In the last post, we discussed the reasons that you may not want to hide the parts of your history that may not reflect that highly on your candidacy. Here, we’ll look at one possible solution for reducing the effects of your “flaws.”
Bring the Flaw Up in the Beginning
Flaws are irrelevant if their impact is minimized. One possible solution for minimizing your weaknesses is to bring it up in the beginning of the interview, before the interview gets underway.
The interviewer has somewhere between 1 and 4 hours scheduled for your job interview. They expect to take all 1-4 hours to decide if you are right for the job. They are going to try their best to learn as much as they can about you during that period of time.
So if they hear you have a weakness up front, and you follow that weakness up with 4 hours of excellent interviewing, then the effect of that flaw is drastically minimized. The long interview makes the flaw seem much less relevant.
Consider the opposite. You have a long, great interview. The interviewer thinks they have the right person for the job. They think you are perfect. Then suddenly, at the end of the interview, they find out that you do not know how to do a very important part of the job. Boom. Their happiness falls. Suddenly you are not perfect, and they notice the huge drop in potential. Then the interview ends, and the last part of the interview leaves a foul taste in their mouth about the candidacy.
The first situation is much better than the second. In the first situation, you tell the person up front that something is wrong. They know that it’s wrong, it’s out in the open, and you spend the rest of the interview proving that you are still an excellent applicant. On the opposite side, you seemed like a great candidate, but then BOOM, a serious flaw.
Bringing it Up
If you are fairly certain your weakness is going to be discovered, bring it up in the beginning. Let’s say you lied on your resume, and you know you are going to be caught. Then rather than wait until they figured it out, say the following:
“Before we begin, I just wanted to let you know that there was an error on my resume. I never worked with NetSuite Small Business or Cougar Mountain software like I had originally listed on my resume. Those were lines I had kept in a first draft of an ideal resume I was crafting and sent over the wrong copy to your organization. I apologize for my error, but I will teach myself the software before I start if I am selected for the role.”
Then the rest of the interview you can do your best to prove that you are still a great candidate, and minimize the effect of the weakness on your candidacy.
When you know the weakness will come up in the job interview, and you know it will affect your interview chances, consider bringing it up in the beginning. The earlier you bring it up, the longer time you have to help the interviewer forget it.
Take Away Interview Tips
- Minimize your flaws.