small change: your 3-step interview plan (2)


small change 


Ciarán Fenton

How small changes in your behaviour will have a big impact on how you work, lead or follow

That’s the working title of a book I’m writing, initially as a series of short blogs.

Blog 1 small change: seven principles

Blog 2 small change: your career is a unique business

Blog 3 small change: your soft balance sheet

Blog 4 small change: your D Liability

Blog 5 small change: your timeline

Blog 6 small change: your formative years

Blog 7 small change: your A asset

Blog 8 small change: your career equity

Blog 9 small change: your curriculum vitae

Blog 10 small change: your emotional intelligence

Blog 11 small change: your reputation

Blog 12 small change: you, three years from now

Blog 13 small change: your purpose, strategy & behaviour (PSB)

Blog 14 small change: your soft p&l

Blog 15 small change: your 7 career options

Blog 16 small change: your relationship grid

Blog 17 small change: you are not a human capital asset

Blog 18 small change: your 7-step job search plan

Blog 19 small change: your 3-step interview plan (1)

Blog 20 small change: your 3-step interview plan (2)

small change

Seven principles

Principle 2

Organisations are more likely to hire you if

  • you’re the least risky
  • not, necessarily, the best


Blog 19  small change: your 3-step interview plan (2)

yoru three-step interview plan

Step 2  Demonstrate, not assert, you can meet needs

Once you establish, accurately, buyer’s needs, you can move to Step 2 as follows:

  • Taking each need, in turn, tell a story that demonstrates rather than asserts your ability to meet that need.
  • When you have finished telling your story ask the buyer if that story demonstrates that you could meet that need, or not.
  • If  yes, move on to the next need and story. If not, ask “in what way does that story not meet your need”. Find the gap.


Examples of assertion:

  • “People tell me I’m a visionary leader”
  • “I don’t suffer fools”
  • “There’s very little in this sector I don’t know”


Examples of demonstration:

  • “If you call x, y and z I believe they will say they felt well led by me. Do you want their numbers”
  • “An example of how I successfully motivated my team is when I involved them in a by doing b”
  • “I’m pleased to say that I’m frequently asked to speak at conferences because I believe event organisers feel that I have deep knowledge of d,e & f. Last year, for example, I spoke at…”


When you get to the end of the buyer’s list of needs and your demonstration stories there will be a gap or gaps between their needs and your pitch.

There is always a gap.


No one gets a 10.


If you do, it’s either a lie or a mistake.

If you haven’t found the gap you can’t move to Step 3.

If you do, you will “miss a trick”.

Most interviewees who fail, fail because they are afraid to ask the gap question.

Mind the gap.


Ciarán Fenton



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s