Why You Aren’t Getting Job Offers
Recently I’ve heard from a couple prospective clients who are getting interviews, but they are not getting any job offers. Getting interviews is great! But there are certain factors that may be at work keeping the decision makers from presenting that much desired job offer.
Here are a few things to consider before your next interview.
Right Audience. Right Fit. Wrong Audience. Wrong Fit.
Is your resume written to the right audience? One of the prospective clients I spoke with had received numerous interviews. As we continued to talk, it became clear the interviews she was getting were not for her ideal position or at the level she desired. In this case the interviewers probably knew this and didn’t follow through because she was overqualified. Her resume was not written to the types of positions for which she was the best fit. Before sending your resume out, examine it to ensure it is tailored to the position you’re targeting. Or you could consult a seasoned resume writer who will be able to quickly identify how to tweak your resume so you start getting right fit interviews.
If you’ve gotten to the third interview, that is a very good sign. It means you’re hitting the right notes, you have the right chemistry with the interviewers and you’re considered a very strong candidate. At this point the potential employer is running a background check before hiring you. If there is anything from your past involving a former employer either filed by the employer or you, you should disclose it before the company runs the background check. Being up front will allay any concerns about your integrity and give you an opportunity to get in front of the story because any lawsuits or other issues of public record more than likely will show up on the background check. Some employers will appreciate the heads up and decide to move forward. Others will not. Failing to disclose any past issues will definitely shut the door on any job offer, however.
No one likes false advertising. A great, accomplishment rich resume gets you the interview, but if you can’t deliver on the brand presented in your cover letter, resume and LinkedIn profile a Hiring Manager isn’t going to take you past the first interview. It is easy to over exaggerate on a resume or fail to present yourself as the outstanding problem solver, driver of sales or expert software engineer you indicated you were on your resume. While bullet points should always be concise yet meaningful, as a candidate you should be prepared to tell a story about every bullet point to demonstrate your expertise and qualifications. Nothing says false advertising more than the inability to elaborate or articulate your level of experience, knowledge, skills and expertise. If nerves are a factor, consider running through a mock interview where you can work on your presentation and answers the night before.
Oftentimes when working with clients, I challenge them on the stories they tell me in the resume writing process so they’re clear and I’m clear on the reality of what happened so it gets depicted accurately on the resume. I also challenge my clients with additional questions if I think they may be asked to elaborate on a particular bullet point or explain why they are a good fit for the role. This prepares them for the tough questions and possibly gets them to reconsider whether certain stories deserve space on the resume. Rule of thumb, if you aren’t comfortable telling a story about a bullet point leave it off the resume.
An oft overlooked fact is that interviews boil down to chemistry between the candidate and the interviewer(s). This means you can be the most qualified candidate on paper and in person, but if you don’t have chemistry with the interviewer(s) you won’t be hired.
It’s okay. If the chemistry wasn’t right for them it is better you weren’t hired. You want to work at place where there you have collegial synergy and alignment.
How well did you prepare?
You’ll interview much better if you take the time to prepare for your interview by reviewing the resume and cover letter you submitted for that particular job posting and by studying up on the company. Reviewing the resume harkens back to my comments about false advertising. Make sure you’re the person you painted yourself to be in the resume and cover letter. Doing your homework about the company and preparing for your interview is going to show and convince your interviewer(s) you are serious candidate and a good fit for their team.
I had a client interview for a large, well-known tech company. My client was a superstar, very talented, but he was asked a simple question that he did not know the answer to and it derailed his opportunity with this company. Had he done a bit more prep beforehand, he would have aced the answer. The question was, “Who is our company’s CEO?” That is public record and very easy information to find out in advance. If you are truly interested in working at a company, study everything you can about the company culture, who their leadership team is, what big projects or initiatives they are focused on, etc. Knowing this will be set you apart from 90% of the other candidates.
Following this advice and honestly assessing your previous interviews will give you insight into what tweaks needs to be made to start turning those interviews into job offers.
The best is yet to come,