Employers obviously want to work with people who are skilled in their given field and have the experiences necessary to be an immediate asset to the company. However, at the end of the day, they also want to work with someone they get along with and can spend time with virtually every day. They want someone whose personality is going to mesh well with theirs so that they can work together and complete projects together without incident. This does not necessarily mean that you have to completely overhaul your personality in order to be an exact duplicate of the interviewer, but you should be able to use the personality matching technique in order to mirror the personality of the hiring manager.
The technique of matching personalities is based on the fact that individuals like people who are similar to them. If a hiring manager sees a little bit of himself or herself in the job applicant, then there is going to be instant likability. Building up a good rapport with the interviewer is vital to the success of any job interview, so mastering this technique is a great way to give yourself a leg up over the competition.
Putting This Technique to Use
Although matching someone's personality might seem difficult unless you naturally already have it, there are certain tricks you can employ to make it appear as if you are on the employer's level. Very quickly, you should be able to pick up the pitch of the hiring manager's voice and the tempo at which he or she is speaking. If the voice is high-pitched and has a quick tempo, then you want to do your best to match that. Tempo is considered to be more important than pitch, so speak faster or slower depending on what you hear. This will subconsciously make the interviewer believe you are on the same level and will more readily enjoy your presence.
In addition to matching the interviewer's voice, you also want to try and match any physical characteristics that are on display. For instance, some people are very visual with their hands, so if a hiring manager moves his or her hands a lot while talking, you can try to do the same. You should also pay attention to posture and facial expressions to see what could be paralleled. An important aspect to keep in mind when employing this technique is to not become a mime of the interviewer. If you are literally copying everything the employer does, he or she is likely to notice, and they will think you are just trying to suck up. Be subtle but do your best to be as close a match as possible.
Being Aware of Your Own Personality Range
Some people are natural actors and can alter their personality range at a whim. Other people have a much narrower personality range, so matching a completely different level might be more difficult. If you have a wider range, you should learn to pick up someone's personality type very different so that you can accommodate at the drop of a hat. If you are aware that your personality range is narrow, then the worst thing you can do is to go out of your comfort zone to try to match someone else's persona.
If you have a very subdued personality and you are being interviewed by someone who is very bubbly and speaks at a quick tempo, do not try to fake that you are similar. Chances are that it will only come across as fake, and that is not going to earn you any special points in the hiring process. Do not pretend to be someone you are not just to get a job. However, you can try to learn what the top and bottom of your range is so that you can at least get close to what the hiring manager is putting out.
The most important thing to remember is that you do not want to become a perfect clone of the hiring manager. You just want to give off the impression that the two of you could work well together, even if your personalities are not a perfect match. No two people are going to agree on absolutely everything, but if your skills and experiences are good and you have a compatible outlook on life, you are much more likely to get along with your potential new employer.