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Overcoming Potential Obstacles in the Interview

Posted by Dress for Success Midwest Professional Women's Group on September 8, 2010

Do you think there are any potential obstacles that could stand between you and your next position? Here are some suggestions for handling some common obstacles:


Obviously you can’t change your age, but you can overcome a perception that you may not be up to the job. You can project yourself as energetic with a lot to give. I suggest that job candidates give some thought ahead of time to stories that illustrate that they are able to handle the stresses and strains of the job. They should also convey subtly in the interview that they plan to be in the workforce for a while.

For example, an interviewee can mention in the beginning of the interview what type of physical activity he or she did over the weekend. The interviewee can work this in during the ice breaking period which comes before the interviewer gets into the tough questions.


Job candidates need to determine beforehand what their bottom line is in terms of the compensation package. This should of course factor in current economic conditions. They should be armed with information about what they are worth and negotiate accordingly. But they should also show the interviewer that they are worth more than their salaries. In other words, they should demonstrate to the potential employer that the employer will get a return on investment that more than compensates for what they will be paying out in salary and benefits. Stories about past accomplishments can make the business case for appropriate salaries.


If you look fit, that will go a long way towards dispelling any thoughts that the interviewer may have that you will be costly (in terms of health benefits) to the company if you are hired. If you’re not fit, it’s something you should start working on since this is a part of that first good impression that you want to make.

Personality Mismatches

You should do your due diligence prior to the interview to find out what the company’s mission/values statement is and what the culture of the company is to determine if this is a good match for both parties. If it is, you need to allay any fears that the interviewer may have that you might not be a good fit by connecting the dots for the employer. Speak convincingly about the alignment you see between your values and the company’s. Talk about what you know about the company’s culture and how you see yourself fitting in.

Cheryl Palmer, M.Ed. is a career coach and a certified professional resume writer. She is the founder of Call to Career, a career coaching firm that assists people in finding their niche or calling in life.

Combining her professional status as a career coach with her love of writing, Ms. Palmer has written articles such as “Thank God It’s Monday! which was published in Message magazine and “Finding a Job That Fits You Like a Glove” which was published in Community Jobs. Both articles were well received and have given her additional visibility in her field.

Cheryl Palmer has also been a guest on a radio show entitled Insight on Coaching hosted by Tom Floyd where she discussed the needs of Generation X in the workplace and how managers from other generations can get the best out of this segment of the workforce.

In an article on HotJobs website entitled The Art of Being Assertive, Ms. Palmer was quoted as a subject matter expert on how assertiveness can help a person advance in his or her career.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Cheryl_Palmer

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