dress code and visible styling help you show the interviewer it's a conscious and unconscious effect that you understand the organisation's style and how to fit in with it; that you can adapt appropriately to your environment - it's a valuable ability and there's nothing to be achieved by creating doubts in this area.

So when you next prepare for a job interview, try to orientate your choice of clothes and style to that of the employer, and also to the way the interviewer perceives the role. Consider also the type of job and the service sector, and particularly the personality, skills and behaviour that is required in the role: For example is the role mainly extravert or introvert, detailed or conceptual, creative or processing, conforming or innovative, etc.

If it helps you decide what to wear, think about how the existing employees dress. Does the employer have a conservative attitude and culture regarding dress code, or is the culture more modern and relaxed. It is as unhelpful for you to be dressed too conservatively and professionally as it is to be dressed not professionally enough. Try to get an idea of what people wear in the organisation so that you can reflect, within reason, the tone and style that fits in with the employer and the interviewer's expectations.

Do the men wear ties or not? Do the women wear suits? Do they 'dress down' on Fridays? This is particularly relevant if you happen to go for an interview at their offices on a dress-down Friday, when prior knowledge will help you to tone down a little and avoid sticking out like someone who doesn't fit in because they've not had the sense to find out before-hand.

Go see or ask if this will help you to feel more confident. On the point of going and seeing, especially if you know very little about the organisation, it's often helpful to get a feel of the place and the people before deciding that the organisation is actually worthy of your talents and commitment. This will also give you a good indication of their dress code, especially if you visit when people are arriving or leaving work. Lunch-time visits are interesting too - at the start of breaks and when people return to work. It's amazing what you can hear and learn sometimes, simply sitting in a busy reception for a few minutes or approaching a reception desk and asking for a brochure.

As regards your own appearance for interviews, consider any jewellery and other bodily adornments too. No-one ever got a job because they wore an outrageously big fat diamond ring, or a nineteen-ounce gold chain over their shirt, but I bet there'll have been plenty of people who've not got jobs because they've erred on the wrong side of this particular judgement. For the same reason, the number of body piercings displayed at interview is generally inversely proportional to the chances of successfully attracting a job offer, unless the job happens to be in a body piercing studio.

Tattoos are another interesting area. Attitudes to tattoos are certainly more tolerant than twenty years ago: even main board directors these days commonly will be hiding a little dragon or butterfly somewhere intimate on their person, however, given two equally-matched candidates at a job interview or group selection, the one with the short sleeves and naked ladies up each forearm is unlikely to get the nod. Safest bet - especially for customer-facing jobs literally face-to-face - is not to show too much tattooed skin at interviews unless you are very confident of yourself indeed. The reality unfortunately is that most people, including interviewers, will tend to judge you with their eyes, not least because interviewers know that their customers and staff will do too.

And, like all business decisions, recruitment decisions reflect on the people making them. Therefore when you are being interviewed the interviewer is not only deciding whether you can do the job, they are also deciding whether choosing you will reflect well or not on their own reputation.

The less you challenge this area the more likely they'll feel comfortable deciding in your favour. Use your common sense. So, if the role and the organisation calls for someone to conform and behave according to strong corporate style and expectations then dress accordingly. If the role and the organisation calls for individuality and fresh ideas then you have more licence to dress more individually, but still beware.

It remains that most employers and interviewers, whatever they might say about welcoming fresh blood and challenging new ideas, will always tend to err on the side of caution. Interviewers generally don't knowingly take risks - they prefer safe options - safe non-threatening people, who appear and dress in a safe and non-threatening way.

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It sits there waiting to be sought out, waiting to be put into action. Continue reading "The Secret of Genius".

What is NLP? Neuro Linguistic Programming

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