9 mind tricks you need to use to make the hiring manager like you

As you’re heading into a job interview there are two possible places your mind will go naturally gravitate toward: you’ve either got this in the bag or you don’t.

There are a select few tricks that will make your chances of getting a call back that much more certain.

Whether you’re worried about being liked by the hiring manager or you just really want to lock down your dream job as soon as possible, here are the top mind tricks you need to make the hiring manager warm up to you immediately.

1. Be honest

A great way to make the hiring manager like you is to be honest and not lie to them. If you have some things in your career that you are not proud of them, own up to them and they will be more appreciative of that.

If you hide anything, or let them see your resume and not answer these questions, they may not see you as a fit for the company because you cannot be honest.

“Everyone has made decisions they are not proud of, but the best thing to do is to always be honest,” shares Ethan Taub, CEO of Goalry.

“Honesty can help you in a lot of situations, including in this situation with the hiring manager.”

2. Forge a bond

“One way to make the hiring manager like you is to connect with them over something they say. If you can find and bond over something you both have in common, they will be much more likely to both like and remember you,” explains Stacy Caprio, Founder of Her.CEO.

“Even better, take this and include it in your thank you note, and they will be impressed that you remembered as well as reminded of your common interest and how they enjoyed talking to you.”

3. Drop a fun fact

Mike Shoreman, Corporate Wellness Expert and Best-Selling Author of Diaries of the Unbalanced Paddleboarder, suggests impressing the hiring managers by showing research has been done about the company.

“When the interviewer asks the potential employee a question to demonstrate the candidates research, drop a fun historical fact about the company they may not know—or a link.”

For example if the employer is a legal firm, research the founder and tie in that fact with an interest or current event the interviewer may be interested in. This also requires researching the interviewer and shows you have your detective hat on and creative.

4. Understand the overarching culture

Some firms have a more relaxed, down to earth corporate culture whereas some do not. It’s not enough to dress the part for the interview, the potential employee has to talk the talk and show understanding of the company, the position, the expectations while dropping nuggets of gold into the interview to show understanding and what they can bring to the table,” explains Shoreman.

5. Practice makes perfect

Every organization uses different interview formats, it’s part of their culture. Some will use standard leadership questions while some will ask case questions or quick thinking problem solving.

“Asking the HR contact or recruiter about the interview format before the interview is completely allowed,” says Shoreman.

“This allows the potential employee the opportunity to rehearse and become comfortable quickly.”

6. Flex both soft and hard skills

“In my opinion, the best way to make a hiring manager like you is to add a mix of soft and hard skills,” shares Shad Elia, CEO of New England Home Buyers.

“Just like everyone else looking for a long-term commitment, recruiters also appreciate being met with a well-rounded person. So keep in mind that soft skills are important in any job, even if it is highly technical.”

The technical description and skills portion of a resume, where the correct combination of hard and soft skills shows the recruiter you’re qualified and have the personal characteristics that will help you excel, are maybe the most important areas to demonstrate this versatility.

7. Be authentically you

“We all want to be liked, and there’s no doubt about that. However we should always be more mindful in the professional setting,” says Sherry Morgan, Founder of Petsolino.

“Impressing the hiring manager is not an easy catch. They are experts and have probably worked with a lot of people already making them more versatile about what they do, which means they can notice even the slightest inch of being pretentious.”

The best thing you can do is to be authentic, in a professional sense? Be honest about certain questions, such as what you can and cannot do, but always give them the backup that you are willing to learn more things should you be given the opportunity. 

8. Be polite!

Make sure to be polite to not only the interviewer, but everyone who works there. Giving the right first impression to a team as a whole makes the hiring manager think about how well you would fit into the team.

“Getting on the good sides of the team members means that those people who already work where you applied are more likely to put in a good word,” shares Emily Moore, Executive Assistant at Colorescience.

9. Get the first impression right

According to Thomas Hawkins, Hiring Manager at Electrician Apprentice HQ, the best way to make a hiring manager like you is to make a stellar first impression.

“Come to the interview dressed professionally and start the interview off with a firm handshake. Smile throughout the interview when appropriate and be prepared to answer all stock interview questions (which you can pre-prepare for). And never bash an old boss or company. Keep the discussion as positive as possible.”