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Landing an interview for a job you really want can be one of the most exciting moments of your career. But now you’ve got to start preparing for it, including researching the company and common interview questions that are likely to come up.
And while rehearsing your answers for these is essential, it’s also a good idea to try to work in some powerful statements that will not only impress the hiring manager but also land you the job.
Here are 10 statements that you should consider using in your next interview!
1. ‘I’m excited about this opportunity because…’
Enthusiasm is one of the key characteristics that employers look for in potential candidates. Indeed, no company wants an employee that needs to be constantly motivated to do their job. So, expressing excitement about a position to an employer definitely makes a good impression.
However, when using this statement, your enthusiasm must be genuine – a good interviewer will be able to tell whether you’re truly excited about the opportunity or only saying it to impress them.
Be sure you have some concrete rationale as to why you’re excited about the opportunity. This may require a little soul-searching prior to the interview. Ask yourself what excites you, or what you’re passionate about, and then try to match that with the job you’re interviewing for.
For example, you may be passionate to learn about the latest computer technology. You could then tell the interviewer that you’re excited about the opportunity of working in a technical support capacity because the job will require you to keep current on the latest technology.
2. ‘I really enjoy [product or service offered by company].’
One of the first things you should do when preparing for an interview is to do some research into the company you’re applying for a job with. This is because the hiring manager will invariably ask you what you know about the company and its products and services, and you don’t want to be caught without an answer.
Therefore, as you’re researching the company, be sure to make note of, or even to sample, specific products or services that you can then point to during the interview. This will allow you to use this statement truthfully, as you’ll have gained first-hand knowledge of their product. For example, you might say ‘I really enjoy your new line of premium red wines, especially the Pinot Noir, and I would be excited to help you market them’.
3. ‘I admire the way you...’
Everyone, including hiring managers, likes to be admired, respected and complimented for their work. ‘Positive feedback provided through a sincere admiration statement warms up the interview and creates a feeling of goodwill,’ says Damian Birkel, Founder and Executive Director of Professionals in Transition.
However, Birkel adds the following warning: ‘It must be sincere, not contrived. If you try to make an insincere comment, the interviewer’s intuition will kick in and your attempt to curry favour will fall flat with a load thud.’
In order to utilise this statement in an appropriate fashion, try to determine something about the person conducting your interview that you can comment on with sincerity. If you can’t come up with something you admire about the person, try to indicate something you admire about the organisation itself.
4. ‘I solved a similar problem.’
The ability to analyse and solve problems is another one of the skills that employers are always looking for. However, if you’re going to make this statement in an interview, you must have an example or two in order to back it up.
Therefore, it’s a good idea, prior to your interview, to think about your past experience with solving problems. In order to accomplish this, try reviewing past performance evaluations or letters of commendation/appreciation which you may have received. You can also ask a coworker if they can provide an example of your problem-solving skills, but just be sure to speak with someone you know to be discreet – you don’t want your current employer to know you’re looking for another job!
5. ‘I would like to work here because...’
As previously mentioned, employers really appreciate candidates who demonstrate enthusiasm. And this statement, properly used during an interview, clearly gets that message across.
However, if you’re going to make this statement, you have to have a believable rationale as to why you want to work at that company. The fact that it is a well-known company, or that the job pays really well, is just not sufficient.
Once again, here’s where that all-important pre-interview research proves extremely beneficial. If you discover, for example, that the company has a policy of rewarding the performance of its employees by promoting offering rapid career advancement opportunities, that would be a legitimate rationale for wanting to work there.
6. ‘I’m a match for this job because…’
This is one of the most important and influential statements that you can make during a job interview. Birkel says: ‘This is a unique opportunity to match your abilities with the employer’s needs. It reinforces your strengths as a candidate and enthusiastic willingness to do the job.’
You can be sure that just as you’re trying to demonstrate to an employer that you’re a perfect match during an interview, they’re trying to determine if your skills and personality really do match the job. Therefore, the most effective way to utilise this statement is to have advanced knowledge of what the job requires and to be prepared to give concrete examples of how your experience and skills match those requirements.
7. ‘This job aligns with my long-term goals, and I would like to continue building my career with this company.’
As previously indicated, interviewers will inevitably ask you a question such as ‘Where do see yourself five years from now?’ because they want to know about your long-term goals. And why is this so important to employers? Well, organisations want employees who have a vision of what they want for their future and a strategy to achieve that vision. This indicates to an employer that you’re someone who will grow with the company over a long period of time.
Once again, however, using this statement effectively requires that you already have some advanced knowledge of the company so that you can demonstrate how your goals and those of the company are aligned.
8. ‘Working and collaborating with others is one of my greatest strengths.’
Teamwork, or the ability to collaborate effectively, is another of the many skills that employers really value in their employees, and so it behoves you to mention this in an interview.
‘The vast majority of jobs (and companies) need employees who have high emotional intelligence and thrive working in a group environment,” says Alexander Lowry, Executive Director of the Career and Connection Institute, Gordon College. ‘Convincing a hiring manager this is a strength of yours will be an important check box.’
As is the case when you indicate to an employer that you have good problem-solving skills, however, you must have an example or two of your ability to collaborate in order to back this statement up.
9. ‘If I were hired, one of the things I would keep my eye on is…’
Employers will appreciate the fact that, even before you’re hired, you’re making plans. However, be extremely careful here: in stating what you will be keeping your eye on, be sure not to say anything negative about the company, or anyone working there.
For example, if you were interviewing for a job as a sales representative, you might say something like: ‘One of the things I would keep my eye on is your new product line, because it has been seriously underperforming since its release.’ Now that may be true, but casting aspersions on a company’s reputation during an interview is one of the biggest mistakes you could possibly make. Furthermore, the person you’re interviewing with could well be the one responsible for that performance of that new product line.
A better response would be: ‘One of the things I would keep my eye on is the sales growth of your new product line, because from all indications, its sales are about to go through the roof!’
10. ‘I am self-motivated and goal-oriented.’
Every manager wants an employee that will get the job done with their own initiative. And, as previously discussed, employers place a strong emphasis on goal-setting.
‘No manager wants to spend all day managing their employees,’ says Lowry. ‘Managers don’t have time to micromanage. They prefer someone who can take an assignment and drive it to completion. Showing you bring this mentality separates you from the competition, as the hiring manager can envision you being successful in the role.’
As you can see, these statements can really have a positive impact on your interview and so they should be incorporated into your job search strategy. Just be sure that, as indicated several times above, you do your research on the company before the interview, and be prepared with plenty of examples from your own professional experience to back up your statements. Of course, these are things you should already be doing before any interview.
Meanwhile, you should only use these statements in the proper context, at a time when you can work them into the conversation in an organic fashion. Don’t try to force a statement in where it doesn’t belong or just blurt it out of nowhere.
Join the conversation! Have you ever used any of theese statements during a job interview? If so, how did the employer respond? Did using these statements help you land the job? Would your answer be different now than it was when you were first asked? Let us know in the comments section below!
This article is an updated version of an earlier article published on 6 May 2016.