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Strategically Speaking: Treat job interview like business presentation

When most people hear the words "business presentation" they think of a speech designed to introduce an idea, sell a product or report on a project. How about thinking of yourself as that "product" and using a few "presentation" techniques during your job interview? Once you've decided how to dress, have reviewed the type of questions you may be asked to answer, and are prepared for the structure of the interview, take a look at some strategies to "sell" yourself. Next, think how you can incorporate these points into answers to questions the interviewer will ask. Here are a few tips:

What makes you the best candidate for this job? Is it your education, your experience, your ability to work with others, your knowledge or your customer service skills? Or is it a combination of the above? Pick out the qualities that make your stand out from everyone else and think of yourself as a product. Now how do you engage the interviewer and what do you say about this product — you — that will make them choose you over anyone else?

Storytelling is an art, but it's a very effective tool. What work-related stories can you tell that reinforce the qualities and expertise you bring to the job? Feel free to use humor here as long as it is tasteful and appropriate to the situation.

Bring visuals. Do you have letters of commendation? Maybe a copy of an award you've won for job performance or through a professional organization? Were you or your team written up in the company newsletter? Or did a trade magazine or a newspaper do a story on the success of a project you led?

Visualize yourself as the successful candidate. Mentally "see" yourself as getting the job. Your confidence will come through your presentation.

There are probably many other strategies you can use if you put your mind to it. Just remember what Katy Perry said: "If you're presenting yourself with confidence, you can pull off pretty much anything."

Marie Stempinski is president and founder of Strategic Communication in St. Petersburg. She specializes in public relations, marketing and business development. She can be reached at or through her website

Strategically Speaking: Treat job interview like business presentation 09/06/13 [Last modified: Friday, September 6, 2013 6:04pm]
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