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How To Sell Yourself In An Interview

How To Sell Yourself In An Interview

Stop trying to 'sell' yourself during an interview.


I think the phrase 'sell yourself' needs to be removed from your vocabulary. The phrase brings up so many negative feelings. You don't want to be a sleazy sales person who says anything to get the sale. We've all experienced being on the receiving end of being sold to in that way. So you're brain is drawing a connection between selling yourself in an interview and being like those sales people. That phrase "sell yourself" is making the connection that selling is pushy, inauthentic and you would have to lie or say anything to get a leadership role.


Good news! You don't have to feel like that. You don't have to be like that. Leave being salesy to other people. You're going to show up in your power as yourself. Here's how.



Know your processes aka 'sell yourself'


This one strategy will really start to shift your energy and how you show up in an interview.


Imagine sitting in the interview room, speaking confidently about things that you've done to a group of people interested to hear it. That's what will happen if you take the time to write your leadership stories down. But wait, you did! They're in your application.


Take your application stories and really break down what you did and how you did them so that you are crystal clear about everything that happened. By doing this, you'll now know what you did to get the impact you had.


Reflect back on how you:

  • got staff on board.
  • communicated to people during the story.
  • how you created a team.


Ensure that the things you did are placed in an order that is easy to follow for someone listening to the story for the first time. It may not have happened in that order in real life but if you tell the story with parts missing, you'll lose your captive audience. Bring them on the journey as you tell the story.


The great thing about this process is that you'll be so clear about what you are saying. You will come across more confident than someone who is waffling about a project they've done and telling the panel their actions  but out of order.


By being succinct and orderly about what you did, it becomes clear to the panel that you could repeat this in their school. You have demonstrated that you created a plan, did the work and got an outcome. You were a leader.



By articulating yourself clearly, you'll be standing in your power (technically sitting in your power) and know you've got skills in leadership. No selling. No sleaziness. Just you, being you. How powerful is that?



Project into the role aka 'sell yourself'


Some people miss the opportunity to say these magic words, "As (role you're applying for) at (school name), I will (now show you my strengths)." This statement is showing the panel that you're already on board and thinking about being a leader in their school.


Whilst projecting into the role Projecting Into A Leadership Role, you can also articulate your transferable skills. For many people, this promotion is also an increase in responsibility of more staff. Being clear that you have had success with working with (x) staff and will use your processes and lessons to lead (y) staff is a challenge you're ready for.


This can be uncomfortable for some people because it starts to edge a toe into the 'sleazy selling' side of things. Here's the reframe though. You're solving a problem they have. They need someone on their team and they are looking for that person. You're on that short list! Be their solution.


If you say it, they will know. Draw the connection for the panel. Don't let there be anything unspoken about your commitment to applying for and successfully winning this position. The panel has lots of things their listening for in an interview so be obvious. Keep nothing in your back pocket. Lay it on the table.


Also, energetically, you're telling the universe that you're ready for more impact. You're ready for me responsibility. You're ready to go next level in your career so say the words, "As a member of (school)...". That alone is powerful.


Be authentic and human aka 'sell yourself'


During an interview, you'll be putting the best version of your leadership self front and centre. The panel may ask a question that will allow you to talk about the not so polished version of you. This could include a question about your biggest leadership lesson or something that you still need to work on.


Because you're prepared for interviews, I know, you'll have spent time writing out a story that fits this scenario...right? I'm bringing this up because it may happen and if you're not prepared with an answer, it can be a place where your 'selling' self may show up.


You can fall into the trap of going to the extremes. From "I did this so badly" to "No I've never made a mistake". Taken by surprise, you can be too honest about your flaws and give away your power because of one 'mistake' or feel the need to not show any flaws in case of judgement.


I'm advocating for you to be authentic and human but not from a place of fear. Do some reflection. Recall a time when you really did learn how NOT to do something. Get clear on how this lesson came to be and what you learnt from it. This is a wonderful way of showing that you've already learnt this valuable lesson about leading people, so it won't happen again. How will this lesson stay with you as you develop further as a leader? So juicy!


So in conclusion

  1. Know what you've done
  2. Project into the role
  3. Be authentic and human


I help leaders prepare for interview through strategy, structure and mindset support. Reach out and book in a free 30 minute call to discuss what this will look like for you OR get started straight away.