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How to Interview for Your First Management Position, Part 2 of 2

by THEA kelley | August 25, 2022

In “How to Interview for Your First Management Position, Part 1,” I showed that you may have more management experience and skills than you think. I also offered tips for communicating those skills when you answer common interview questions.

In this post I’ll offer tips for how to “walk the talk” as a management candidate during the interview process, to sound and look like the strong managerial candidate you really are.

Demonstrate your management skills through your behavior in the interview process.

In other words, “walk the talk.” A good manager:

These are only a few examples of effective managerial qualities and skills. Are there others you want to demonstrate? Prepare to live out those qualities during every phase of the interview process, from the first phone screening through accepting and negotiating the offer.

Speak the language of management.

As an aspiring manager, you may find it difficult to describe your leadership skills. Try this: Do internet searches on “leadership skills,” “leadership styles,” “management skills” and “management styles.” As you read the articles you find, what do you see that describes you? What stories come to mind? Take notes.

If you’ve ever taken a leadership training, reviewing the handouts or recordings may also help you understand and talk about your experience, skills and style. If you haven’t taken such trainings, look for opportunities to do so.

Take a leadership assessment online and see what you can learn about yourself. Two of the most commonly used are DISC and MBTI. But do be aware that your interviewers may not be familiar with the assessments you’ve taken, or may be skeptical about them. Don’t come off like a know-it-all.

Look like a manager.

In my post, “How to Ace a Video Interview” I provided tips on body language to convey confidence without arrogance. Most of these tips also apply to on-site interviews. And of course, you’ll want to dress to impress.

Preparing to successfully interview for your first managerial position has an additional benefit: you’ll be increasing your self-awareness and practicing leadership skills such as self-awareness, communication and problem-solving. Embrace the process and get that job.

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