Closing the Deal – Part 3

So you have made a great first impression and are comfortable with the interviewer. It’s time to really shine with your knowledge of the organization and show what you have to offer!

The questions that the candidate asks reflect interest in the organization and demonstrate strengths. Some excellent questions that will draw out some great information are:

  • Ask about the company and the interviewer’s background.
  • What is the  #1 priority in this position?  Then expand on that point:  Explain how your experience and background fits what the company is looking for.
  • What are the first year’s goals in this position? Follow up with…What obstacles do you see that could stop you from meeting these goals?  Expand on your background to support how you have overcome similar obstacles.
  • With whom will I be interfacing?  How will my success be measured? How did the last person do in this position? Why is the position vacant? How is the work being done now?
  • Do I have the qualifications that you are looking for? If “YES” – Respond, “Let’s move to the next step. If “NOT SURE YET” – Say, “I must not have covered something.” “What questions do you need answered?” If “NO” – Ask why and address concerns up front. Maybe you can alleviate the concerns and change no to yes.

A lot of your prepared questions will be answered throughout the interview process. Be sure that you show good listening skills and not re-ask questions that have been discussed earlier, unless you are requesting clarification.

Share Success Stories! Give examples of experiences where you have had a problem.  Explain how you dealt with it and the solution you created to fix it.

Talking $$$ – When the conversation gets to this point a good response is “as much as the position is worth”.  “I am willing to look at anything which is competitive with my experience and my background” or something along those lines.  DO NOT give a $ figure too early on in the interviewing process (the 3rd or 4th is the norm).  Bringing this up any earlier may rule you out too soon.


The Must Ask Question “Do you have any questions or concerns about my background that I can clarify for you while I’m here?”  This is a great closing question because it opens the door for the interviewer to be honest with you about his/her feelings.  If concerns do exist, this is a great opportunity to overcome them.  You have one final chance to dispel the concerns, sell your strengths, and end the interview on a positive note.

Do you want the job?If you are interested in the position you must convey this BEFORE you walk out the door.  Let the interviewer KNOW that you are interested and that you would like to go to the next step.  ASK, “What is the next step?”

After the Interview

When appropriate, send thank you cards or emails no later than 24 hours after the interview.  Send one to each of those with whom you met. Asking for business cards during the interview is helpful.

If you are working with a Recruiter, please call your recruiter right away so a prompt response is available when the client is ready to make the offer!

Contributed by: – Rick Forrest, Senior Technical Recruiter