Good news! Getting a lucrative job isn’t a stroke of luck, as you might have told yourself.
Psychologists have discovered that hiring is done on the basis of traits that are completely under your control. Yes, you can develop these traits with conscious effort, just as you build any other skill.
“So what are these factors? And if this was so simple, why didn’t I know it earlier?”
Don’t worry. Perhaps you already knew it in the back of your mind, but weren’t focused on it. So pat yourself on the back because you’ve made it here and now you can change your career for the better.
Here are the two factors that make or break your chances of getting a job.
Competence is the ability to do your work successfully.
In the context of job search, you need to ask yourself some important questions related to competence:
Want to know the truth?
For most people, the answer to all these questions is “no.” We try to find a great job without working on ourselves first. And the few people who do, actually get the job and get that “stroke of luck” that others talk about when they get the results.
Therefore it is important to improve your craft. Nobody wants to work with average people. Average is the enemy of progress.
Of course, it’s equally important to learn how to answer tough interview questions or how to make an impressive resume because not only do you need to be competent, you must also be able to SHOW that you’re competent. Be your own marketer, if you will.
The bottom line is, “Don’t chase what you want. Elevate your game until what you want chases you.”
Warmth refers to being friendly and likeable.
Think for a second, would you want to work with someone you don’t like personally? You may crack all the secret codes to hack job interviews, but in the end, it all boils down to human connection. Only if the other person likes you will they ever work with you.
You might be wondering, “I can improve my work skills, but how do I become warm and friendly?” You don’t have to exude the charisma of George Clooney to become a warm person. Just be humble and be you, and remember that a smile goes a long way.
To make things interesting, let’s consider one of the most feared interview questions – “Why should we hire you?” and answer it based on the two critical traits:
“I know that I can do it and I believe that is enough. I have achieved a lot in my past jobs and worked better than most of my teammates.”
Interviewer: You can’t do it, why are you so cocky about it? I hate your attitude.
“I want to be honest here. I don’t have a great achievement record, but I’m willing to give all of my energy to this job. I can work long hours and take care of more responsibilities. If I face any problem, I’ll consult other employees or contact you.”
Interviewer: I like you, but you can’t do it. Better luck next time.
“I have achieved a lot in sales and supervising. And I had to regularly mentor employees in my past job. I have done more than many of the employees combined in my company. In fact, they were pretty slow with the learning process but I took care of it. That’s how I stand apart.”
Interviewer: You can do it, but I have no time for arrogant people.
“First, I really like your company’s culture as it focuses on innovation. I have always wanted to work in a creative atmosphere where I can try out new ideas and bring them to life.
Second, I believe my expertise is perfectly suited for your needs. I have a lot of experience with product design at XYZ company. In the last quarter, I used ABC strategy and with my design, the company achieved a 33% boost in sales. Although aggressive goals can make me nervous sometimes, I always come up with new ideas and learn from others to produce an extraordinary product.”
Interviewer: I wish I had met you earlier.
So, what are we getting at?
When you’re both warm and competent, you prove that you can achieve results by mentioning your past achievements. And you aren’t afraid to say that “I get nervous” or “I learn from others”. You don’t hide your faults.
In the end, it all boils down to this: You need to show that “you can”, but you also need to know “how” to say it.
Akshay Gupta loves to write on personal growth. He's on a mission to empower people with his words and make them realize their full potential. To read more of his articles, visit Fearless Motivation.