What do business owners and hiring managers really want to hear in a job interview?

by Stan Van Nice on March 9th, 2010

Sure, the company wants the position filled. But the wrong hire can cost a company anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000. So here is my take from someone who conducts interviews and makes hiring decisions weekly.

Top 5 things business owners and hiring managers want to hear in a job interview:

1. We want to hear how you can add value to the company, that you have the skills and the moxy to get the job done. We want to know how are you going to save the company money or add revenue. Be ready to talk to specific examples.

2. We want  hear that you are interviewing us as well as us interviewing you. Ask good questions about the position, skills needed, difficulties, company culture, management style, company direction are great starts. Failure to do this tells us that you want just any job at any company.

3. We want to hear that you know how to get along with others. That you know how to write, speak, dress and act in a way that is appropriate for the organization. Social graces go along way, enough said...

4. We want to hear that your are intrinsically motivated by the company mission and the work that you will be doing. That you will be bring passion and be engaged in what you do. Not only that you will do the job but make the job better.  If you don't love what you do for a living then it will be difficult to be the best and bring out the best in others.

5. We want to hear that you want the job, so ask for the job. I am surprised how many people ask about the next step but stop there. Keep going until we say no and then ask again. We will let you know if you are being too persistent.

Find the right position at the right company and crush it!

Reply from: on March 10th, 2010 at 09:42 am
I find that showing flexibility ("No, I don't know how to do that, but I'd love to learn" or "I understand that I have to do things in my job that may not be spelled out in my job description") is a great way to keep an interviewer's interest.

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