I’m in the midst of writing what I hope will be my second book. This one will focus on job loss and gain, and borrows "best practices" from the worlds of psychology and public relations to help jobseekers get over job loss, optimize their chances for success and beat their competition in an interview.
When it comes to job interviews, I’ve spoken to headhunters, human resources managers and our own executives to determine what works and what doesn’t. Not surprisingly, it comes down to building rapport and establishing trust. Just as is the case in the rapidly-changing communications world where word-of-mouth has supplanted traditional marketing as the most effective way to influence purchasing decisions, trust and reputation are paramount prerequisites to job interviewing success.
For older job seekers, who are a target of the new book, the general consensus is to put the "age" issue right on the table and use it as a positive rather than dancing around it as the "800-pound gorilla" in the room. By admitting that there may have been some career missteps, an older job seeker can build rapport with a younger executive in a hiring decision. Age and experience can be leveraged into a distinct competitive advantage if, and it’s a big if, the job seeker can disarm the interviewer from the get go and "admit fault" as we like to say in crisis communications 101.
In an increasingly crazy and uncertain world, an individual’s trust and reputation are what will set him or her apart from the pack and, in the case of older job seekers, help land the ideal job.