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Interview Mindset – “The Customer Visit”

One of the many tips I give to executive level candidates going on job interviews is to have a customer visit mindset. When people think to themselves “I’m going on an INTERVIEW,” they become more humble, modest, respectful, etc. They speak when spoken to, and accept the one-down hierarchical aspect of the interview setting. This is highly counterproductive.

On the other hand, executives who visit customers are proactive, engaging, and on an equal footing with the customer. They ask lots of questions, and understand the value of an “incremental close” – getting small agreements that the product or service they offer is being “bought.” This approach works wonders in an interview.

Position yourself to be an equal to the interviewer, not one step down. Engage in an active discussion, but remember to let the interviewer set the pace of the discussion. Proactively show the employer how you can do the job (how the product meets their needs) by making sure you discover the objectives for the position, then offer illustrations of how your experience fulfills those objectives.

You are the “VP of Sales & Marketing” for the “YOU” company, and “YOU” are also the product. Find out what benefits the customer needs from the product, and then make sure they are convinced that your “product features” will meet their needs. At the end, “ask for the order”, by determining if the employer feels you are a fit for the job.