During most interviews, hiring managers or recruiters are holding your resume and know full well what it says. Yet they still ask you questions about your career. So how should you respond when you know the answers are right there on your resume?
- An interviewer’s question about your career is your opportunity to tell a story that directly relates to the company where you are interviewing and to the job position. You can flesh out an accomplishment on your resume or chose a story with a closer fit.
- You can explain any problems that the interviewer sees on your resume. “I moved from company XYZ after a year because company ABC offered me the opportunity to lead a team.” “I took a five-month break to help settle my parents into an assisted living unit near me.”
- Your factual responses to the interviewer’s questions show that your resume is an accurate reflection of your career to date. Make sure you read the resume thoroughly before each interview so that you are clear about its overall message and any details that you might want to emphasize.
An interviewer’s questions can also help you decide whether the job opportunity is a good fit for you. It may not be a good fit if:
- The interviewer does not understand the basic terms you are using. For example, the interviewer is unclear exactly what it is you do even after reading your resume and hearing you explain yourself as clearly and concisely as possible. There may be an insurmountable communication gap.
- The interviewer has a negative reaction to what you consider positive parts of your resume; for example, volunteering in a specific organization or taking time off to raise a child. There may be an insurmountable values gap.
- The interviewer has not read your resume and cannot find it. The company may only be interested in hiring any warm body and may be too disorganized for you.
Your resume is a valuable resource. It helps you prepare a coherent, clear, factual description of your career; and it helps you to decide if the company where you are applying appreciates your accomplishments and value. Let Robin’s Resumes® make sure it is the finest resource you can bring to an interview.