How to Make a Hiring Manager Like You, with Dalena Bradley

Listen On:

Transcript

Find Your Dream Job, Episode 130:

How to Make a Hiring Manager Like You, with Dalena Bradley

Airdate: March 14, 2018

Mac Prichard:

Hi, this is Mac, of Mac’s List. Find Your Dream Job is presented by Mac’s List, an online community where you can find free resources for your job search, plus online courses and books that help you advance your career. My latest book is called Land Your Dream Job Anywhere. It’s a reference guide for your career that covers all aspects of the job search, including expert advice in every chapter. You can get the first chapter for free by visiting macslist.org/anywhere.

This is Find Your Dream Job, the podcast that helps you get hired, have the career you want, and make a difference in life. I’m Mac Prichard, your host and publisher of Mac’s List.

I’m joined by my co-hosts, Ben Forstag, Becky Thomas, and Jessica Black, from the Mac’s List team.

This week we’re talking about how to make a hiring manager like you.

We’ve all heard about the importance of chemistry in hiring. But how do you make a connection with a hiring manager you meet for the first time? This week’s guest expert is Dalena Bradley. She’s a career coach who helps job seekers get ready for interviews. She says you can make an employer like you in an interview. Later in the show, Dalena shows us how to do this.

The percentage of people quitting jobs has reached record levels, says a recent story on the Planet Money podcast. And that’s actually good news for workers and the economy.  In a moment, Ben explains why, in his final resource segment for our show.

You apply for a job. A short while later, you discover a typo in the resume you sent. What do you do next? That’s our question of the week. It come from listener Marjorie Alvarez of Portland, Oregon. Becky shares her advice shortly.

As always, let’s first check in with the Mac’s List team.

Every week, Ben, for a hundred and thirty episodes now, you’ve been out there searching the nooks and crannies of the Internet, looking for  websites, books, and tools you can use in our listener’s job searches and careers. What have you found for our listeners this week?

Ben Forstag:

Yes, I’ve been in every nook and cranny of the Internet, all on company time.

Jessica Black:

Oh, gosh.

Mac Prichard:

I like to think of you as wearing a miner’s helmet when you’re doing that.

Ben Forstag:

They call me the English Muffin Man down in the caves.

Mac Prichard:

Okay, I’m going to have to ponder that.

Ben Forstag:

This week I want to talk about a really cool, short podcast that I heard recently. It came from  National Public Radio’s Planet Money team. It’s called Why Quitting Is Awesome. It’s short, just about six minutes long, but it’s filled with some really interesting information about the current labor market in the United States.

You’ve probably heard about the unemployment report. This is the one that the news makes a big deal about every month, and the politicians either say is great or awful, depending on what side of the aisle they’re on. You know, this report is basically telling you how many jobs were gained or lost within a month. It’s a net measure of the total number of people who are working or not working.

The podcast, this Why Quitting Is Awesome show I listened to, talks about a different, relatively unknown monthly report that the government generates. It’s called the “Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey” — that’s JOLTS for short. This is a monthly measure of all the new job openings in America relative to the number of people who are unemployed. It’s a supply and demand way of looking at the labor market.

For example, if you look back at the recession about ten years ago, the JOLTS report showed that there were seven unemployed people for every one  job opening. That’s clearly bad times and a really tough market for job seekers.

Today we’re in a much better economy and that number is 1.1 unemployed people for every job opening. That’s pretty much one person for every job.

Jessica Black:

That’s great.

Ben Forstag:

It is. Now this doesn’t take into account where you specifically live or there could be a misalignment of skills, like there’s a lot of jobs for people in tech but you don’t have a tech background. Take this with a grain of salt. But the most interesting part of this JOLTS report is actually about the “Quit Rate”, which is the percentage of people who are voluntarily leaving their jobs in search of new opportunities. This is where the the name of the episode–Why Quitting is Awesome–comes from.

The idea behind this metric is that people generally quit when they feel really confident about their ability to find a replacement job. The percentage of people that are quitting is a bellwether for how people feel about the job market.

Again, good news here. The quit rate is about 2.2%, double what it was ten years ago. Which says that people are feeling much more confident with what the labor market looks like and leaving jobs that they don’t like or feel limited at.

The bottom line for job seekers is if you’re looking for work today, and right now it’s early 2018, (I’ll timestamp this) it’s a really good labor market. If you like data stuff like this, I really encourage you to check it out. Again, this comes from npr Planet Money team, and it’s called Why Quitting Is Awesome.

Mac Prichard:

Great, well thank you, Ben. As our longtime listeners know, you’ve been sharing this and other resources since our very first episode back in October of 2015. That was like a hundred and thirty episodes ago. I know this is your final show. You’re not leaving Mac’s List; you’ll continue as managing director, growing our educational services, and products, and our work with employers. It’s been such a pleasure to have you on the show.

Ben Forstag:

We’re still working next to each other, Mac.

But it’s been fun to be here and we will meet again. I don’t know where, I don’t know when. But I know we’ll meet again some sunny day.

Jessica Black:

Well, this will not be the last time Ben’s voice appears on the podcast. I can guarantee that. He’ll come in, he’ll miss it, he’ll fill in occasionally.

Becky Thomas:

He’ll grace the studio.

Ben Forstag:

Everytime I think I’m out they keep pulling me back in.

Becky Thomas:

That’s right.

Jessica Black:

Of course, we’re not going to let you go that easily. Also, it kind of ties into your resource of how quitting is awesome because this was voluntary.

Becky Thomas:

You did, you quit.

Mac Prichard:

You’re quitting.

Jessica Black:

You didn’t get fired.

Ben Forstag:

I’m feeling super confident about the podcast market right now. So I’m out.

Becky Thomas:

Everybody’s got a podcast.

Mac Prichard:

Well, terrific. I’m so grateful to you, Ben, because you have been doing this since the start and when I had this idea, you just got foursquare behind it. I think you deserve a huge amount of credit for the quality of the show, and obviously we’re a team here, the four of us, but you’ve been here from the start. Thank you for helping to make this show happen.

Ben Forstag:

Thank you, Mac.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah.

Jessica Black:

We will miss all your good dad jokes and funny punches at yourself. That will be lacking but we’ll make up for it.

Becky Thomas:

We’ll figure something out.

Mac Prichard:

We will. Change is coming, Becky, you’ll be taking over the resource segment of the show and I’m excited about that. How do you feel about that?

Becky Thomas:

I’ve got big shoes to fill.

Jessica Black:

That’s right.

Becky Thomas:

But luckily I have big feet. I’m just kidding.

Mac Prichard:

Good, and Jessica, you’re doubling up, you’ll be doing the soundboard and as co-host of course, but you’re also taking over the listener segment.

Jessica Black:

I will, yeah.

Becky Thomas:

I’m sort of sad to give it up. I liked the listener questions.

Jessica Black:

I know.

Becky Thomas:

But you’re great at that too.

Jessica Black:

Well, thanks. Again, it’s a tag team effort so you’ll be able to still contribute. Yeah, we’ll all have our spots.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah. Now one of the things Jessica and I get to do once a month is we get to do a group informational interview with Josh Seekers in Portland, Oregon. Those usually book up pretty fast, but if you’re ever interested in that, just write Jessica or me. I know by watching you in those meetings how much you enjoy answering their questions.

Jessica Black:

I do. Everyone has been through that job search quandary and the search itself. It’s tough when you don’t feel like you have the support, so I love being able to answer people’s questions and just make people feel at ease with whatever it is they’re going through.

Mac Prichard:

Good. Speaking of questions:

Let’s turn to you, Becky, for this week’s listener question. What do you have in the mailbag this week?

Becky Thomas:

Yeah, my last question as the official Listener Question Answerer comes from listener Marjorie Alvarez of Portland, Oregon. This is an interesting question; it addresses one of my favorite topics which is spelling and grammar. She asks,

“I applied for a job and then realized that there was a serious typo on my resume. Should I fix the typo and re-submit my application? Or should I just hope that the employer doesn’t notice?”

This is a tricky one and I can just imagine that feeling of looking back over it after you’ve sent your resume and being like, “Oh my gosh, that is spelled completely wrong.” It’s the worst feeling, so I can sympathize with Marjorie on this one. I want to hear what you guys think, but I would tell her, hopefully you caught it quick and fixed the resume, and just replied to your initial email and say, “Hey, I just noticed there was a small error on my resume, so here’s the corrected version. Thanks.” Don’t make a big deal out of it.

I really think that hoping the employer doesn’t notice is not the right move. Even in submitting your application, you’re showing this potential employer what kind of employee you would be. If you are just going to make a mistake and not tell anybody, that’s not a good move. You have to own up to the mistake once you’ve identified it, fix it, and then let the employer know, “Hey, here’s what happened and here’s how I fixed it.”

I think the same goes for resumes, even though it feels like you’re calling attention to your own error, you did make a mistake. As an employer, if it was me, I would probably still ding you a little bit for the initial typo because you do need to catch that stuff on the first round, but you also realize that everyone makes mistakes and you appreciate and respect the person for fixing the error.

Jessica Black:

And being honest about it and sharing it. Again like you said, hopefully it happened quickly and you can… I agree with everything you just said, of catch it quickly if you can, send a reply to that same email or whatever it was, I just assume that it was an email.

Becky Thomas:

That was my other thought, if they did submit it through an ATS or something where it’s harder to take it back. I don’t know if I would submit a whole new application in that situation.

Jessica Black:

That’s an interesting conundrum for that one. I’m thinking about what would happen if it was through an ATS or something like that. In my mind and vision, it was always replying to that email. Then that’s easier because you can follow that track of, “Oops, I fixed this.” Don’t say oops, but you know, “I noticed there was an error and I wanted to send a corrected version.”

I don’t know. Mac, Ben, what do you guys think about the ATS? What would you do in that situation?

Ben Forstag:

Well, I know some ATS systems actually let you login and edit your application and you can upload a new resume and do the whole document management thing. That’s all predicated on the idea that you make those edits before they start the review process.  For the more generic example of emailing the hiring manager, again, I think that most people acknowledge that people make mistakes. I think that given the option of acknowledging or ignoring the mistake, I think that most people would prefer that you acknowledge the mistake.

Jessica Black:

Absolutely.

Ben Forstag:

I would still say you’re probably going to get dinged on this one way or another.

Becky Thomas:

Yeah, it’s impossible to get out of that situation scot-free.

Jessica Black:

It is, but I think that speaks so highly to your character of not just letting it slide by and hoping the manager doesn’t notice because most of the time the manager will notice. Yeah, I think taking that initiative and speaking up about it shows much more value than just trying to pretend. It’s that whole attention to detail thing, and yes, you should have caught it beforehand but at least you caught it later. Speaking up about it will show… I don’t know. I agree with what you said, Becky.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, I think you want to avoid the error but if you do make the mistake, admit it. You would rather not have made the error but I think acknowledging it and calling it and fixing it is going to reflect well on you.

Jessica Black:

Yeah, I think so too.

Ben Forstag:

I also want to throw out there is that it’s a mistake that probably everyone has made.

Jessica Black:

Absolutely.

Ben Forstag:

It’s one of the errors of submitting lots of applications online. I am absolutely positive that at some point in one job search or another, I’ve sent an employer a cover letter with the wrong employer’s name on it or something like that.

Jessica Black:

I was just going to say that has always been my stress, and thankfully I don’t think it has ever happened, but I always double check after I send it. That I sent it to the right name and that everything went through because that is always my stress.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, I expect the three of you, certainly for me, when you read the question, Becky, through my head went a number of occasions where I’ve misspelled someone’s name or I’ve gotten basic facts wrong in an application letter, or a grant application, or some important business document. We’ve all been there.

Becky Thomas:

Yeah.

Jessica Black:

Yeah, we have.

Mac Prichard:

Okay, well great advice. Well thank you for the question, and starting next week you’re going to turn the mailbag over to Jessica.

Becky Thomas:

Yeah, I have the mailbag in my hand. I’m handing it to Jessica. Here you go.

Jessica Black:

Perfect. I got it.

Mac Prichard:

The Mac’s List logo is on it.

Becky Thomas:

It’s full of letters.

Mac Prichard:

It’s a trophy. So send your questions to Jessica; her email is jessica@macslist.org. You can also call the listener line; that’s area-code 716-JOB-TALK, or post your question on the Mac’s List Facebook group.

If we use your question on the show, we’ll send you a copy of our book Land Your Dream Job Anywhere.

Then, if you have ideas for resources, don’t forget, Becky’s taking over that job so please email her.

Jessica Black:

Send us everything.

Mac Prichard:

Yes. That’s becky@macslist.org.

We’ll be back in a moment. When we return, I’ll talk with this week’s guest expert, Dalena Bradley, about how to make a hiring manager like you.

Ageism in hiring is against the law. It’s also a fact of life in today’s job market.

If you’re 59-years-old like me, you face an uphill climb when you look for work.

I want to help you overcome those odds. So I’ve put my best job interview advice for older workers into one new guide.
 
It’s called How to Fight Ageism in a Job Interview.  And it gives you the skills you need to beat the barriers older workers face.

You’ll learn: Why you should embrace your age, rather than run from it. How to talk about the taboo topic of age. What you can do to diffuse age as a factor in hiring.

Get your free copy of How to Fight Ageism in a Job Interview today. Visit macslist.org/fightageism.

Now, let’s get back to the show!

Now let’s turn to this week’s guest expert, Dalena Bradley.

Dalena Bradley is a professional resume writer, interview coach, and career marketing specialist.

Before launching her own practice, Dalena was an executive recruiter with Woodworth International Group and an outplacement consultant with Lee Hecht Harrison. And she also worked in corporate communications for Hyatt Hotels and the Nestlé Beverage Company.

She joins us today in the Mac’s List studio here in Portland. It’s been a while since we’ve had a guest in the studio, so Dalena, thanks for coming downtown.

Dalena Bradley:

Well thank you for having me, Mac. I really appreciate it.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, it’s a pleasure. Now Dalena, this week we’re talking about how to make hiring managers like you, and I have to say when you and I talked about this topic, I got excited because I think people do want to be liked when they’re walking into an interview but they’re probably very stressed out at that point, aren’t they?

Dalena Bradley:

That’s absolutely true.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, so why is it important to make that connection? To be likable to a hiring manager when you walk into that interview room?

Dalena Bradley:

Well, by the time you’ve gotten to the interview, it’s very likely you’ve been vetted. You have the skills to do the job, at least judging from your resume and maybe an initial phone call. By the time you make it to that in person interview stage, they want to talk to you, they want to find out if they can work with you. What that means is, if they like you.

That is an extremely important component of the hiring process, as much as having the skill set.

Mac Prichard:

You’ve got the technical skills, the hard skills, when you walk in that room, you don’t have to prove that anymore, but I imagine some people might think, “This sounds like high school. I have to be popular, or I have to be liked.” But what you’re really talking about are a different set of skills. They’re soft skills, aren’t they?

Dalena Bradley:

Absolutely, yes.

Mac Prichard:

Can you give us examples of what those skills are and the kinds of things people should be paying attention to?

Dalena Bradley:

You bet. A couple of confidence builders, one of the things I wanted to talk about before getting into some of those soft skills is, before you walk into the building, make sure that you do an appearance check. Making sure that you look good, that you don’t have any kale from lunch in your teeth, that your buttons are buttoned properly, that will help you build confidence before you ever even walk into the building.

From there, you’re on stage; think of anyone that you meet, as you approach, on the elevator ride up, in the lobby, as a potential co-worker. It’s important to have a friendly demeanor, and to be friendly to people. When you meet the receptionist, saying hello, being friendly to anyone who may walk by. Just having that relaxed demeanor, someone that you would want to work with, or have them work with you. That’s really important before you ever get started.

Paying attention to your appearance and also just observing your surroundings a little bit as conversation starters potentially. That also gives you a little idea of maybe the culture of the company. You’re gathering data as you’re waiting in the lobby.

Mac Prichard:

You’re not looking at your phone, you’re not looking at magazines, you’re paying attention to your surroundings.

Dalena Bradley:

That’s right. Also just gathering those data points, as conversation starters. Having your phone turned off completely and out of sight is really important, like you said, because you want to be one hundred percent present before you ever walk in.

Mac Prichard:

Phones are distractions. It’s good to turn it off completely.

Dalena Bradley:

Yes.

Mac Prichard:

Okay.

Dalena Bradley:

I also suggest people stand as they wait for the interviewer to walk in.

Mac Prichard:

What’s the advantage of that, Dalena?

Dalena Bradley:

That’s another confidence builder I believe. Because when the person comes in and you meet with them, and you meet them first, and you are looking at them eye to eye, you’re on equal ground. You are an equal participant in this. Interviewers think, “Wow I’m going in for the interview, the employer has all the power and I am the interviewee.” It’s sometimes a position of, they don’t feel like they have as much power. But standing up, and when the person comes in you’re on equal ground, can be really helpful.

Mac Prichard:

I think also, as you talk, it occurs to me that it might help just a little bit with the nervous energy too, because you can walk a little bit, you can shift your weight. It probably helps put you at ease, doesn’t it?

Dalena Bradley:

Yes.

Mac Prichard:

Okay, so you’ve checked your appearance, and I’m glad you brought that up because we’ve all been in meetings where somebody’s wardrobe was a little bit off and it’s kind of embarrassing, and you don’t know whether to say anything or not. Maybe there is that kale on the teeth.

You’ve walked in, you’ve payed attention to your surroundings, the manager’s come in, you’re standing. What happens next?

Dalena Bradley:

What happens next is there’s an introduction and you are going to give a firm, dry handshake, make eye contact and smile. Those are very basic things to do when you first meet someone in any situation but particularly these first few seconds. These first seconds are mission critical to building that first impression. You’re giving that firm, dry handshake; you’re looking them in the eye; you’re smiling; you’re saying, “It’s very nice to meet you.” I’m sure they will have said, “Hi, my name is Sam Jones.” “Nice to meet you, Sam.” People like to hear their name, it’s good to repeat their name.

Mac Prichard:

It’s the sweetest sound isn’t it? Do you know that expression?

Dalena Bradley:

Yes.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, I think, is it Dale Carnegie who said that, the sweetest sound is someone’s name?

Dalena Bradley:

Yes.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah.

Good, so you’ve got that handshake. Why is a good, firm, dry handshake so important in establishing likability?

Dalena Bradley:

Well, because if you offer a weak, limp hand, that can give the person an impression that you might not be confident in yourself. If you’re not confident in yourself, you may be less likely to do the job. That direct connection right off the bat is really important.

Mac Prichard:

So you’ve introduced yourself, you’re standing there, what happens next? Do you make small talk, Dalena, or go straight to the interview room? What’s going to help the candidate?

Dalena Bradley:

Use these seconds as you are walking into the office, presumably, you have thirty to sixty seconds. Sometimes the interviewer will kick it off, they will break the ice a little bit and you can follow their lead. But if that’s not the case then use that time, make a little bit of conversation. You will have checked the surroundings in the lobby, maybe you saw a fascinating piece of pottery, or some interesting artwork on the wall, maybe there’s some construction going on outside the building, maybe you have some people in common as part of the research you should have done before your interview. You researched the interviewer and perhaps you have some colleagues in common, or work history in common, friends in common; that’s a time to bring something like that up, and there’s always the weather.

Mac Prichard:

It’s a classic, and I can remember as a young adult thinking, “It’s so trivial to talk about the weather, but with maturity, I’ve learned that people feel awkward with silence, don’t they? People want that silence to be filled. It both puts them at ease and to your point, also increases their likability, doesn’t it?

Dalena Bradley:

I think it does. It shows that you are interested in building a relationship with your interviewer and that you’re engaged. You’re ready to go. You’re being friendly, it’s just friendliness.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, which can be hard to do when you’re in what is, candidly, a high stress situation, isn’t it?

Dalena Bradley:

Yes.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah.

I know you’re a big fan of reading people. Can you tell us more about that? Because here you’ve met this person, you’re walking down the hall, you get ready to walk into a room, maybe with just that interviewer, but perhaps a panel. How can reading people help?

Dalena Bradley:

Right. Again, these seconds are really great for data gathering; presumably you’re following some distance behind the person, maybe you’re side by side, but pay attention to the way they move. Do they move quickly? Do they move more slowly? Do they seemed like a more reserved personality? Do they seem like more of an extrovert? These are all data points you can gather to use to build rapport. Because if you feel this person is more reserved, perhaps you adapt your style somewhat if you’re an extreme extrovert, off of the charts, and you’re a really enthusiastic personality.  You don’t want to completely overwhelm, or overpower, a more reserved person and the opposite is true as well.

Mac Prichard:

This is going to help you not only be effective in the interview but it’s going to help with your likeability as well.

Dalena Bradley:

Yes, adapting your style shows that you’re paying attention to the person and that detail.

Mac Prichard:

Okay. What happens next? What about when you’re sitting down, let’s talk about rapport because in the end, rapport is about making a connection. What is your best advice, Dalena, about establishing rapport to increase your likability?

Dalena Bradley:

Again, making that small talk on the way to the interview and having questions to ask is important. Another thing is body language. So, I was talking about when you’re following the person, watching how they move and that sort of thing. Once you’re seated, that’s another time to read your interviewer’s body language and to use good body language yourself. It’s building rapport nonverbally.

For example, what I suggest to job seekers is to sit upright or slightly forward in their seat. Not to sit too far back because if you sit too far back, it shows that you’re not that interested. Also crossing your leg in a figure four position where you’re ankle is over your knee, that is a really casual way to sit in a first interview type of situation. Sitting upright and leaning forward, watch your interviewer because if they lean forward, it’s good to mirror them. It shows that you are paying attention to them and you are interested in continuing to relationship build. It’s “I’m paying attention to you so I’m going to mirror you just a little bit.” If they sit back a little bit, maybe you do; if they lean one direction or another slightly, you do too. Keep it subtle, don’t want to go overboard. If someone itches their head or fiddles with their clothes, please don’t mirror that. But that’s another way to build rapport.

Also maintaining good eye contact throughout the interview. Smiling throughout the interview. It’s very easy to forget to smile when you are in this situation where you want to do well and answer the questions correctly so you can get the job, but remember to smile occasionally.

Mac Prichard:

What are the benefits of smiling, Dalena? How does that help a candidate?

Dalena Bradley:

I think it shows that you have a friendly, approachable personality, that you are enjoying the conversation because that is a very important aspect where you are acting like you’re interested and enjoying being in there. Being in the position to have this opportunity for this job.

Mac Prichard:

I know with some candidates, who just struggle with the nerves that come with interviewing, it can be hard to smile and do the things that you’re recommending, which all sound spot on to me. Be approachable, and friendly, and interested. It’s good that you’re laying all this out.

I know also that people want to show excitement and enthusiasm. Can you be too excited?

Dalena Bradley:

Sure.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah.

Dalena Bradley:

You don’t want to be fake, you want to be genuine. I think you probably can be too excited, especially if you say how excited you are over and over and over. I believe that interviewers want to see authenticity, and by all means, give positive language. Be sure to say, “Wow, this sounds like a really interesting position and I want to know more.” That sort of thing. But using too much gesturing can be distracting and saying that how excited you are rather than the content of what you’re saying is probably overkill.

Mac Prichard:

Okay.

Dalena Bradley:

I wanted to also talk about putting up nonverbal barriers when you’re talking.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, give us some examples of that.

Dalena Bradley:

Right, so we all know that crossing our arms when we’re talking with someone can put up a physical barrier. If you’re sitting there in the interview and you’ve got your arms crossed, or maybe you’ve brought a portfolio in and you’ve got that portfolio up against your chest, be sure to have your arms uncrossed and not have anything in front of you because covering up your torso like that…subconsciously, it builds mistrust. You need to be open with your body language and not hide parts of yourself. That’s something to think about as well.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, we’ve done a number of interviews now about job interviews with other experts and really we’ve talked about the research you need to do before you walk in the room to understand the employer and the preparation you need to do to both highlight your own skills and draw employers out about their problems. What I love about this conversation is I think that a point you’re making is that it’s also like doing a presentation. You’ve got to pay attention to how you present yourself and how you engage your audience, whether it’s one person or a panel. You’re not on a stage but in a sense you are.

Dalena Bradley:

That’s right.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, well it’s been a great conversation. Now tell us, what’s coming up next for you, Dalena?

Dalena Bradley:

Well, I am continuing in my practice of coaching executives and professionals, one-on-one, on how to get prepared and feel confident going into their interviews. I’ll continue sharing resources on my website and through presentations locally.

Mac Prichard:

Great. I know you’ve put together a special gift for our listeners; it’s a collection of interview success tips that you’ve used with your clients. People can download those by visiting dalenabradley.com/findyourdreamjob.

Thanks for coming to the studio today, Dalena.

Dalena Bradley:

Thank you so much for having me.

Mac Prichard:

It’s been a pleasure.

We’re back in the Mac’s List studio. Now tell me, what are your thoughts about my conversation with Dalena? Ben? Final show, Ben Forstag.

Ben Forstag:

Yeah, you learn something new even after a hundred and thirty episodes. Her suggestion about standing up while you’re waiting for the interview, I’m not sure that would actually calm me down, usually sitting down helps me feel more grounded, gives me some space to breathe and calm down, but I can also see her point about when the employer opens the door or walks around the corner to meet you, you’re already standing and at attention. It sets a good first visual, I think.

Jessica Black:

Yeah, that’s good.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, I think a lot of her tips about…She was talking about ability but to me, they were about removing barriers between you and this other person. A lot of folks walk into job interviews and they’re nervous understandably, but they also feel like they’re supplicants, they feel like they’re waiting to be picked or they’re waiting for somebody to give something to them. They’re problem solvers. They’re not the peer of the manager, but they’ve got a lot to offer.

Ben Forstag:

Or sometimes people act like it’s a confrontation. You’re walking into a gauntlet or something. I can understand where that feeling comes from but really that’s generally not what most hiring managers are trying to do in an interview.

Jessica Black:

Yeah, I agree. I’m going to jump on that train and adjust it a little bit. The metaphor lost itself a little bit, but in terms of, I think people are coming in…and you’re nervous and you’re going over your points in your head of like, “I have to remember to say this, and this, and this.” You are so focused on what you are going to say and I liked her tips on reading what’s around you to be able to be present and to be able to use that as both conversation starters and to be able to understand the person in front of you so that you can build that rapport with somebody. Then also set yourself at ease. I thought that was really interesting.

Becky Thomas:

Yeah, I would just go back to the point that she made at the very beginning which is that if you got the interview, they probably already think that you have the skills.

Jessica Black:

Absolutely.

Becky Thomas:

You just need to figure out if you are going to enjoy working together. You do need to show some of your personality and not be too worried. Of course, you have to prepare answers to the questions and all of these things but once you get there you should be prepared enough that you can relax a little bit and show your personality, and show them your culture fit and how you might fit in with the office culture and things like that. I think her tips were great and it’s important.

Jessica Black:

I agree, she shared so many good tips and yeah, it was just really enjoyable.

Mac Prichard:

Yeah, they were terrific tips. I know, again, that people can get that tip sheet from her by visiting that url that we mentioned.

Jessica Black:

Yeah I know she had a lot more that she wanted to share that we didn’t have time to get to.

Mac Prichard:

She did mention that after the interview. Check that out when you have a moment.

Thank you, Dalena, for joining us in the studio and thank you all. Thank you, our listeners for joining us this week. Ben, farewell, we’ll be bringing you back as a guest star soon, I’m sure.

Ben Forstag:

They already unplugged my mic.

Jessica Black:

Not true.

Mac Prichard:

Okay, well today we’ve been talking about job interviews and it’s a timely topic because interviews are a really important part of hiring, particularly when you’re an older candidate.

Getting that hiring manager to like you is all about overcoming barriers and making connections.

One of the biggest barriers older workers face is ageism. Don’t let it stop you from getting your dream job. Go to macslist.org/fightageism to download How to Fight Ageism in a Job Interview.

Do it today and learn how to overcome negative stereotypes employers have about older workers. Discover what you can do to stand out as a candidate, as well as ensure that employers focus on your skills, not your age.

Get your free copy of How to Fight Ageism in a Job Interview today. Visit macslist.org/fightageism.

Join us next Wednesday when our special guest will be Thea Kelley. She’ll tell us about the interview mistakes she sees smart people make.

Until next time, thanks for letting us help you find your dream job!

Culture fit and team chemistry are important factors in hiring today. If you’ve got a job interview, the hiring manager probably knows you’re qualified for the job. What they want to find out is whether you’ll fit in and work well with their team. While you need to prepare to answer tough questions in a job interview, you also need to be friendly and win over the hiring manager. In short, you’ve got to get them to like you. In this episode, our guest shares lots of tips to do just that.

About Our Guest: Dalena Bradley

Dalena BradleyDalena Bradley is a professional resume writer, interview coach, and career marketing specialist. Before launching her own practice, Dalena worked in corporate communications, was an executive recruiter with Woodworth International Group and served as an outplacement consultant with Lee Hecht Harrison.

Resources in this Episode

  • New Tool: The Planet Money team explains a lesser-known jobs statistic that highlights worker confidence. Listen to the audio clip: Why Quitting is Awesome
  • Listener Question: Marjorie Alvarez asks what to do when – Oh, no! – you notice a typo in your resume after you submitted it to an employer!
  • More from Dalena Bradley: Dalena shared her 20 Interview Success Tips with our listeners.