What Is More Important– Skills or Presence? | JobSearchTV.com

The full question is, “When conducting an interview with potential employees, what weighs in more between an applicant that has more skill-set (experiences) but lacks that wow-factor (impression) during an interview and vice versa?”

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I'm Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter. I'm the head coach for JobSearchCoachingHQ.com. That's a site with curated information that you can watch, listen to or read to help you find work more quickly.

I received a question from someone that I thought was interesting. The title is really an encapsulation of it. So, let me give you the full question. To business owners and recruiters, when conducting an interview with potential employees, what weighs in more between an applicant that has skill set (meaning experiences) but lacks that wow factor (meaning impression) during an interview or vice versa).

For the person who sent me this question, you are ready know the answer period you make it seem as though. They are independent variables, but in the universe where firms have choices, the person who lacks what you call that wow factor (I'll just simply refer to this as personality) the person who lacks that, who, doesn't present that because they're afraid to show who they are, as well is what they know, is it at a distinct disadvantage because the next person coming in the door or the one after that, or the one after that, or the one after that will have that additional quality..

So, no matter what the field is, it's not just simply what you know, but it's how you present yourself that becomes important. After all, if you think of an interview as being a performance on stage, would you rather just sit listening to someone speak with a flat voice sounding bored, giving perfect answers or would you rather speak to someone who gives perfect answers and sounds alive, excited, human? I have to present it that way – – human, with the full scope of their personality and there presence, bearing and the ability to inspire confidence.

I've always said that one of the things that firm's use to decide between 2 good candidates is the candidate’s experience to inspire confidence that they are the solution to a need. What. It does is that it engages the interviewer’s heart, as well as their mind, and, thus, a person feels more secure in choosing that individual.

To summarize, they are not mutually exclusive. They go together and a choice between getting both or one is (after all, it’s rare that the incompetent person who has a great personality is hired for a job) but the one who has competence has a chance but the one has both is clearly going to be the winner.


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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