You’re in an interview, and everything is going great. Your answers are concise and thorough, and you’re feeling confident. Then, they ask “So, why should we hire you?” and you freeze up. We all know this question is coming, yet it often throws people off.
That’s because answering this question is a balancing act; you don’t want to come off as conceited, but you don’t want to downplay yourself too much and sound insecure. This question is both a test to see if you know what skills are applicable for the position and also a prompt for you to sell yourself.
Without a quick and clear response, you may come off less confident than you would like to during your job interview. Here are two key steps to answering this question well:
1. Understand the job
The job description is a great place to start. There is likely a section that lists required or desired skills, and these are the skills you’ll want to highlight throughout your interview. You will want to frame your response in terms of the employers’ needs, and how you can deliver. Why should they hire you? Because you know what they’re looking for, and you have the experience and the skills to do the job right.
2. Know what you can bring to the table
The “why should we hire you” question isn’t meant to stump you. It’s your opportunity to communicate why you’re the best person for the job. A great way to form your response is to summarize your greatest relevant attributes, which you should have already touched on earlier in the interview. You’ll want to emphasize the qualities that you want the interviewer to remember most about you. If you don’t have much direct experience, highlight your transferable skills – those skills you already possess that could be easily applied to the role – in addition to your education and training.
The “why should we hire you” question will trip up some candidates, but with a little preparation, you can turn it into your strongest interview moment. Take the time to understand the responsibilities and requirements of the job, and consider the opportunities for you to add value. Focus on what you can bring to the company, and there’s no doubt that you’ll stand out your interviewer’s mind as one of the best candidates for the job.