Job searchers are asking the question, “What are interviewers really looking for in job candidates?” If you have not interviewed in years, you may be surprised that the rules and criteria of successful interviewing have changed. This should not come as a surprise. Just as the where, when, and how of our work has changed, so have what employers look for in potential candidates.
The work environment has been redesigned from private offices to cubicles and open floor plans. Many people are working remotely and share a connection desk, when they decide to come into the office. Pad and pencil have been replaced with a laptop and virtual connection. The typical hiring methodology which started with a candidate applying and submitting a resume, followed by the employer interviewing the candidate for skills, likeability, and references, are indicative of the past.
Today, companies are not just looking for someone with the skills to do the job but for someone who is motivated and creative. Employers want to hire people who will take ownership, do what is necessary, and get their hands dirty. They are looking for employees who believe in what the company is trying to build. Interviewers are looking for candidates who have passion, values, and goals, and that these values align with the company. Companies also want to know the strengths of the individual and that these align with the position.
First and foremost, I encourage my clients to identify their core values, because these values should drive their work and life purpose. Conflict and stress build, when people do not live out their core values in daily activities and decision-making. Since many people have not identified their top core values, employers are doing job candidates a favor, when they focus their interviewing objectives on understanding and matching values.
What would be examples of core values? Two of my highest ranked core values are authenticity and leadership. If I am not able to work under these two values, I cannot drive and leverage my strengths to the best of my ability and for the benefit of my team and employer. I thrive in low-hierarchy, empowerment, and accountability cultures and die in command and control cultures which stifle my creativity and innovation. I also need the opportunity to express myself and share my opinions regardless of whether they are adopted and expect the same from my team. I am comfortable joining the consensus, even if my opinion differs, as long as I have been genuinely heard.
What are your values? If you have not taken a values assessment, I encourage you to partner with a coach, who can help you identify the values that most resonate with you.
About the Author: Sandra Dillon is a professional coach, consultant, and mentor with an extensive background in business development, leadership, and ministry which provides her with the experience, relational skills, and proven processes to move individuals, couples, and leaders to higher levels of personal awareness, effectiveness, and goal achievement. She coaches in a variety of areas including leadership, life purpose/plans, business, finances, and premarital/marriage. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 281.793.3741.