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November 17, 2017
Interview Tips: Handling Objections

Anytime you propose a new idea, someone is bound to have an objection to it.  Depending on how you respond to an objection, your idea might suffer a crippling blow or actually strengthen the persuasive power of your proposal.


The best way to handle an objection is to anticipate and pre-handle it before it ever comes up.  If that isn’t possible, then the best way to deal with an objection is to question it and then turn the objection into the very reason why your idea should be accepted.


Often, people initially react to new ideas impulsively and defensively.  They may well need help to understand and realize that a new idea is better than a previously held notion they’ve had and that their self-interest is better served by adopting the new idea.


Suppose you’re a 40+ year old job hunter and you believe that your age might cause you to be eliminated from consideration.  First, you should  communicate directly to the hiring authority.  I advise sending a letter directly to her or him.  In it, you should say something like:  “I’m a daily runner/jogger - so I have a high energy level - and I can get more things done every day.”


Now, let’s say that you didn’t say that, but the notion somehow came up in an interview - though it won’t be stated bluntly.  Maybe the interviewer says:  “this job is a non-stop whirlwind”.  You reply:  “great.  That’s one of the main reasons why you should hire me - because I have a high energy level and the stamina to burn the midnight oil when it’s necessary in order to get the job done”.

Suppose you have five or more years experience in a position like the one you are applying for.  In a letter to the hiring authority, you should anticipate a concern that you might have “too much” experience in the position.  A smart way to pre-handle that particular issue is to simply say that because of your experience, you can get things done faster.


If you forget or neglect to pre-handle any specific objection that comes up in an interview, you should say:  “Not enough experience?  That’s actually why you should hire me! (pause very briefly) Because I’ll do the job exactly the way you want it done.  You won’t have to worry that I’ll assume that you want me to do things the same way we did them at my previous company.  You know what works best here, and that’s what I’ll do.


In summary, handling objections to your qualifications should begin by correctly identifying the most likely concerns that the hiring authority is likely to have and then pre-handling them in a letter that you should send directly to her or him before you even send your resume.  


Once you are in an interview, help the interviewer to grasp that any concerns about you should actually be reasons why they should hire you.

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Tom Kellum is a job hunting consultant, helping people's dreams come true since 1987. He specializes in providing a personal job-landing service based on proven marketing strategies and methods. For more information, email him at careerkeysman@gmail.com.
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