Never Forget This When You Meet Someone

Why You're Always on a Job Interview

Do you remember your last job interview? You dressed to impress. Your teeth had never been whiter and you smiled so much your cheeks hurt. You read up on every question they could ask and memorized thoughtful responses. You listened for the question behind the question. You were warm, charming, and funny.

You were so amazing your potential employer would have been crazy not to hire you!

Hopefully it wasn’t all an act and the “you” that you presented is who you are on your best day.

Having conducted quite a few interviews myself it’s hard to know who the real candidate is. It’s much like dating where each person is accentuating the positives and minimizing the negatives.

The challenge is to find out if who the candidate is presenting themselves as will be who you will really get after you hire them. I’m always amazed at the rare occasion when a potential applicant doesn’t even seem to try. It makes my job a lot easier.

Why would they waste their time? I guess it’s possible they don’t realize how they come across in an interview.

Here is the irony about job interviews and dating…if you don’t put your best foot forward you’ll never get to the second one.

Which leads me to my main point…

Any time you meet new people it’s an interview for a potential break through.

It’s easy to think your interviews stop once you land a job or get married. They don’t, interviews continue for the rest of your life.

Every person you meet has the ability or know people that have the ability to help move your dream forward in some area.

Think about that. The person you are about to meet for the first time could introduce you to your future spouse. They could introduce you to your biggest client. They could help your child get into their dream school. They could move you to the front of the line. They know someone who is hiring for your dream job.

Anything you dream about or want could come true based on the next time you are introduced to someone. Knowing that you are just one introduction away from a significant breakthrough how would you carry yourself in that introduction?

I would hope you would put your best foot forward and do all of the things you would do in a job interview or on a first date. Since you are reading this I’m sure you are the type of person who would.

Because you are, you know exactly what I’m talking about. You have a beautiful niece and at first you thought about introducing her to this young man, but then you changed your mind.

Or your friend is hiring and asked you for referrals, but after lunch with someone you thought had potential you changed your mind about passing on their name.

Sharp leaders are always on the lookout for other leaders. They have positions for current and future initiatives that require people with your skills. They’ve also enlisted the help of their network in recruiting top talent.

Don’t think because you aren’t meeting with a top leader that it doesn’t matter how you present yourself, this person may be part of the leader’s network. Besides, the true test of character is how you treat people who can do nothing for you. My point is you never know who has the keys to unlock your next opportunity so always put your best foot forward.

I’ve seen this happen in my own life. People I had no idea who they were unlocked doors for me that I never could have. I’ve known of opportunities that I’ve shared or didn’t share because of my first impression.

Recently, my wife and I both knew of an opportunity and we were excited to meet someone we secretly hoped would be a fit. After our meeting, we knew we couldn’t pass their name on because there just didn’t seem to be any hunger or drive. We both discussed how this person’s life would have changed for the better if they just knew what was hanging in the balance.

I’m not saying they aren’t a great person, I’m just saying we didn’t see what we were looking for. In some ways, I guess it’s unfair to be judged solely on one meeting (granted it was several hours), but that’s my point…you often only get one interview or one date to make an impression so make it count. You never know what might be hanging in the balance.

We sat our teenage daughter down and taught her this principle.

Any time you meet new people it’s an interview for a potential break through.

High capacity people and sharp leaders are always looking for great people. They can help you with an internship, a dream job, a referral, capital, or introduce you to their nephew or niece. Even if they don’t know of a potential opportunity for you they will file your name away for the future.

Interviews never end once you land a job or get married. Always be prepared to show the world the best version of yourself. You are your best representative.