#1 Top Tip for Better Job Applications & Interviews

If you don’t like interviews, you’re not alone! In our experience of delivering our Job Application & Interview Skills training course to well over 3500 NSW Government participants from many different agencies across regional and metropolitan NSW over the years, on average about 19 out of 20 in a group dislike interviews.

Like it or not, whatever job you’re going for in the Public or Private Sector, an interview will very likely be part of the process. Despite all the changes with the GSE Act Regulations & Rules and the 2013 NSW Public Sector Capability Framework, interviews are still an integral part of the NSW Government job application process.

The golden rule for interviews which we will explain in this article, is the most important thing you need to do that will have the single biggest impact on an application. It applies to applications and CVs, and in our experience about 85% of people don’t apply it, or don’t apply it properly.

We’ve seen a very wide cross-section of interviews and applications and have trained people across NSW Government including across NSW FACS (Housing, ADHC, LRCSSL-SS, FACS Royal Commission, Community Services), OEH, Dept of Premier & Cabinet, NSW Parliament, SRWSD, Fire & Rescue, to name a few. Our many Job Application & Interview Skills training program presenters have had a huge amount of experience recruiting, convening panels, and being independents, as well as recruitment in the private sector. Hence we know that the golden rule (mentioned above) is generally not well applied.

The Golden Rule is:

Make sure your answer contains a good result: an outcome or measure that shows you did a great job.

Most people are very good at explaining the thing they had to do, and most are pretty good at setting the scene and explaining the circumstances that led to them having to do the task in question. Most are OK at talking through the actions they did, or the process they had to do to achieve the outcome.

But, in our experience, 85%+ stop there. People often say what they did, but don’t give any outcome, any measure of success for telling the panel how well they did it. There’s no evidence to demonstrate they were good at it. And this applies equally for applications as well as interviews.

The panel may understand you do all the things you’ve stated. But how do they know you actually did them well and did a good job? Without a measured result, they won’t understand.

Without any measurement of results, they actually do not know for sure  that you’re capable of doing the job. Because just because you did that particular thing, it doesn’t mean you did it well!

Telling a story without a measurement of the outcome, is like watching a film halfway, and not knowing if the hero was successful at the end. It’s like someone ripping out the last few chapters of a ‘whodunit’ book, and you’ll never know if the detective was successful or not.

The panel need evidence to justify giving you the job. The results you’ve achieved are the measures of how well you do your job. Those results are the evidence they need, and so you need to give them what they require if you want the role.

So remember, the next time you’re answering an interview question or writing an application, make sure you’re adding a measured result to your answer.

The better the result, and the more you concentrate on the successful outcome that demonstrates your ability, the more likely you are to be successful in your applications and interviews. It will make a huge difference!

If you want to find out more about our customised in-house Job Application & Interview Skills training program and/or Career Coaching, please email us at [email protected], visit our website at www.southerncrosscoaching.com.au, or simply give us a call on 02 7901 5618.

Our Public Sector Job Application & Interview Skills program has been delivered to over 3500 participants in many Government agencies across regional and metropolitan NSW & QLD who have graded the course an average of 90+/100. Many have told us this is the best training they have ever done, and we have been invited back numerous times to deliver the program across State and Federal government.

Simon Smith – CEO and founder of Southern Cross Coaching and Development