My friend Suzy was looking for a new job, and she quickly became frustrated after numerous interviews receiving no offers. In the process of finding a new job, how can we differentiate ourselves from other candidates?

During interviews, we often do our best to illustrate on our preeminent qualities. We ramble with stories of our successes in our previous positions, and we sometimes lose focus on the original question at hand.

We are absorbed in our own story.

As the interviewer, I have experienced these types of situations. I confess that I have lost my concentration multiple times after hearing these 10-minute stories.

After talking with Suzy, I had an epiphany! We spent the next several hours re-reading the Dale Carnegie best seller, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Although there were many outstanding stories, there were four principles we decided were most important when going into an interview. Suzy and I then practiced how we can differentiate ourselves in an upcoming interview.

  • Principle 5, Smile: Not a small, weak, and nervous smile. Have a confident and happy smile that shows how excited you are to be there. This will allow your future employer to know you are not nervous, you are confident!
  • Principle 6, A person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language: The importance of calling the interviewer by name should not be underestimated. Who doesn’t like to hear their own name? It makes them feel important.
  • Principle 4, Be genuinely interested in other people: This is the most important step in your interview. By taking control of the conversation and asking about the problems they have had in the past shows how dedicated you are to their organization.
  • Principle 8, Talk in terms of the other person’s interests: The last principle for your interview is to recant how you will solve those problems if you worked there. It shows confidence you can be the perfect fit for the position.

Does this approach work? After the next interview, Suzy had a job offer by the time she got home. What is the moral of the story? By attempting to sell herself to potential employers, Suzy could not get her feet off the ground. However, when she illustrated the benefits to the employer if she was hired, she got the job. When attempting to sell yourself or a product, always begin with the other person’s needs before yours. You will more often than not make the sale, even if that sale is you.

How can you put these principles into action and get hired at your dream job? Download Dale Carnegie’s Golden Book for access to all of the Human Relations principles!

Posted by Mary Kuniski

Mary Kuniski is a catalyst for business and individual change. Throughout her career, she has consistently led corporate businesses into the future, often achieving process improvement and change that others could not. Mary’s enthusiastic attitude and tenacious ability to keep moving forward is why she identifies with this quote from Dale Carnegie: “Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.” Passionate about problem resolution and committed to coaching and leading others, Mary is driven to ensure that everything she does provides lasting value. At a young age, her leadership and public speaking skills were recognized and nurtured through her ten-year participation in 4-H. She has also fostered change for businesses such as Parkinson Voice Project, where she directed the implementation of their website and online learning management system, and Overhead Door Corporation, where she created and launched a successful core data process improvement strategy. During her tenure with The Michaels Companies, Mary held five Director positions and three Vice President roles, and pioneered the company’s expansion into Quebec. Her efforts to lead the transformation of over 40,000 craft items to three languages resulted in Michaels becoming the first international retailer to acquire language certification from Quebec on the initial attempt. This meant Michaels successfully adherred to strict French-language laws. Mary has over 20 years in executive leadership in the retail industry and for 10 years led supply chain shipment improvement and savings and reduction efforts at Michaels. Mary is a Dale Carnegie graduate, certified trainer, and consultant for Dale Carnegie DFW's Executive Leadership training. She holds an MBA in Global Management from the University of Phoenix and a degree in Human Development, Clothing Studies from Pennsylvania State University.

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