SPEAKER’S CORNER: Jennifer Smith – Use a Leadership Mindset to Get Hired

By Frances Chaves

In her October 2 presentation to PSGCNJ, Certified Leadership Coach Jennifer Smith described her techniques for countering negative self-talk and showing up as the ideal candidate. The following summarizes her PowerPoint presentation:

“Change your thoughts and you can change the world.” (Earl Nightingale)

 Your thoughts affect your emotions and then your actions:

  • Concerns about a job’s salary level cause negative emotions like frustration and apprehension which lead you to delay submitting an application. Then, in the interview, you may focus on salary questions rather than presenting yourself as the best candidate.
  • Feeling that a job is at a lower level than your previous one leads to feeling undervalued and disheartened. This may result in your showing a lack of interest during the pre-screen and interview process.
  • Concern that the employer won’t want you because you are overqualified leads to feeling nervous, anxious and insecure. This leads candidates to downplay their experience and answer interview questions in a long-winded way.
  • Worries over how many other candidates are interviewing for the job lead to nervousness, anxiety and pessimism, leading to hesitancy throughout the interview process.

Your energy to find work is affected by GAILS:

  • Gremlins (your inner critic) tell you there are no jobs available.
  • Assumptions (beliefs that because something happened in the past, it will happen again) tell you “I did not receive an offer for the last opportunity so I won’t receive one from this company.”
  • Interpretation (the personalization of a generalization) causes you to think that with the limited number of jobs available, I will never find a job.
  • Limiting beliefs lead to generalization: I thought I would find a job and now I am not certain someone will hire me.

Change your energy from catabolic to anabolic:

There are jobs out there: 100,188 on LinkedIn alone.Getting one requires energy.Catabolic means “the metabolic breakdown of complex molecules into simpler ones, often resulting in a release of energy.” Anabolic means “A metabolic process in which complex molecules are synthesized from simpler ones with the storage of energy.” In your job search, you need to HIGH energy, not LOW energy.

Low energy catabolic applicants:

  • Wait to the last minute to send cover letters, prepare for interviews, etc.
  • Rarely seek feedback from others about effectiveness
  • During interviews, share information about how others did things wrong
  • Disconnect emotionally
  • See only problems

High energy anabolic applicants:

  • During the interview, share (detailed) information about skills and value to organization
  • Utilize 360 and individual feedback
  • Are accountable for their actions
  • Utilize emotional intelligence
  • See opportunities

Fight negative thoughts during an interview:

1)      Red Light – Stop and catch yourself as you realize the (negative) type of thought that you are having.

2)      Yellow Light – Ask yourself: How true is this thought? What caused me to have this thought now?

3)      Green Light – Release any negative emotions and choose to think positively.

Get unstuck:

  • Identify GAILS
  • Shift thoughts to be anabolic
  • Explore a wider range of emotional thoughts
  • See each interview as an opportunity

Prepare for a successful phone Interview:

  •  Be quiet for at least five minutes before the call
  • Take a few deep breaths to quiet the mind
  • Visualize how you want the call to go
  • Have positive statements in front of you

Keys to interview success:

“It’s not what you say that matters, but why you say it.” (Bruce D. Shneider, Energy Leadership)

Thinking you “have to” interview is a position of no power; “choosing to” interview gives you the greatest power to produce a positive effect. Cultivate the following:

  •  Self-awareness: Aware of oneself, including traits, feelings and behaviors.
  • Emotional control: Control of oneself and one’s conduct and behavior when responding to questions.
  • Social awareness: Aware of interviewers as well as those we come in contact with daily.
  • Relationship Effectiveness: Connection with interviewers that helps being seen as the ideal candidate.

Answer the tough questions:

Jennifer recommends being responsive rather than reactive. Reactive behavior indicates behavior out of control rather than responsive behavior which reflects behavior in balance.

Results of raising your overall consciousness and energetic level: 

  • Feel a greater sense of purpose
  • Resonate at a higher level of energy which will help you get more done in less time and, also, attract success to you
  • Be able to respond more effectively to interview questions
  • Reduce stress
  • Increase your engagement
  • Have access to your personal genius
  • Improve all other aspects of your life
  • Inspire and motivate those around you

Jennifer Smith, Certified Leadership Coach & Facilitator and founder of Growth Potential Consulting, engages leaders as coaching clients because they desire to increase their effectiveness and are not looking to their organization to facilitate their development. Also, she partners with companies who are looking to develop leaders as a way of increasing engagement and retaining talent which drives towards greater business results. She can be reached at jennifer@growthpotentialcons.com or at 732-207-7922. 

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