Job interviews can be nerve-racking – you’ll spend tons of time practicing what to say, googling typical questions asked by employers, and reading about the open position.
What’s even more stressful is on the day itself, when you’re waiting at the lobby and you spot other intimidating applicants who, you feel, are more qualified than you. So you stretch the truth because no one can be hurt by a small lie, right?
The Question to Reveal the Faker
Don’t scoff at the idea because there are plenty of people who are guilty of doing this. In fact, 81 percent of applicants lie during job interviews, The Best Place to Work author Ron Friedman said. Even Elon Musk, Tesla CEO, knows that others lie just to secure a position, so, he has one trick up his sleeves to know if a person is bluffing.
The billion-dollar question is: what were the hardest problems you’ve ever faced and what did you do to solve these?
The investor, who divulged this tip during the World Government Summit held in Dubai, sees this inquiry as a very important one that can reveal a lot about a candidate. Elon claims he will immediately know if the applicant was really the one who solved a company’s problem or if he/she was just merely a team player.
Those who took ownership would really know the small details about how they solved the problem, Elon further expounded, and that they can elaborate on the steps they took just to fix the mess.
They can also open up about the struggles they encountered and answer questions about it on multiple levels, he said.
However, for the liars, it’s the exact opposite: they only answer on one level and stay stuck in there, the SpaceX founder shared. When fakers can’t talk much about the supposed problem, then the candidate wasn’t likely the one in charge of the solution.
Elon said that when you are faced with a difficult situation, you won’t be able to forget that, so if you’re really the problem-solver, you can talk at length about the entire process.
There’s nothing more embarrassing than your possible employer finding out that you are not being truthful. Honesty is the best policy, the famous maxim goes, but it is easier said than done, especially if you want the job so bad.
However, it is highly important to be as real as you can because bosses prefer those who admit their shortcomings than being a liar.
Interview expert Barry Drexler shared that it’s OK if you don’t meet every description. Be honest about it and share it in a positive way – so if you were asked of the skills you lack, highlight those you have that you feel are almost the same as the one you don’t possess and underline how willing you are to learn about it.
If you were asked if you have taken up a managerial role and you are well-aware that you’ve not been one, explain nicely the truth and share how you have led a team once in solving a company problem.