The One Question You Must Ask to Get the Job

Today I had a potential buyer of one of my investment properties tell me they need to buy my property at a 25% discount off the price I'm asking so they can make enough profit. You can guess my next thought - who cares what this guy needs? I need to sell it for market value. This got me thinking about how this guy approached a sale in a really ineffective way. Any transaction or negotiation is about two parties (or more) and their respective needs. You go to the store because you need milk, the store doesn't really care that you need milk, but they provide it to meet your needs because in turn their needs to make money are met. Grocery stores don't approach customers in ads by saying "come buy our stuff because we need money", they focus on their customers needs and do not bring up their own.

If you are searching for a job you must consider the company's needs. Why are they hiring for this position? You should ask this during the interview as early on as possible. The answer will give you greater insight into what their need is. If the last person was fired or left, the work probably still needs to be done, so either it's not being done (or not as well), or it's getting dumped on someone else that has other things they need to do. In this situation, you would be filling a need to get this work done. If the position is new, the company is probably growing. So by hiring you the company can keep up with their customers' demand. If you get a wishy washy answer to this question, the company may just be window shopping and not really serious about hiring. That situation is not one you want to be in. 

If you are a cyber security professional you can assume the need you are filling has to do with preventing attacks, mitigating attacks, finding security vulnerabilities, preventing breaches that can be expensive and damage the company's reputation, keeping the company compliant with regulations, and so on. Sit down and really think about why the company should hire you and what they will get out of it. If you've ever been asked the dreaded "why should we hire you" question during an interview, this is a great time to explain your value. You should stay away from vague answers about how smart and hard working you are, but give a tailored response as to why you are filling their specific need. For example, if the company has recently suffered a major breach, you can explain how your skills as a penetration tester can prevent future mishaps and help restore the company's reputation. If you are in sales this question is easy - every day you're not working for them is a day they're missing out on potential sales and therefore revenue. If you can figure out how you would add to the company's bottom line, then you will have a great value proposition for your potential employer.

If you've been at the same company for awhile and don't know your value, feel free to give me call. I can help you figure out where your salary should be and what your market value range is. Call Stratus Search with your recruiting or job search needs at (727) 308-7887.