Happy Interview Technique: Humility

News flash!! You are not the greatest thing since sliced bread. Big deal, you took a NASM practice test. Yawn… you completed a paramedic practice test, paramedic training and are now certified. ZZZZZZZZ… you attended this conference and that conference. Get over yourself, so did every other candidate. Also, do not forget that the interviewer in front of you did all the same things often times before you were born, so do not bother trying to impress them with all your “experience”. The things listed above are all good, and yes, the interviewer should know about those things. However, the interviewer is looking for a much more important character trait during your interview. The trait the panel is looking for is humility.

The dictionary defines humility as, Lacking Pretense; not believing you are superior to others; meekness; modest; not boastful. I put it another way. You need to get your QC. That is, your quiet confidence. Quiet Confidence means that you are competent but not arrogant.  Arrogance is an attitude and employers realize that attitudes are very hard to change once they are set. It is just easier to not hire someone with the wrong attitude vs. hiring them and trying to change them. During your interview you will have many chances to display this character trait. The questions listed below are common questions you will get that will test your ability to be humble:

  • What have you done to prepare for this position?
  • What makes you better than the rest of the candidates?
  • List some of your strengths.
  • List some of your weaknesses.
  • How do you deal with conflict?
  • What leadership positions have you held?
  • How do you define customer service?
  • What does diversity mean to you?

In a later post we will discuss strategies to tackle the above questions with Quiet Confidence. The way you are perceived by the interviewer is everything. All that matters is what the interviewer perceives. Whether it’s true or not, perception is reality. Humility is all about you. If you are not humble now, I suggest you start today and change your attitude. Here are three rules that I live by that help to keep me humble. First, I do not think more highly of myself than I ought to. Second, I refuse to be offended.  Lastly, treat others like you want to be treated. If you do those three things you are on your way to developing humility.  A religious quote states, “Before his downfall a man’s heart is proud, but humility comes before honor.” Your honor is landing that job. Before you walk into that interview, get your attitude in check, and good things will come your way.