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How to Close the Interview in A Way That Opens Doors

If you want the job, ask for it!  Be unlike 99% of job candidates and come right out and ask “Can you offer me this job?” at the end of your interview.  You may be surprised at the results! Particularly is you’re applying for a job that requires the ability to close the sale, these simple words may impress the interviewer like nothing else.  Of course, the interviewer may not have the authority to offer you the job on the spot, but think of it this way: the worst case scenario is that the interviewer says no.  In this case, make a point to leave the interview with a clearer idea of the next steps in the process by asking questions such as:

  • “Would you like me to return to interview with anyone else here?”  If they’re serious about you and it’s a higher-level position, there could be a 2nd (or possibly a 3rd or 4th) round of interviews.
  • “When can I expect to hear from you?”  This will let you know when to follow up and allow you to calibrate your response so that it’s timed not too early but not too late.
  • If you can’t get an answer to the last question, try ”When is the latest I should expect to hear from you?” followed by “May I contact you if I don’t hear from you by this date?”  Most will appreciate your proactiveness.

Then run home and send a thank you note that day!

If for whatever reason the job doesn’t look like it will be a fit, be direct.  Never waste the opportunity to ask: “Can you think of anyone who might be interested in someone with my skills?”  If they like you but you’re not a good fit for the job, they might refer you internally and clue you in to other open positions at the company.  Then again if nothing in their company is suitable they might refer you to a peer at another company.

Even if you don’t get the job, an interview is a precious opportunity loaded with potential.  The interviewer may revisit your application at a later date, they may be able to give you valuable feedback as to why you didn’t get the job (to prime you for getting the next one you apply for), or you may develop an ally who can provide other resources or connections for your job search.  Make the most of it!