There are certain questions that are bound to pop up in a majority of job interviews, and one of these is, “Why should we hire you?” Believe it or not, simply saying that you are the best is not likely to win a hiring manager over (even if it is true). There is actually a hidden component to this question that many interviewees often overlook and that part is: “Why should we hire you…over everyone else?” An employer will likely interview a ton of candidates in order to find the perfect person for the job. As experienced and skilled as you might be, there are probably many other people who have similar backgrounds or similar skillsets. You need to answer this question in a way that shows you have something to offer this company that no one else can.
Most candidates who go in for an interview could probably perform the job adequately. This question is your chance to sell yourself and show that you will go above and beyond the call of duty to provide stellar results. Interviewers are looking for someone who will be an integral part of the team or has skills no one else is bringing to the table. At the end of the day, employers are looking for someone who will make their lives easier. Convince them that you are that employee.
Answering “Why Should We Hire You?”
Although some people may think it is okay to wing it during a job interview, this is one question where you want to have a prepared response. You need to have a few skills or experiences you are proud of and are relevant to the position you are applying for. Although you can never be certain about where the other candidates are coming from, you should try to pick qualities of yourself that other people are not likely to have as well.
For example, if you have experience performing the exact duties that are required of someone in this position, then you should definitely mention that. Other applicants might be coming in with less experience, so use that aspect to your advantage. Any awards you have won are also an impressive detail to bring up. If you are applying for a chef position and the previous restaurant you worked at won Best Diner four years in a row, then that is an accomplishment that an interviewer would want to hear. The chances of someone else being able to claim something like that are very slim.
An important aspect that needs to be part of your response is confidence. If you have to pause constantly throughout your answer, then that might make the interviewer think you do not know what makes you stand out. You do not want the hiring manager to think for a single second that you are not qualified for the job. The best way to show your confidence is to practice your answer beforehand. Schedule a mock interview with someone and have them give you notes on your response to this question. You could also record yourself answering this question to see for yourself if you are pausing or mumbling over key points.
How Not to Answer, “Why Should We Hire You?”
Although modesty can be a desirable trait, a job interview is not the time to be humble. You need to use this opportunity to sell yourself and talk about all the traits you possess that make you the perfect employee. Naturally, you need to back up any claims that you are the perfect candidate with examples of your past work. You can also use this question to quote other people, like former bosses, who have given you high praise. The hiring manager can confirm these claims by contacting your references.
You also want to avoid being too vague. Saying something like, “I’ve been a real team player at my past jobs” without offering any examples will make the hiring manager think you are just saying you are a team player to impress him or her. At the same time, you also do not want to go into an abundance of details about your qualifications. Two to four points should be sufficient, but any more than that and the interviewer is likely to stop paying attention. A detailed, informational and concise response is the best way to go about responding to this inquiry.