interview sabrinaOne of the reasons the job search process is so difficult for many is that it forces the individual to talk about themselves. They must be able to highlight their accomplishments and abilities through every step of the process. For many, knowing where to draw the line between explaining skill sets to bragging can be difficult.

In an interview setting this can be especially difficult. Candidates want to express to the interviewer that they possess the skills necessary to do the job, but do not want to come across as arrogant. For the interviewer, a candidate who does across as arrogant can be difficult to believe.

Candidates should be enthusiastic about what they have achieved and what they bring to a potential employer.  In an interview, more than any other place in life, it is acceptable to promote abilities. The line between charisma and arrogance is fine, but candidates can walk it by following a few simple rules.

Back it Up:

Any skill set, achievement or ability a candidate promotes that can be supported with an example will be very effective. Saying, “I am always the most analytical person on the team” could come across as arrogant. Making that statement and backing it up with evidence such as awards or accomplishments would not.

Stories and examples are a candidate’s life line in an interview. The more an interviewee can support what they are saying, the better.

Keep it Relevant:

Going on about skill sets that do not correlate to the open positions is not necessary and could cross the line into arrogance. Candidates should only discuss abilities that mean something to the role. It is acceptable to talk about abilities that may matter in the future, but going on about anything not relevant to the role or company can be viewed negatively.

Answer the Question:

Few things frustrate an interviewer more than when a candidate talks for fifteen minutes and never answers the question. Going on about how great you are, but never answering the question definitely leans towards arrogance. It’s fine to elaborate and provide a thorough explanation, just make sure it is actually answering the question.

In the interview, more than anywhere else in life, talking about you is acceptable. It is ok for candidates to share stories that demonstrate how good they are at their job. Following the guidelines above will ensure that the proper amount of charisma is shared and doesn’t cross the line into arrogance.

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