In a job interview, it’s important to create a great first impression.
You know this already.
What you may not know, is it’s just as important to leave a great last impression.
We tend to get so caught up in being a “right fit” with our skills, our qualifications and our experience, we forget the most important thing the hiring manager is looking for in a candidate.
How much they want this job?
Hiring managers hate losing staff. Because not only will they be losing a good employee, they have to go through the painful process of hiring all over again.
They would rather hire someone who checks all the boxes and shows more enthusiasm for the job, rather than a qualified rock-star who seems less excited to take on this role.
So what should be the final question you ask to show them how much you want this job?
After you’ve asked your preliminary questions about the role itself, team culture etc. the final question should explicitly state your excitement.
Don’t leave it to chance. Don’t leave it to body language. Just come right out and say it.
Some career experts have suggested to make the bold move by asking for the job with a “Did I get the job?”.
Personally I would not recommend this, because it may put the hiring manager in an awkward position. When a candidate asked me this question, I didn’t feel good about it. The most likely answer you’re going to get is “We have to interview other candidates and we will let you know.” Not helpful.
You’re better off stating your excitement asking them what happens next in the hiring process.
Here are some options:
Good (High level and to the point)
“I was already excited about this opportunity before the interview, and now that we’ve spoken I feel even more confident I’d be a right fit for your team. What are the next steps in your hiring process?”
Better (Referencing something specific discussed in the interview)
“I’d love the chance to help you and your team with [the project/goal that was discussed]. What are the next steps in your hiring process?”
Best (Reference something specific and how it connects to your experience/skills)
“I’d love the chance to help you and your team with [the project/goal that was discussed]. With my experience/skills in [your strengths], I’m confident we can get [the result of the project/goal]. What are the next steps in your hiring process?”
If the hiring manager has already explained the hiring process, instead of asking “What are the next steps…” you can ask “When do you think you will be able to reach a decision?”
Mix it up, experiment, and see what works for you. I’m sure you get the idea.