How to Find a Perfect Fit

Priscilla (not her real name) said she’d been getting interviews but someone else always got the job offer.  She came to me as a client from an organization’s website that I coach for.  She said she needed help with interview skills.

In our initial appointment I asked her if she ever asked the hiring manager what the hired candidate had in his/her background that was missing from hers.  She had never asked and was doubtful they would tell her.

It is worth a try asking because sometimes you find the other candidate emphasized a skill that you didn’t think was that important but that you also have.  Of course, there are times when the hiring manager is not helpful at all.

That is when having a friend at the company is helpful.  That person may be in a position to find out what really went on.  Priscilla knew no one in the company.

Without feedback from the hiring manager we could practice interviewing skills and we did but it is hard to know where to focus.  She had good answers for all the usual interview questions.  She knew what about her background she wanted to emphasize.  What did Priscilla lack?

Priscilla had another interview several days after our coaching session.  She wrote me a note afterward that it went well but she’d wait until she knew what happened before our next session.  She said if she didn’t get the job she’d like more help interviewing but if she did get the job then she’d need help networking.

For me this was a red flag.  She saw the importance of networking within her new company but she didn’t see that meeting other people now might help her to get another job.  Had she had a robust network she might have known people from each company she interviewed with.  You can learn a lot about your interview skills from friends who speak to the interviewer before and after the interview and are willing to be honest with you.

I had an experience myself when I was looking for a job that made me realize the value of my network.  I thought I had interviewed well for a job but my friend in the organization told me the interviewer got the impression I wasn’t interested in the job.  I learned that I needed to be more demonstrative in my enthusiasm and my ordinary poker face didn’t work for me here.

The time to start networking is now. Networking is important throughout your career.  Hiring managers prefer to hire a known quantity.  A recommendation or inquiry from a current employee can get your resume to the top of the pile.

Lots of jobs go unadvertised and are known only through the team with the opening.  Sometimes when you are networking the person you meet may start to think about how he/she might use your skills.  The time to begin networking is before you need a job.  It is never too late to begin however.

The bonus is that with networking you are more likely to find a job where you will be happy at work.

A coaching offer

Are you managing your job search so that you will find the perfect fit for you?  If you’d like to pin point some areas for improvement for your job search, I’d be happy to help you.  Just call me at 781-598-0388 or email me at


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