What makes you stand out in an interview?

Stephen O'Brien 03.04.2018

I once read an article where Stephen McIntyre, the former EMEA Head of Sales and Operations at Twitter, outlines what makes an excellent candidate. Here's the top attributes he looks for:

1. Attitude

“Above all, it is attitude that distinguishes the best candidates at interview and indeed the highest-performing employees at work.”
 
Of course you are going to need the right skills and experience to land the job but what separates the good candidates from the excellent candidates is attitude. Candidates with the right attitude will embrace change and keep a positive frame of mind even when under pressure. 

2. Self-awareness

“People with high self-awareness know what they’re good at, what they’re bad at, and they know what motivates them.”
 
Candidates with good self-awareness know what direction they want to steer their career in and are focused on doing this. This is not always possible at the start of your career but excellent candidates show this trait at an early stage.
 
More:

3. Academic background isn't everything

“It matters less what you study and much more how you build on it afterwards...Make ambitious goals for yourself by all means but be flexible and try to enjoy the journey wherever it takes you.”
 
Of course it's important to do your best academically, however when you enter the workforce there is less focus on your academic results and much more focus on what achievements and tangilbe results you can talk about in your interviews. If you are a graduate, speaking about objectives that you reached even in any part-time work that you have done will add value to your interview process.
Stephen O'Brien's picture
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sobrien@morganmckinley.ie

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