Let’s play a little word association.
Please, take a seat and make yourself comfortable. Perhaps imagine you’re lying back on a chaise in a safe place. Whatever works for you.
You ready? Okay let’s go.
Oof. Did you just shudder a bit, too? Stomach flip with butterflies? Did the words ‘dread’, ‘awkward’ and ‘panic’ come your mind?
If so, you’re not alone. In fact, the overwhelming majority of us (a whopping 93%) experience anxiety related to interviews.
But according to former Facebook Australia & New Zealand CEO Stephen Scheeler, who we sat down with during our 2021 Year13 Expo, we could be overthinking the whole ordeal.
Scheeler has interviewed hundreds of people for a wide variety of roles throughout his career, and he says we just need to focus on answering just two questions to get the hiring manager hooked.
And they’re probably not what you think.
- Tell me what I need to know
That’s how Scheeler opens every interview.
“I use that as a kind of qualifier – how good is this person at synthesising?” he said.
“Because we all have a lot of complex things going on in our minds and our jobs are complex but how do you synthesise that for someone who doesn’t know what you do?”
“Because I think that translation – how do I think about what you need to know and how do I translate it – is probably one of the most powerful skills anybody can have, regardless of the native skills in their domain.”
- Why you over everybody else?
Scheeler says what interviewers really want to know is what you can bring to the table, how those skills can translate into a positive impact on the business.
“And if you can answer those two questions really well, then I’m really interested,” Scheeler said.
Well, as Scheeler points out, as humans we’re not very effective at being able to identify talent or skills.
“But those are the two questions that can reveal – and quickly – how additive a person be to my organisation.”