Finally! How To Answer The Typical Interview Question: “Why Should I Hire You?”

LANDON LONG 5 Comments;

typical interview

Scene 1 (Setting is a typical interview):

Hiring Manager: “Why should I hire you?”

You: “Why shouldn’t you hire me? Pssh… cause I’m better than all the other idiots out there…duh!”

Ok.. maybe you shouldn’t use that kind of approach on your next job interview… but really lets take a closer look at this typical interview question and see what’s REALLY going on behind the curtain… Have you ever asked yourself why employers ask this typical interview question in the first place? Could it be that that they’re really just trying to get under your skin? To see if you’ll crack? Or do you think its to see what you’d come up with on the spot? See how you do under pressure?

You know what? It could be all of the above in my opinion.  It’s obviously a typical interview question, but how you answer it can really say a lot about you.  Sometimes it’s what you don’t say that stands out.

But if there’s one key takeaway you should learn from this post, if nothing else, it would be no matter what your answer is to this typical interview question, it should ALWAYS be in employer’s best interest…. In other words, “WHAT’S IN IT FOR THEM”… And it really helps when you actually put some forethought in this (since it is a typical interview question you’ll be asked time and time again) ahead of time instead of spouting out a bunch of “overdone” responses like, “I’m a hard worker, I’m good with people, I’ll do a good job for you…blah, blah, blah”

You think this is the first time they’ve heard anyone say that before? Yeah right! You’re probably the 1034th person to walk in through that door with the EXACT same rehashed bologna and employers can see right through it! Don’t settle for the lazy way out… Put some effort into it… some passion… REALLY.

Here’s a clue for what I would do on a typical interview…

[WARNING: This approach is definitely not for everyone. But with enough practice, I can guarantee you one thing: They’ll remember you long after the interview is over and it will be remembered as more than just a typical interview!]

Step 1: Study their job posting and figure out exactly what they want

Step 2: Cater your answer to the “Why should I hire you?” question to match every single one of the requirements on the job posting.

For example:

Let’s say a job posting is for an administrative position and says, “Must be organized and be able to multi-task.

Ok… so what could you say as a response to “Why should I hire you?

How about… “You should hire me because I’ve proven time and time again for my previous employers that I have an exceptional ability to keep my projects organized and efficient. And as I’ve mentioned in my resume, I was able to keep our office and project files organized while simultaneously being able to help my direct supervisor establish a filing system, distribute press kits, , , etc (you get the idea). So if you’re still looking to hire someone who can be exceptional at multi-tasking while being able to keep your office organized… you just need to ask yourself one question… and that is: “Would hiring anyone else OTHER THAN me be a good business decision? [pause for effect]

Like I said, this approach might be a bit more “aggressive” to a typical interview answer for most people out there who are currently stuck in their “I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing even though it’s not working” mentality… but if you don’t want to continue to be broke and unemployed… you just gotta ask yourself one thing…

How bad do YOU want this job?

Hope this entry helps. Now do me a favor and leave me a comment below and let me know your thoughts.

Happy hunting!  And have fun creating a unique, tailored answer to this typical interview inquiry!

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What do you think
  1. rodjoh

    You are right on this. I always figured this question was simply meant to test your diplomacy in semi-awkward situations.

    To tell you the truth not only have I personally answered the question many times, I had to participate in a hiring process once, and had to ask the question to other people. You’d think that if people really want a job or a higher position they’d be careful with their choice of words, but amazingly many people are not.

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  2. admin

    I know what you mean. Too often people fall under the IMPULSE of “winging it” instead of using strategic answers that could give them a fighting shot at landing the job offer, or at a minimum leave the hiring manager with an impression that STICKS long after the interview…

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  3. solitaire

    Every time I’ve ever tried this, if I get any feed back at all, it is that I am coming across as arrogant. I present the information in a matter of fact way, but if I close with the “why would you hire anyone but me? gambit, I’m lucky if they open the door before shoving me through it.

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  4. Amanda

    I went back to school for anthropology/archaeology a few years ago, and that has been a good way to answer this question in almost any interview — having the training to understand where a person is coming from, be they employer, employee, or customer (although I’m always tempted to tell them what a kick ass Indiana Jones type I am, all swashbuckling and mad Swiss Army knife-like adaptability).

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  5. Carol

    Absolutely fantastic your article. I think your approach is very good, in my opinion is not aggressive it just shows how confident you are with your skills and if you can do the job.

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