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You know it’s coming — and you know you need a stellar answer. And yet, many professionals stumble over this inevitable interview question: ‘Why should we hire you?’
However, you are still wooing and impressing the recruiter or hiring manager, and it’s essential to have a convincing answer to this question. So what hits the mark and gets the job offer?
Here, we spoke with four experienced recruiters who provide the best answers they’ve ever received in their tenure:
“I will do whatever I can to be a part of this company. I will put in the time and work hard to earn the position I want to be in.”
Read that again. Who wouldn’t want to have this team player on their payroll? For Theresa Casarin, the vice president of talent for Creative Niche, this was a standout response in her 14-year recruiting career. How come? She’s interviewed countless people who feel they should be in an executive-level role but only after a couple of years in the field.
Of course, this isn’t a realistic viewpoint, especially since it takes time, commitment, and many learning lessons to be ready for a seat at the table. That’s why this speech nails it — and got the candidate the gig.
“This response shows they have a strong will to grow into the role and with the company, no matter what it takes,” she continues. “It demonstrates that they’re motivated to do whatever it takes to get the job done and to find solutions to ensure there are no barriers. This type of response always impresses our clients and me.”
“This is my dream job. And this is why I’m the dream candidate for the role.”
In her multi-decade tenure hiring the right people for the right jobs, author and career expert Anne Corley Baum says the best answer she’s heard on ‘why should we hire you?’ told a story, provided specific reasons and yet, remained concise. “She told me it was her dream job and shared what made it her dream job. It was a perfect match, and she got the job,” she shares.
This method works because it provides pointed skills that will help the company achieve the results they expect from the role. Baum says if you have a story of how you have historically accomplished results that they seek, share that example.
And remember, be confident and enthusiastic in answering and avoid filler words like ‘kinda,’ ‘I think,’ or ‘maybe.’ “Have your words and demeanor show them you are confident in your ability to excel in the role and tell them how excited you are to take on the job,” she recommends. “Prepare the two or three skills that best match the job needs and explain why you are well suited to succeed in the role. Practice how you’ll deliver the message and speak clearly and concisely.”
“Here’s how I will make your job easier — and help the company grow.”
Jacob Nelson, the founder and principal consultant at Sorted Search, a NYC-based recruiting firm, has been finding top international talent for companies like Google, Twitter, Goldman Sachs, and others for more than 10 years.
He currently specializes in helping rising tech-startups hire key staff members. This gives him a pulse into what these leaders are looking for, and more often than not, it’s candidates who can step out of their regular day-to-day role and proactively identify and solve critical business problems.
Recently, a client was hiring a Director of Sales that would be responsible for building relationships with large enterprise customers. To prepare for the interview, one applicant asked another recruiter what kind of challenges were keeping the CEO up at night. And they read through the company’s press releases to get a sense of where they were and how they could help them meet goals.
“When this question came up during the interview with the CEO, they were prepared. Not only did they articulate how they would fulfill the responsibilities clearly listed in the job description, but they also went into detail about how they could develop channel partnerships with resellers, expand out the team’s current software management systems, and design a performance review program for all sales employees,” he shares. “These were all key projects that the executive team knew they would need to solve eventually. The candidate’s additional research paid off.”
And big time: Nelson says they beat out ten others, and eight months later, they were promoted to the vice president of sales and partnerships.
“Here are the values I will bring to the organization.”
Truthfully, Blair Crosby doesn’t ask the ‘why should we hire you’ question. Instead, as a senior recruiting manager for Dagger.Agency, she goes a different route, posing inquiries like ‘What makes you a team player?’ and ‘What values do you add to the team?’
She says one of the best answers she’s ever received was not just centered around the roles and responsibilities in the job description, but why the candidate would be a significant investment. “The candidate spoke not only about what values they add to the team but also the places in which they’d like to grow and develop a future with our team,” she continues. “The response showed me that they were committed to doing well at the moment but also demonstrated future-focused growth-mindedness.”
And you guessed it: they got the job!