Could You Have Done Better in Your Last Job? |

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter offers a way to turn this question into an opportunity to talk about your successes.

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Today, I want to talk with you about another 1 of those tough interviews.

Could you have done better in your job or your last job that you actually did?

It's a goofy question just like most of the more but you have to take it seriously. What they are trying to find out is whether you will go into, "true confessions," talking in detail about how your psyche works, how you made terrible mistakes that will really disqualify you from consideration in this job.

So what you want to be doing is not going into a lengthy explanation. What you want to do is, very simply, respond by saying, "Huh, interesting question (break contact with their eyes as you speak)." This gives the impression that you are actually thinking about their answer. Speak slowly and deliberately, as you continue your answer.

"Huh, interesting question. In retrospect, I'm sure there are some things I could have done better but I can't think of anything of major consequence that I could have done any better." From there, you might go into some of the bigger achievements that you had. You can list some of your bigger successes now and say like you are really pondering the question in a theatrical kind of voice.

"Huh, interesting question. I can't think of anything of a major major record of divinity better with. I'm sure there's some things I could have. What I did and at my last firm is I outsold all the other salespeople (or was number 2 in sales)" or "I supported one of the largest account that we had," or "I help develop this incredibly successful system," or "I always delivered everything on time and within budget." You talk about some of your successes there.

They go on by saying, "I'm sure there is some meeting I attended that, maybe, I wasn't as prepared for, as I could've been. But, in terms of the things that were major, I had a great track record there. My references will back me up in that statement."

Do you notice what you're doing? You're turning your answer into the appearance of reflection but you are actually well prepared for it. In this way, you can talk about some of your successes while appearing to be pondering some of the awkward things you might have contended with.


Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a career and leadership coach who worked as a recruiter for what more than 40 years. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 1100 episodes, “Job Search Radio,” “and his newest show, “No BS Coaching Advice” and is a member of The Forbes Coaches Council.

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