Do you have any questions to ask this Interview Panel?

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Your last impression is as important as your first.  The two critical questions you must expect are a) Tell us about yourself, and b) Do you have any question or questions for the interview panel?

I help many candidates prepare for executive panel job interviews. During my experience on the Interview panel, candidates who fail the two questions are generally ranked poorly. In these Coronavirus times, many executives are conducting virtual interviews. You must avoid the temptation to read your answers off the screen as you appear unnatural with poor delivery.

Great answers speak to the heart other than the brain. To speak to the heart, you must give an emotional answer instead of a logical one, which speaks to the brain. People make decisions based on emotion, even if many say they do not.

An emotional answer demonstrates a passion for the job better than any logical answer.

During an interview, you must be alert for an opportunity to give an emotional answer for example, why do you think you are the best candidate for this job? Or why have you applied for this job? Give an answer that takes the panel on an emotional journey with you and then make your point.

“My best friend died of cancer. I was so helpless seeing him go through too much pain, and I could not do anything. He did not have money to undergo the prescribed treatment. If the treatment was affordable, I am sure he would have made it because other patients who were in worse condition than him, are now doing fine. Of course, everyone has their day, but it pains to see someone die without the appropriate care. This job as director of the xx hospital will help us set up capabilities and research in affordable care for cancer.”  You can answer along those lines, by making it dramatic, believable, and personal. That way, panel members will keep remembering you. And that is what you need to be considered for the job.

How you end, is as important as how you start.

Prepare a great personal introduction. Towards the end of the interview, the panel will ask about your salary or pay expectations, be clear about your worth. You could say “this role for me is not about the money or the perks it comes with, it is about my passion and career aspirations. I need Ugx. 5m monthly net of taxes to live a comfortable life to enable me to win in the new role. Any pay not less than that is welcome.”

And then, the last question: Do you have any questions for this panel?

Average or weak candidates will say no and just exit. Never do that. Prepare for such a question and have a list of good questions to ask beforehand. It is your opportunity to show interest in the role and get the panel to think about you seriously. After all, great minds ask great questions.

Here are some questions to ask in case you are being interviewed for a senior role at the director or CEO level.

  1. What are the expectations of the Board on the xx role? What would the Board call work well done?
  2. Which kind of support does the Board give to the xx role holder?
  3. In these Coronavirus pandemic times; the future is difficult to predict. How does the board work with the executive to ensure sustainable value creation?

Wish you success in your carer success.

Copyright Mustapha B Mugisa, Mr. Strategy 2021. All rights reserved.


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