How to Beat an Internal Candidate in a Job Interview

How to Beat an Internal Candidate in a Job Interview

hey everybody it's Annie welcome back to my weekly show where I help you build a career you love today we've got a great one on how to beat an internal candidate in a job interview I've got five or six pretty good tips and these tips are not just for those individuals who are competing with internal candidates they're gonna be good for anybody they're gonna be just solid interviewing tips but but they are especially going to cover the disadvantages you have when you're going against an in-house candidate so buckle up I think there's gonna be a lot of fun if you are here with me live get in the chance say hello tell me where you're from what you need put some question marks in front of any questions that you have because the check gets pretty lively if you're watching this on the recording welcome to you too you certainly don't need to put question marks in your comments I'll be able to find them so let's let's get right into this I I've been getting a lot of emails comments on the YouTube channel and the blog in the mile walk Academy training program about these situations you are always susceptible when you are interviewing to be going up against someone internal so so let's let's go through these some of these are gonna be pretty solid some of these are gonna be pretty common-sense but but I think the whole packaging you will enjoy alright so let's start with the first point I realized that not everything that comes out of my mouth is earth-shatteringly brilliant but but sometimes these common-sense points the brilliance isn't in knowing the point it's actually in the follow-through right we all know we're supposed to eat well but but do we so this first step I want to you know state the obvious but I want to talk about it for a few minutes this I'm not even calling this step one so step zero is you gotta ask you gotta ask this sounds really obvious but it's let's let's get in the chat right away let's engage the chat right away today how many of you you know raise your hand how many of you ask if there are any internal candidates in the process do you ask if there are any it's in the process so think about this it is very natural for you to ask just like an employer asks you are you interviewing with anybody else it's it's always ok to say hey are there any other candidates in the process any internal candidates any external candidates just I'm curious to know you know what the what the candidate landscape looks like it's always okay to ask that okay now that may sound obvious and you might even ask that up front so I'm guessing some of you do a lot of you don't but even for the ones who Duke I mean can I get another show of hands if you continue to ask that throughout the process I mean we had last week or so I've had three or four people say to me auntie hey you know can you shoot a video on how to beat internal candidates you know I was humming along and I thought I had this one in the bag and all of a sudden at the end the hiring company said to me hey we decided to go with somebody internal well just because there was nobody internal when you started doesn't mean somebody came in along the way doesn't mean somebody didn't bump into somebody in the hall and say hey we're interviewing for this position so you got to stay on top of it all the way along the way and if you want a little more help on that let me see this brightness stuff is really kind of yeah if you want a little more help on that you can check out my video on what to do if there are multiple candidates in the interview process all right so that's step 0 step one step one this is kind of these next couple of points this is really kind of working to get you kind of even to Ground Zero but first thing that you got to do once you know there are candidates internal candidates in is you got to get intelligence on them which departments are they from where did they come from maybe you know are they somebody who's making a wholesale change is it is it somebody who maybe is in the junior analyst position and they're trying to just get promoted to the analyst position so what is it about the internal candidates that you can discover is there any reason mister hiring official or mister or missus screener that you wouldn't just outright hire somebody internally is there something missing is there any reason that that that might not be the case or you know is this interviewing more of a formality you know you could try to get at these things you would be amazed at how much information people are willing to share about this process you know some might say you know well the internal candidates just you know they're not ready yet they don't they don't you know we're looking for an outside opinion some are yeah you know we're going through a process it is a requirement that we interview internal candidates and external candidates you just you want to know you want to make sure that you understand that all right step two still working towards getting you to ground zero how do we neutralize home court advantage for them so how do we level the playing field what is it that you can do in order to kind of catch up with them so that you're you're somewhat neutral now now one of the things that I think really can help you level the field is being being uber uber prepared doing your homework making sure you know everything you possibly can about the company the interviewers and so on but I want to make a special call out here to the job description so you know when you get the job description you obviously should study up on it you want to know what it is what skills are required what's important what are bonuses all those other things but and and you probably will study the Job Description harder than an internal candidate would but I want you to take I want you to take not just one extra step but two extra steps I want you to not only look at the job description that is being made available in the position that you that you're potentially being hired for I want you to look at the next lowest position to make sure that you are 100% covered with the requirements of what that person or that team does and then I want you to look at the next level up so one step up if you can find it you know if you're the analyst and there's a junior analyst and senior analyst position so to speak how close to the next level are you are you ten percent there 50 percent there 80 percent there these are things that you can pounce on in the interview by talking about how you're leveled up already are almost there already or at least speak to the types of requirements that that next position would call for we'll give you an extra leg up so you want to make sure you check that out not in this job description on this job description one I shot a we did a live office hours I want to say it might have been the beginning of last year where I talked about how to ace the interview using the job description so it's a live office hours live office hours show all right next one let's talk about these I call them the sit queues I'll explain what this is but d situational interviewing questions I want you to make sure that you check the environment and you check the data before you answer any of these questions let's talk about this so for those of you that follow me you know I talked a lot about this there are only two types of interview questions there's questions about your past and there's questions about your future and questions about your future so questions like tell me about yourself walk me through your resume what did you like about your boss why did you quit your job tell me about a time when how did you organize that project what did you do then what did you do then all of that stuff is about your past generally speaking the dare I say 100% of the behavioral interviewing questions fall into that category then there's the other side of the the time spectrum which is about the future so we have this project how would you go about doing it we have this customer she's kind of a pain in the butt she's always complaining about this that and the other thing how would you interact with her what would you do how would you solve that problem how would you build that team how would you how would you how would you so anytime you get asked a question that's situational in nature where you're gonna talk about the future any of these types of questions forget what we're calling him for a second just anything about the future you want to make sure that before you discussed how you would do something the first thing that you do is you tack down all the assumptions that you're going to make and you get any additional information that you would need to know that would help you better package your response so you can safely assume that the internal candidate is probably going to have a better understanding of what the internal operating environment like who the players are what the problems are what that likely is like you need to catch up before you answer that question now I would recommend you do that anytime you answer a situational interview question but I want you to especially do it when you know you're competing against an internal candidate it's just safe practice before you open your mouth make sure you know where you're gonna go now one one thing that I did do is we shot a video on all you know how to how to talk about the future I've done this in several videos I'll make some reference to those but we've got a lot more on there now the other thing that I want me to do part three of step two is I want you to be as inclusionary as possible inclusive of everything that you speak about and your language should be team oriented so what do I mean as the interviewing process goes on and you get more familiar with the players in the process the people you're interviewing with maybe the names of some of your your teammates your team members your internal customers whoever that might be but really hang on to who you're interviewing with or write who you're interviewing with what it is they do what their goal in life is what their function is and so on so that as you get into the second interviews the third interviews and so on even though you might not be repeating an interview with somebody as you talk you know if you talk to John and Jane in the first round and you're talking to Sally and Bob in the second round you can speak to Sally and Bob in a manner that says hey you know I was talking with John and Jane the other day and they mentioned this about this upcoming project you know it really resonated with me I really like their approach because and here's my thoughts in it I would love to get your insight on that so the more that you can speak about being part of the team the more you can speak about the people that you've already interacted with hopefully there's pleasantries that you can say about them and what they shared with you and how much it pumped you up all of that stuff makes you sound and will make the interviewer feel like you're already part of the team like you're already knowledgeable like you'll walk right in the door and it'll be like having an old friend there so it's really important that you do that I actually shot a whole video the second job interview it's called second job interview it's probably like three you know three tips to nail it or ace it or three keys to get hired or something like that the video was so popular that it was stolen by two other youtubers that copied the script exactly I know I had to put some copy write strikes against them and get involved with YouTube and all the little fun stuff that goes with being a youtuber but true story I told total Side Story there but it's a good it's a good it's good video check check that out all right now let's talk about let's talk about what you are that they're not hmm so you get to this spot where you know alright you kind of caught up with them already well what are you that they aren't the glow of the newness right the the excitement of what is to come you were shiny you were new you are the future there's a level of freshness to you so that is likely your single greatest advantage if you have equal equal skill sets with an internal candidate you might have additional skill sets that the internal candidate doesn't have and that's great but your greatest asset as somebody coming in off the street or outside the company is the fact that there is that that glow of newness okay that that promise of tomorrow the art of the possible whatever you want to call it so you need to lean on this that your ideas will may not be you know all that all that new to you but they might be fresh and futuristic to the company so we talked about you know when you when you talk about those situational interview questions when you get asked those questions you want to make sure that you kind of level up get the background and data and then go but you also want to make sure that you're doing as much as pie as much as possible trying to shift the interview into the future and I actually shot a video on this as well about this one job tip Garrett was guaranteed to get you hired you should check that out because it talks about how to control the interview and get the interviewer into the future because that's much better for you to be to connect the dots about how what you've done maps to what they'll do in their environment and where you can take them and I want to drag this point home with a little here's how I want you to remember this expression you should use it often be generous with it in your interviewing process so when you are asked about your past and you say you know here's how we did it or even if you're not asked about your past when you're addressing situational interview questions the futuristic stuff here's how I did it in the past here's how we can apply that into your environment to move you forward here's how we can do this here's how we can change that here's how I would go about doing that everything is here's how here's how it'll happen for you it gets them to imagine what life will be like with you they will be very easy it would be very easy for them to see how what you have done can move them forward do not minimize the impact that that newness has especially especially for small and medium-sized companies it's good for large companies – although it's a little less powerful because they move a bit slower okay so you want to make sure you want to make sure that and then one other quick example before I move on to the next one is the true story we're in the middle of a search right now four mile walk my recruitment firm and the our operations officer and our and our client company is looking for a very senior consulting resource and whenever we take a search we always ask our clients is there anybody internally that you would want to elevate before you go out and spend all this money with us to go out and find you somebody and the woman said you know we've got some people who are you know could do the role or are already in the role but we are really looking for an outsider's perspective somebody that could come in that while they might not understand our products and services to the level that these these internal folks already do the things that are even more important to us are their methodology and building relationships with the clients having manage and implement implement solutions how they run their projects how they manage the risks how they manage the Scopes how they how they do all of these other things that that we would like them to also help teach and up-train the people that we have doing that role right now that have kind of you know come in homegrown so it's it's very very powerful you need to lean on that alright next one so I guess this is step four so tip five is the organization and the power of your questions so internal candidates they tend to be lazy when it comes to questioning why they think they know everything they think they know the environment what are they more focused on their past what they know they rarely rarely are focusing on the future because their greatest asset is that they work there your greatest asset is how you're gonna change the way they work there all right so so number number one on this is make sure that you're asking great questions we've talked a lot about how to do this I've shot a lot of videos on that about how to ask your questions the other thing you know I talked I you know a few of them to come to mine are the the top five my top five favorite questions to ask in an interview I also talked about hot I did shot a video on how to ask questions in an interview but one I want to call out and I know I get this you guys kicked this back to me a lot those of you that follow me know I love the success question if you don't know what this is I'm going to tell you so one of my absolute favorites and I shot a video on this the you know the best question to ask or the most powerful question you can ask in a job interview is if you were to give me this job or give me an offer and I was to accept it one year from now what will I have done exactly that you would consider a raging success or anybody in this role what will they have achieved what will they have built sold managed created designed optimized produced whatever it is specifically what are those success metrics and the outcomes that you want to occur specifically you ask that question during your your question asking period in the interview then I immediately want you to go in a story telling about how you would go about doing that here again you are the future you are fresh you were offering the perspective that here's how I do that exactly and they will love hearing that will be music to their ears music to theirs why won't an internal candidate ask this because they're spending a lot of time talking about who they know their comfort in the environment and all that good stuff you need to be thinking forward most of them generally generally think that their current situation is their most valuable asset just remember that just remember that keep that in mind alright that's that's five now I want to give you a bonus I want to give you a bonus this one is if you can I mean this is not applicable to all positions but if possible if possible future plans 30-day 60-day 90-day plans are really great for you to leverage in the process and I put this little thing down here and it I put for me in parentheses and this is for me this is for me to remind me to tell you that when you raise this point in an interview you need to do it in a manner as though you created this plan for you I did this for me so mister employer so you know I got to thinking you know this is a little bit later in your process right now on the screen in the first interview but as you start to get to know them you start to get a better understanding of what it is they're doing what is they're trying to do where they want to go I thought about as part of doing my homework to evaluate whether I had the right skills whether I was interested in doing this job what it was that I was gonna be called upon to do I thought it would be great if I created it kind of a 90 day plan so that I could see how I would go about this what I feel comfortable would I be able to do it well and as a matter of fact that plan told me that while I might not know everything and I'd have to adjust it based on you know information that I found and discovered once I got here but it gave me a great level of comfort to know that I would do a great job in this role so I did this for me but you know if you're interested in seeing it I would be happy to you know share it with you if that would be of interest and then you know out you whip it and then they look at it and they think this is great see you know I understand you know I'm gonna make have to make some adjustments but this is how I would tackle it and here's how I would go about it once again showing that extra level of thoughtfulness dedication to the process dedication to your investigation dedication to you making a good decision and you do those things I guarantee you you will you will have a much better advantage and win out over an internal candidate so make sure you're asking upfront and you're repeating that process so count step zero step one first thing is what I say get the Intel second thing is we want to level a little blurred things we want to level the playing field fourth thing is we want to capitalize on your shiny and newness right and then fifth thing we want to make sure that you were organized and diligent in your questions and then the bonus if you can put that plan together if it's appropriate if it's applicable I highly recommend it so I hope you'll love that I know it was a quick one but I really think that those are the areas to focus on so if you're loving it hit the little little like button I know my face is I'm looking at the screen it's a little shiny I've got two quick announcements X like three I guess three quick announcements and then we'll go to we'll go to the chat if if you're watching me on the recording I'll see you next week you


  • Andrew LaCivita says:

    Folks, I hope you enjoy this video on how to beat those internal candidates who are standing in the way of YOUR job! And, don't forget, please SUBSCRIBE to my channel for new videos weekly and Live Office Hours on Thursdays! You can also check the milewalk Academy calendar here to see when I'm live on YouTube as well as my other special live events!

  • Annihilator says:

    Andy I want to thank you for this session and actually was listening live on the day of a final live – out of town interview and posted a question which you answered. The net is I am GETTING CRUSHED by internal candidates – CRUSHED. And with that I consider myself to be a very strong leadership candidate. I also sadly fall in that damn age gap as well as being out of work gap. I am sadly in a bad place and have been giving it all I have and do have a strong network as well.

  • thefixer says:

    Fours times I have been told they went with a less qualified internal candidate because the costs are too high in bringing on a new employee.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *