Jacks-Of-All-Trades Don’t Get Interviews Because…

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As a career coach, I get a lot of emails that go something like this:

Dear J.T.,

I lost my job after working for more than ____ years at the same company. In that time, I had a variety of responsibilities. I worked in a half-dozen departments. As the company changed, I would take on new projects as needed. I was a “Jack-of-all-trades.”

I thought when I lost my job I’d find it easy to get a new one because of all I have done. I’ve got so many skills and abilities, my resume is three pages long. And yet, I can’t seem to get an interview. As I research positions on job boards, I find myself saying, “I can do that!” But, having applied to over 40 jobs, I’ve yet to get a single interview.

What am I doing wrong?

The answer is simple: When you try to look like a match for everything, you match nothing.

A Job Opening = Specific Problem To Solve

When a company has an open position, what they really have is a particular problem that needs to be solved. The person choose to hire will be the one that can solve the problem the best and is priced right. When you are marketing dozens of things about yourself, a/k/a being a Jack-of-all-trades, you overwhelm hiring managers. In fact, you distract them to the point they are unable to see you as a match. Not only do you appear overqualified, but they may also assume you are overpriced as well…resulting in your resume going in the “no” pile.(Here’s a good example of a Jack-of-all-trades who needed to revamp his LinkedIn profile in order to finally stand out to employers.)

The Solution? Become A “Swiss Army Knife” Instead

If you find yourself in the Jack-of-all-trades situation, I suggest you re-tool yourself to appear more like a Swiss Army Knife: be clear in what each of your key skills is good for and demonstrate them with precision. Here’s what to do:

Step 1: Identify the top 5 skill sets you want to leverage in your next position. You have many skills, but you need to focus hiring managers on the skills you are most passionate about using on a daily basis so you can find a job that plays to your strengths.

Step 2: Map out how those skills support an employer in solving a problem. Clarify how will you use these skills specifically to save and/or make the company money. Ask yourself, “What pain will I alleviate when I utilize these skills for an employer?”

Step 3: Quantify your track record of success in these key skills. You need to be able to back up your abilities with facts. Articulate examples of how you have used each of these skills to help an employer so you can justify the cost of hiring you.

Step 4: Optimize your career tools (i.e. resume & LinkedIn profile), so they reflect your problem solving expertise using the skill sets you chose to showcase. Simplify these documents so the text clearly supports your area of focus. Less is more. Give hiring managers enough information to confirm you can do the specific job without overwhelming them. Your career tools should say, “I can do the job you need, but you’ll need to contact me to learn more.” (Here’s an article where I explain why your resume has only 6 seconds to get a recruiter’s attention.)

Finally, Don’t Forget To…

Once you’ve gone from branding yourself as a generalist to a specialist, you need to do one more thing: start a proactive job search. Just because you revamped your professional identity to be better suited for specific jobs, doesn’t mean employers will start responding to your online applications. If you really want to get an employer’s attention, you need to increase your networking efforts so you can spread the word about your special problem solving abilities as a way to get referred into positions. (This article maps out why your resume is useless without the right networking strategy.)

What other tips can readers share to deal with the Jack-of-all-trades challenge? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

P.S. – First time reading my posts? Thanks for taking the time to stop by! Not only do I write for Linkedin, but I’m also founder of the career advice site, CAREEREALISM, and currently run the career coaching program, CareerHMO. I hope you’ll check them both out!

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Top Job Interview Tips

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Interview Skills – what really makes a difference?

It’s all pressure isn’t it? Not only do we live and work in a fast paced world, but we also have to be ever adaptable in the world of work, ever-ready to adjust that CV, explore and list our transferable skills, and so on. There’s so much good free information out there these days about how to structure your CV and application forms, that I suspect this has directly impacted on the increasing levels of post-interview disappointment that I am always reading about. Why? Because we’ve become so much better at the “getting the interview” part, that candidates are often failing to then “walk the walk” during the interview. I’ll cover this point in one of the tips.
So, what can be done to improve your chances at the next job interview? I have a number of practical tips for your tool kit. Which ones you adopt will be a matter of personal choice. I advocate all of them of course!

“6 of the best” Job Interview Tips:

• Be tuned in, switched on in advance: At least 30 minutes before you even enter the building, get “in the zone”, relax, breathe, tune in, and be absolutely on your game. Don’t leave it until you walk in the building to tune in.

• “Walk the walk”:
You have ticked all of the boxes in the JD, but do you have relevant and engaging stories for the panel that demonstrate that what you put down on paper lives and breathes for you. These anecdotes should be “locked and loaded” – ready to pull out of the bag as needed during the questions

• Rehearsals!:
This relates to the above point. I’d like you to dig a bit deeper, work a bit harder, at the whole rehearsing the potential answers you might give (to key questions which you will be able to anticipate, knowing the role’s requirements). They should be rehearsed aloud, not in your head. Get used to the sound of your voice, and it’ll pay dividends in terms of confidence and credibility.

• Better company research:
A no brainer? Perhaps, but again, candidates are getting smarter at this. You can download an annual report, get tuned into the company’s vision and objectives of course, but how about connecting with a few (non panel) employees via social networking, and finding out what the key issues are in the company?

• Post interview note:
You will no doubt in the past have followed up an interview with an email note thanking the interviews for their time, and briefly reiterating why you feel you’re right for the role. But how about a hand written, hand delivered card? This can be written out before hand, and left at reception as you leave (or if you’re walked right to the door, then pop back just after!). I’ve know this gesture work many times on a number of levels. The main one is, whether you get the job or not, you will be remembered for such a personalized way of saying thank you. If that idea doesn’t work for you, then a follow up email is a must.

• It’s a business meeting:
This is all about state of mind. If you truly view the interview as a business meeting, it will change the way you approach things slightly – you’ll feel a bit more like you’re sharing the “driving seat”, and I’ve known many cases where the candidate has been successful by adopting this mind-set.

The tips I’ve proposed are assuming you’ve got all the basics locked down; good body language, using their words in the interview, etc. Who’s to say which tips, from any source, are the definitive ones? What I always try to do is add that extra few % for my clients that will make the difference.

Stop Spending Time With Toxic People

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English: A chocolate birthday cake

English: A chocolate birthday cake (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Chocolate cake in ramekin - Yum :)

Chocolate cake in ramekin – Yum 🙂 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cover of "No B.S. Time Management for Ent...

Cover via Amazon

Stop Spending Time With Toxic People

In his book No B.S. Time Management for Entrepreneurs, business coach and consultant Dan Kennedy reveals the steps behind making the most of your frantic, time-pressured days so you can turn time into money. In this edited excerpt, the author explains the people you spend time with affect your productivity and why you should carefully choose who to associate with.

One of the most significant things you can control is association — your choices of who you permit into your world, who you give time to or invest time with, and who you look to for ideas, information and education. The people around you rarely have a neutral effect. They either facilitate your accomplishment, they undermine it, or they sabotage it outright.

The first useful association tactic is the elimination of toxic people and saboteurs. It’s not an easy thing to face facts about a friend, family member, long-time employee or long-time vendor when they are, in some way, interfering with or disapproving of your accomplishment. It’s important to face these facts and to act on them because the more time you spend with people who are unhelpful, unsupportive, disrespectful, envious, resentful, dysfunctional or outright damaging to you, the less value all your time has.

These people don’t just harm the minutes you and they are in the same place. Few people can so perfectly compartmentalize that they can lock every thought, assertion and act of a toxic person in a little mind box and without leakage into other mind boxes. Paraphrasing a Chinese proverb (I found in a fortune cookie), if you lie down with mongrel dogs, even for a short nap, you wake up with fleas — and they ride with you wherever you go.

Ideas, beliefs, opinions and habits work just like that. Even if you’re associating only occasionally or briefly with someone who is intellectually or emotionally toxic or someone who is feckless and inept, it’s enough time for the fleas to leap from them to you, burrow in and be carried away by you to subtly affect your performance and productivity. If your creativity or constructive thinking or work performance is thus diminished, so is the value of your time.

People who are detrimental for you to associate with are not necessarily of evil intent. They may all be “good people,” but that doesn’t mean they’re good for you. Good chocolate cake is not good for a diabetic. In fact, it’s poison. Associating with somebody who is always pushing it to you, saying “Just have a tiny piece” is just as suicidal as baking it for yourself.

There are lots of ways a person can be toxic and poisonous to you. I’ve had clients describe how recurring disputes with a particular employee were mentally exhausting but couldn’t be helped because otherwise, that person was a great asset. The “otherwise” is a big problem. Many small businesses wind up with a ruthlessly defensive key person who goes into murder mode anytime an attempt is made to add a second person but is “otherwise” terrific.

There’s the “we tried that before” guy. If it were up to him, we’d light the place with candles because Edison would have been limited to one try. There’s the “constructive critic,” always making you feel inadequate or undeserving, in the guise of being a cautionary ally worrying over you stubbing a toe.

On the other hand, constructive association with creative, inspiring, encouraging people can do a great deal to bolster your performance, thus making your time more valuable. Each minute of your time is made more or less valuable by the condition of your mind, and it is constantly being conditioned by association.

The entrepreneur is particularly susceptible to gaining or losing power by association because he has so many diverse responsibilities and is often operating under pressure, duress and urgency. Playing this game in a compromised mental state, weakened or wounded by poor ideas and attitudes seeded into the mind by association, is extremely difficult. Playing it strengthened and empowered by rich ideas and attitudes seeded into the mind by association can make the difficult easy.

Simply put, you want to deliberately reduce and restrict the amount of your time left vulnerable to random thought or association, and deliberately, sharply reduce the amount of time given to association with people who won’t make any productive contribution and may do harm. Does that mean you can only spend time with people you are in complete philosophical agreement with? No. In fact, such isolationism can be dangerous. But it does mean you should avoid association with people who believe and promulgate beliefs diametrically opposed to “success orientation.”

You want to deliberately increase the amount of your time directed at chosen thinking and input, and constructive, productive association. You want to associate with strivers and achievers, with winners and champions. This is an uplifting force that translates into peak performance, which makes all your time more valuable.

Read more: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230270?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+entrepreneur%2Flatest+%28Entrepreneur%29#ixzz2okOC66Pu

The Donkey Philosophy

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Traditional Animal Nickname: Donkeys/les ânes

Traditional Animal Nickname: Donkeys/les ânes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One day a farmer’s donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway; it just wasn’t worth it to retrieve the donkey.

He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone’s amazement he quieted down.

A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up.

As the farmer’s neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily trotted off!

MORAL :
Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up. Each of our troubles is a steppingstone. We can get out of the deepest wells just by not stopping, never giving up! Shake it off and take a step up.

Remember the five simple rules to be happy:

1. Free your heart from hatred – Forgive.

2. Free your mind from worries – Most never happen.

3. Live simply and appreciate what you have.

4. Give more.

5. Expect less from people but more from yourself.

19 Things You’ll Only Appreciate If You Studied Abroad

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Manneken Pis in diving suit (April 2007)

Manneken Pis in diving suit (April 2007) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Manneken Pis Brussel

Manneken Pis Brussel (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Manneken Pis statue on platform of JR Hamamats...

Manneken Pis statue on platform of JR Hamamatsucho station in Tokyo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Manneken pis

Manneken pis (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Close up of Manneken Pis in Belgian P...

English: Close up of Manneken Pis in Belgian Pride orange colours. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

19 Things You’ll Only Appreciate If You Studied Abroad

 

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GET TRAVEL NEWSLETTERS:

Because as someone famous once said, “the best things you learn aren’t learned in a classroom.”

1. Contrary to every mother’s belief, you won’t even feel sick if you eat gelato for every meal.
Or pizza. Or crepes. Or empanadas. Or anything in the top, bad-for-you section of the food pyramid. We’re on a budget here, people.

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2. Humans are inherently kind.
Strangers will go far, far out of their way to help you get around. All you must do is ask sincerely and thank copiously.
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3. Just because something is in a guidebook doesn’t mean you have to go look at it.
Exhibit A: Manneken-Pis.
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4. It’s better for everyone if we just pretend Euros are dollars.
Just forget the exchange rate, and stop converting every price to dollars in your head. It causes too much pain.

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5. Ryanair seats do not recline.
…but you could’ve guessed that from the prices.

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6. America is not the center of the universe.
There are other people living on this planet, and they live differently than we do, and they are really happy that way. It’s an awesome thing to realize.
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7. Doner kebab as drunk food is one thousand times better than nachos as drunk food.
Mostly because nobody’s really sure which animal that shaved meat comes from. What a fun, mysterious taste bud adventure!
doner kebab

8. Every person in a hostel is a potential best friend.
And sometimes they’ll agree to travel with you for days or weeks, after knowing you for a mere day. Voilà! Lifelong pals!

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9. Trains don’t always depart when they say they will.
…or ever.

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10. It is not only possible, but socially permissible, to wear the same outfit for seven days in a row 
How else are you going to fit your suitcase into the easyJet carry-on box? All you really need are a few colored scarves… that way, people won’t notice the same T-shirt recurring in photo after photo.

11. English truly is the universal language.
And people who are learning English looove to practice it with you, even if they don’t make sense.

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12. Dinnertime in America is seriously warped.
Why did the Founding Fathers decide to eat at six when everybody else on the planet waits till 10?

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13. Spontaneity is rewarded.
Like that time you snagged the one Euro flight to Finland in an online promo. Or when you bought a last-minute ticket to the show in Ibiza. They weren’t the most logical decisions, to be sure, but they’re memories you’ll replay in your mind forever.
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14. Nothing bonds you like traveling. 
The way to know if you’re truly friends with someone? Food poisoning from the street fruit. Or a seven-hour bus delay. Or Wizz Air.

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15. Studying abroad involves, on average, about four minutes of actual studying.
Shh, don’t tell.

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16. Taxi drivers are some of the greatest people on Earth.
They just love to talk. And they’re so enthusiastic. And they drive you places so you don’t get lost like usual.
doner kebab

17. Traveling solo reveals hidden talents. 
You wouldn’t have thought you could navigate a Czech subway without a map… but you did.

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18. The Guinness Storehouse is a legitimate historical site.
No, we’re not proud of this fact. But at this point, it’s pretty much true.
guinness storehouse

19. Study abroaders are incredibly lucky people.
Very few humans get to spend carefree months exploring the world beyond their hometown, let alone during college. To study abroad is a privilege, and an awesome one at that.
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The Case Against Multivitamins Grows Stronger

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Generic structure of the vitamins K

Generic structure of the vitamins K (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

English: Suggested mapping of several bone dis...

English: Suggested mapping of several bone diseases onto a person’s Vitamin D level (as estimated from the serum concentation of calcidiol). Based on Heaney RP (Dec 2004). “Functional indices of vitamin D status and ramifications of vitamin D deficiency Full Text”. Am J Clin Nutr 80 (6 Suppl) : 1706S–9S. PMID 15585791. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In some countries, milk and cereal grains are ...

In some countries, milk and cereal grains are fortified with vitamin D. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Prenatal vitamins contain higher levels of iro...

Prenatal vitamins contain higher levels of iron and folic acid, compared with typical multivitamins (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

vitamin 6, b12, b36

vitamin 6, b12, b36 (Photo credit: Iqbal Osman1)

Vitamins

Vitamins (Photo credit: DBduo Photography)

The Case Against Multivitamins Grows Stronger

 

Though some people might need more of specific vitamins, multivitamins don't help most people, studies say.

Though some people might need more of specific vitamins, multivitamins don’t help most people, studies say.

iStockphoto

When I was growing up my mom gave me a multivitamin every day as a defense against unnamed dread diseases.

But it looks like Mom was wasting her money. Evidence continues to mount that vitamin supplements don’t help most people and can actually cause diseases that people are taking them to prevent, like cancer.

Three studies published Monday add to multivitamins’ bad rap. One review found no benefit in preventing early death, heart disease or cancer. Another found that taking multivitamins did nothing to stave off cognitive decline with aging. A third found that high-dose multivitamins didn’t help people who had had one heart attack avoid another.

“Enough is enough,” declares an editorial accompanying the studies in Annals of Internal Medicine. “Stop wasting money on vitamin and mineral supplements.”

But enough is not enough for the American public. We spend $28 billion a year on vitamin supplements and are projected to spend more. About 40 percent of Americans take multivitamins, the editorial says.

Even people who know about all these studies showing no benefit continue to buy multivitamins for their families. Like, uh, me. They couldn’t hurt, right?

In most cases, no. But $28 billion is a lot to spend on a worthless medical treatment. So I called up Steven Salzberg, a professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins who has written about Americans’ love affair with vitamins, to find out why we’re so reluctant to give up the habit.

“I think this is a great example of how our intuition leads us astray,” Salzberg told Shots. “It seems reasonable that if a little bit of something is good for you, then more should be better for you. It’s not true. Supplementation with extra vitamins or micronutrients doesn’t really benefit you if you don’t have a deficiency.”

Vitamin deficiencies can kill, and that discovery has made for some great medical detective stories. Salzberg points to James Lind, a Scottish physician who proved in 1747 that citrus juice could cure scurvy, which had killed more sailors than all wars combined. It was not until much later that scientists discovered that the magic ingredient was vitamin C.

Lack of vitamin D causes rickets. Lack of niacin causes pellagra, which was a big problem in the Southern U.S. in the early 1900s. Lack of vitamin A causes blindness. And lack of folic acid can cause spina bifida, a crippling deformity.

Better nutrition and vitamin-fortified foods have made these problems pretty much history.

Now when public health officials talk about vitamin deficiencies and health, they’re talking about specific populations and specific vitamins. Young women tend to be low on iodine, which is key for brain development in a fetus, according to a 2012 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And Mexican-American women and young children are more likely to be iron deficient. But even in that group, we’re talking about 11 percent of the children, and 13 percent of the women.

Recent studies have shown that too much beta carotene and vitamin E can cause cancer, and it’s long been known that excess vitamin Acan cause liver damage, coma and death. That’s what happened to Arctic explorers when they ate too much polar bear liver, which is rich in vitamin A.

“You need a balance,” Salzberg says. But he agrees with theAnnals editorial — enough already. “The vast majority of people taking multivitamins and other supplemental vitamins don’t need them. I don’t need them, so I stopped.”

I’m still struggling with the notion that mother didn’t know best. But maybe when the current bottle of kids’ chewable vitamins runs out, I won’t buy more.

9 CEOs Share Their Favorite Interview Question

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English: Washington, DC, August 29, 2006 - Gle...

English: Washington, DC, August 29, 2006 – Glenn Cannon, FEMA’s Director of Response answers an interview question for a reporter at the FEMA Video Studio. FEMA/Bill Koplitz (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

tony hsieh, ceo, zappos.com

tony hsieh, ceo, zappos.com (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Image representing David Gilboa as depicted in...

Image by None via CrunchBase

Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...

Image via CrunchBase

9 CEOs Share Their Favorite Interview Question

Getty Images/Ethan Miller

Tony Hsieh

If you could ask job candidates only one question, what would be most telling?

As it turns out, many CEOs have one go-to interview question that they believe reveals everything they need to know about a candidate. Some swear by serious questions about a candidate’s best accomplishment. Others believe that silly queries about holiday costumes and the zombie apocalypse best reveal a candidate’s creativity.

From Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh to Warby Parker CEO David Gilboa, we’ve collected top interview questions from the following nine company leaders.

On a scale of one to 10, how weird are you?

On a scale of one to 10, how weird are you?

REUTERS/Danny Moloshok

Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos

One of Zappos’ core values is to “create fun and a little weirdness,” Tony Hsieh, CEO of the company, tells Business Insider.

To make sure he hires candidates with the right fit, Hsieh typically asks the question: “On a scale of one to 10, how weird are you?” He says the number isn’t too important, but it’s more about how people answer the question. Nonetheless, if “you’re a one, you probably are a little bit too straight-laced for the Zappos culture,” he says. “If you’re a 10, you might be too psychotic for us.”

Another question Zappos usually asks candidates is: “On a scale of one to 10, how lucky are you in life?” Again, the number doesn’t matter too much, but if you’re a one, you don’t know why bad things happen to you (and probably blame others a lot). And if you’re a 10, you don’t understand why good things always seem to happen to you (and probably lack confidence).

Tell me about the time you realized you had the power to do something meaningful.

Tell me about the time you realized you had the power to do something meaningful.

InternetNews via YouTube

Simon Anderson, CEO of DreamHost

Simon Anderson, CEO of DreamHost, a web hosting provider and domain name registrar, says he asks one question to determine what motivates candidates: “Tell me about the first experience in your life when you realized that you had the power of change or the power to do something meaningful.”

“It’s open-ended. Some people might tell the story of when they were five and there was some incident and they had to take more responsibility for their baby brother or sister,” he tells The New York Times. “Maybe it was from their teenage years: ‘Something bad was going to happen at school and I stood up for this friend of mine and all of a sudden I felt self-empowered to do things.’ I think that’s really important. If someone sits there and they’re stumped, I think that tells you something.”

How would you describe yourself in one word?

How would you describe yourself in one word?

YWCA

Dara Richardson-Heron, CEO of YWCA

The best candidates are the ones who know exactly who they are. That’s why Dara Richardson-Heron, CEO of women’s organization YWCA, always asks her candidates this question.

Richardson-Heron says she doesn’t judge people on the word they choose, but it does give her insight into how people package themselves. She tells Adam Bryant at The New York Times that she likes when people take time to ponder the question and answer thoughtfully.

What would you do in the event of a zombie apocalypse?

What would you do in the event of a zombie apocalypse?

Screenshot from YouTube

Ashely Morris, CEO of Capriotti’s

This seems like a ridiculous question to ask, but it’s posed to every prospective employee at Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop, a national restaurant franchise. Ashley Morris, the company’s CEO, says it’s the best way to learn how candidates react under pressure.

“There really is no right answer, so it’s interesting to get someone’s opinion and understand how they think on their feet,” Morris explains. “The hope is that for us, we’re going to find out who this person is on the inside and what’s really important to him, what his morals really are, and if he’ll fit on the cultural level.”

Tell me about the last person you fired.

Tell me about the last person you fired.

Courtesy of Marc Barros

Marc Barros, CEO of Contour

Marc Barros, cofounder and former CEO of camera company Contour, swears by this question. “Of all the ways I interviewed executive candidates, this question and the discussion that followed proved to be the strongest indicator of the candidate’s leadership ability,” he tells Inc.

Barros believes a candidate who claims to have never fired anyone is clearly a bad choice. “You can’t build a great team without occasionally deconstructing and rebuilding it,” he argues.

If the candidate has fired someone, then he focuses on how the process went, which reveals a great deal about their communication skills. Did they offer feedback to the person and explain their reasoning for the decision? Barros says great leaders are like coaches, constantly giving feedback.

Tell me about your failures.

Tell me about your failures.

Museum of Chinese in America

Jenny Ming, CEO of Charlotte Russe

A good answer to this question is important because it means that the candidate isn’t afraid of taking risks and will admit when things don’t work out, says Jenny Ming, president and CEO of clothing store Charlotte Russe.

“It doesn’t even have to be business; it could be life lessons. I think it’s pretty telling. What did they do afterward?” she says. “How did they overcome that? I always look for somebody who’s very comfortable admitting when something didn’t work out.”

People always like to tell you about their successes, she explains, but they don’t always want to tell you what didn’t work out so well for them.

What was the last costume you wore?

What was the last costume you wore?

Colin Hughes/Courtesy Warby Parker

Dave Gilboa and Neil Blumenthal, CEOs of Warby Parker

It doesn’t matter so much what they wore, but why they wore it. If the candidate’s reasoning matches Warby Parker’s core value of injecting “fun and quirkiness into work, life, and everything [they] do,” they might have a real shot at getting a job there.

“We find that people who are able to make the job environment fun build followership more easily,” the company’s cofounder and co-CEO David Gilboa tells Iris Mansour at Quartz. “If we hire the most technically skilled person in the world whose work style doesn’t fit here, they won’t be successful.”

Tell me about your crowning achievement.

Tell me about your crowning achievement.

Courtesy of The Adler Group

Lou Adler, CEO of The Adler Group

Lou Adler, CEO of hiring services company The Adler Group, says he always asks candidates to talk about their crowning achievement or most significant accomplishment. That question not only tells you what energizes the applicant, but also helps you figure out if their interests and passions align with yours.

“The idea is that if you understand someone’s most significant accomplishment or crowning achievement, and really are willing to spend 20 minutes understanding it, then you know what motivates the person,” Adler tells Business Insider.

Tell me about your last project. Who was involved and what was the biggest challenge?

Tell me about your last project. Who was involved and what was the biggest challenge?

ijeggers via YouTube

Jana Eggers, CEO of Spreadshirt

To get a sense of how people work, Jana Eggers, former CEO of personalized clothing company Spreadshirt, likes to ask candidates about projects they’ve worked on.

“I’m interested in seeing how they organized themselves, how they think about projects, how they think about other people around them,” Eggers tells The New York Times. “There are very few jobs in any company these days where one person goes in and does it alone. They always have to interact with other people.”

BONUS: Give me an example of a time when you solved an analytically difficult problem.

BONUS: Give me an example of a time when you solved an analytically difficult problem.

Commonwealth Club via YouTube

Laszlo Bock, SVP of people operations at Google

Laszlo Bock, senior vice president of people operations at Google, says the company ditched its famous brainteaser interview questions in recent years for behavioral ones.

“The interesting thing about the behavioral interview is that when you ask somebody to speak to their own experience, and you drill into that, you get two kinds of information,” Bock tells The New York Times. “One is you get to see how they actually interacted in a real-world situation, and the valuable ‘meta’ information you get about the candidate is a sense of what they consider to be difficult.”

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