Tell me how would you…

When you are interviewing at a senior level you are bound to be asked, “How would you…” at least once or twice in the interview.

Usually your answer is going to be a multistep process.

Emma, tell me how you would go about supporting the senior management team to deliver a TED talk in the next year?

  1. Well, I would introduce the coaches to the teams and pair the right coach with the right participant.
  2. Then introduce the programme, the logistics, time commitment and outcomes
  3. And then start a process of booking 121 meetings with participants.

A nice, neat, strategic step by step approach.  

If you know your stuff and you have done your prep you could probably answer with your eyes closed.  Which might suggest that you can execute as neatly and beautifully as you answered.  Job done – you’re hired!

But you are missing a valuable opportunity here.  

What could possibly go wrong with your plan?  Sounds counterintuitive doesn’t it to talk about what might go wrong?!  But by pointing out the potential pitfalls, the moments where the plan might not succeed and planning to mitigate for it – then you sound like a pragmatic expert with experience.

I suggested that we would tell all the participants about the logistics of the programme, the time commitment and what they can expect by the end of the coaching sessions.

The big pitfall?

Not everyone on the leadership team is going to want to do this (at first!).  So the initial part of this process is about education and understanding how important thought leadership is for the organisation and the individuals career progression into more senior roles.

We would need to help the participants discover their personal why for doing this, rather than just the organisational why.

So education and conversation need to be part of the plan, to prevent it from derailing at the start.

So if your new potential role requires you to build out a process, a product, a team or a new revenue stream – when telling your potential employer how you would go about it, don’t forget to tell them what the potential problems are going to be and how you will mitigate for them from the start of the process. 

If they have already thought about these issues you’ll sound like an expert.  If they haven’t thought about these issues before then they are going to want a lot more of your pragmatic thinking in their organisation making it far more likely they will offer you the role.

Would you like to nail your interview and land your dream role by being present, personable and persuasive?
If you want to book a coffee chat to discuss how you can be more present, personable and persuasive in an interview, then you can do that here.

If you are already sold on the idea then you can learn more about the programme  here. 

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