With so many people looking for work, seeking answers to win the next opportunity, this question is all too common. At the same time, the suggested answers vary wildly but, for the most part seem to miss the crux of the issue. Why should I hire you?
Consider these common responses:
-) Accustomed to a fast pace and will hit the ground running
-) Will be a valuable asset to your organization
-) Able to handle stress and pressure
-) Think quickly on my feet
-) Am a team player
Great! Excellent! Not!
These are, all, generally assumed to be true statements. Can you imagine hiring someone who can’t handle stress? Someone who won’t be a valued asset? These are almost “necessary truths”. Otherwise they likely wouldn’t be talking with you. Let alone thinking of hiring you. Any ‘one’ of these might be optional, such as thinking quickly on your feet. Let’s face it, some jobs just don’t seem to require mental agility.
But, if you weren’t any one of these, why should they hire you?
The reality, boiled down and brutal, is that there are two reasons someone will hire you.
-) You contribute to $$ revenue growth (make more money);
-) You contribute to increased productivity (lower cost).
If you’re not either helping them make more money ($$) or improve productivity, they don’t need you.
Depending on the role, answers might be more like:
I’ve read the typical burger-flipper averages 3 burgers/minute. I’ve tried timing myself and can regularly do 5 burgers/minute…. That’s a 66% productivity improvement.
Based on my understanding of the role and mutual expectations, I believe there are ways to improve revenue at least 10% while keeping costs from growing more than 3%.
In a pinch, if you’re asked and don’t know the answer, as a mature professional, you should be able to reasonably say:
As a [My New Role], my key focus will be delivering productivity and revenue improvements.
These are the sort of answers that will catch their interest—especially if deemed credible. Everything else is just nice fluff in my opinion.
(photo credit: Konrad Mostert)