In a Behavioural Interview: It’s All About Me not ‘WE’

behavioural interview

Get ready for 2015 and new job opportunities with my three part blog series – Job Interviews: all the tips you need to be successful.

In Part Two of the series I look at behavioural interviewing and how you can maximise your success.

We’ve been conditioned so much to think of the team. Sayings like: “there is no ‘I’ in the word TEAM” help us to remember that working in an organisation isn’t just about you and what your own desires and wants are it’s about a collective group of people striving for the same thing; the same goal or vision.

Think of yourself

However, there is a time when it’s absolutely crucial to be selfish and to think of yourself; what YOUR achievements are, what YOUR experience is and what YOUR vision is. Not the company’s, not the team’s. And this is during your job interview.

It’s all about me not ‘WE’

So often when I coach people on how to answer behavioural interview questions they say: “we talked to stakeholders and got them to agree to our plan.” Or “we created a presentation that got the leadership team to sign off more funding for our department.” Or “we worked weekends and stayed back late to get the project over the line.” Can you see what is happening here? The word WE. It is is being used when you should be talking about what you’ve delivered and what you’ve achieved not what the collective or the team has done.

The interviewer doesn’t care what your team achieved over the last quarter unless you’re the team manager. When you use the term WE when answering behavioural interview questions you’re diluting your involvement. Sometimes it can make the interviewer completely question what your involvement was even if you played an integral part. Unless you’re answering a question about a difficulty you had with a colleague and how you resolved it/built the relationship WE shouldn’t be used when answering behavioural interview questions.

Your next steps

Stop thinking about your TEAM for a moment. Make a list of all your achievements. What role did you play? What was the outcome and how did that come about? Were there any obstacles or challenges that you faced to get to the outcome? How did you overcome them? Keep practising until the word WE is completely eliminated from your answers.

If this exercise sounds too tricky or you’re not sure what behavioural interviewing is and you’ve got an interview to prepare for I can help.¬† I offer personalised coaching to make you successful. Check out the options available for you with my Interview Advantage packages¬† here.

In Part Three I look at the mistakes you can make as an internal candidate.

Photo credit: deposit photos

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