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The Secret to Preparing for Targeted Selection Interviews

Candidates give answers they think employers want to here. Employers are using targeted selection interviewing to gain a whole new perspective on you.  If you are in the interview your resume has wowed the recruiter or hiring manager enough to want to get to know more about you.

Now What?

Understand what problem the employer is trying to solve with this position.  Did they receive a new client and thus a new project?  Are they pursuing a new stream of revenue?  Did recent internal changes open this position up? Find out from the interviewer the exact problem(s) they seek to solve with this role.

Why it’s important

Because, the company is looking for a problem-solver.  Combine your research and creative thinking to create a solution.  Let your imagination soar when thinking of a solution.  You will want something that standouts and wasn’t thought of by their team. No well-thought out idea will go unnoticed. Even if their team has thought about it or it won’t work you’ll win points for having brainstormed.

Take a deep breath and…

Think on your past experience.   What projects didn’t go as planned and needed your direct input to get back on track. Did you improve your departments spending?  Did you manage a marketing campaign or event?  Did you find an error that saved your client money?  Write out 5 well-thought out answers for targeted selection questions using the S.T.A.R. method.

You already have what it takes to win

Most people doubt they have “important” or “meaningful” examples, but they do they personally just don’t feel grandiose about them.  They only way to fix that is to kill A.N.T.S. (automatic negative thoughts); KILL THEM.  Think about the parts of your job that you enjoyed the most, even if only temporary.

There is no substitute for experience

Targeted selection helps employers draw out your experience. Don’t bother with stocked baloney answers.  Employers know a stocked answer when they hear it.  They can tell because the candidate answers the question immediately without pause to pondering. This is going to reflect on your work style. That’s why they are turning to targeted selection and competency-based interview styles. It helps them weed out stocked, baloney, over-prepared answers.

Nothing works like STAR

The STAR technique enables you to craft great stories (which get remembered more than plain answers). Yet, STAR is only the beginning of giving an outstanding answer to a targeted selection question.  After you create your answer relate it to the job role. This will get employers thinking of you in the role boost you to the top of the offer list.

But that’s not all

Give the solution you created to put the icing on the cake and seal you as the selected candidate.  They are going to love that you have an answer because it shows you already placed yourself in that role. It shows that you don’t just want a job you want this job.

To recap,

  • Find out the problem,
  • create a solution,
  • think of your experience (kill ANTS),
  • create 5 STAR answers for targeted selection or competency-based interview questions, kill ANTS,
  • relate your STAR back to the job role,
  • and finally deliver the solution in an interview.

Finally tips

Each answer should take about 3 minutes. Use industry vocabulary, and practice your answers aloud (simple yet rarely done).