Discussing Job History in a Relevant Manner

Staying Composed When Answering Difficult Questions 

Regardless of what difficult interviewing question you’re asked, let’s touch upon the foundational interviewing strategies.

    • Speak slowly and thoughtfully.
    • Learn to put a positive spin on a negative or less relevant past job.
    • When you listen with empathy and respect, people pay you back in spades.
    • Do not feel that you have to divulge negative aspects of yourself or your past.
    • Keep past job experience relevant. The more you discuss irrelevant work history the less likely you will be seen as a good job applicant.
    • Focus on how you can help that employer solve their immediate needs.
    • Speak in terms of what is important to that particular hiring manager.
    • Think about what the other side wants when filling their open job.

Discussing Job History is Difficult  

  • Again, the trick is to always be relevant.  Nothing else matters except relevancy.
  • The human brain (employers included) looks for reasons as to why you can’t do the job more than reasons of why you could.
      • For instance, if you are going for a digital marketing position, do not discuss sales or any other unrelated aspect.
      • Discussing irrelevant facets won’t make you look well-rounded or impressive.
      • You’ll most likely be perceived as having a lack of expertise.

Phrase Past Job History With Relevant, Engaging Content

  • Action verbs are interesting when reading. They are just as powerful in speech…
  • “I did” is not interesting vs. “I tasked myself with the objective of _______”

When Asked, “Tell Me What You Did at Your Past Job?”

  • Again, the trick is to always be relevant.  Nothing else matters except relevancy.
  • The human brain (employers included) looks for reasons why you can’t do the job more than reasons why you could.
      • For instance, if you are going for a digital marketing position, do not discuss sales or any other unrelated aspect
      • Discussing irrelevant facets won’t impress by making you look well-rounded,
      • You’ll most likely be perceived as having a lack of expertise.

Structuring Past Job Explanations

1. Regardless of how relevant or irrelevant, start with a brief overview 2 to 3 sentence overview.

    • For instance, Alphabet Google’s holding company describes itself as:
    • “An American multinational technology conglomerate holding company headquartered in Mountain View, California.  Alphabet is the world’s third-largest technology company by revenue and one of the world’s most valuable companies.”

2. Then, explain what you were tasked to do.

    • You worked in the Cloud segment of the businesses, making sure that enterprise clients understood the value that your solution brought as opposed to AWS or Azure.

3. What the headwinds were

    • When I started, “we saw a competitive decline in client retention and interest”

4. What the results were

    • My team ended up increasing market share while maintaining healthy margins

5. What philosophies did you use in order to achieve those results