Frequently I see long-winded resumes. They often belong to people who are verbose talkers as well as writers. I suspect these same people don’t realize it how badly it reflects on them. It shows an inability to express oneself crisply and succinctly. How do you suppose a hiring manager is going to view that in an interview? Regardless of whether they realize how they are coming across, they are in serious need of professional interview coaching.
Here is the point: Verbosity is likely to cause the listener to stop listening and focus on how he or she is going to get rid of the candidate!
Why are some people so verbose? In some cases they may simply be narcisstic. But I think in most cases it is either the inability to express oneself well, or it is simply fear, and perhaps desperation caused by the inability to get interviews; more reason for them to get professional help.
Some people believe they can’t answer a question without building the background to their answer first. They fail to respect the listener’s ability to comprehend. They may fear that if they leave anything out they may not pique the listener’s interest. Of course quite the opposite is usually the case. Interviewers are interested in getting the answer quickly and asking a follow-on question or moving on to the next question, not listening to a lot of information that doesn’t answer their question. Verbosity is an interview killer!
So here are just some suggestions for people who are verbose.
- Listen well – this is #1 in importance. When interviewing, listening is more important than speaking. Focus on being crisp and concise.
- Pause, Breathe. Listen for reaction. Watch body language.
- Role play responding crisply and concisely with someone who can offer positive feedback. It takes lots of practice.
- If necessary pause a moment to organize your response when asked a question.
- Tell it but don’t tell it all – generate interest and bait the interviewer for more questions.
- Speak at a modest pace, not so slowly as to be boring and not so fast that the interviewer cannot grasp what you are saying.
- Practice good enunciation. Don’t slur your words. Get rid of the gum before the interview.
- Practice not using “um, uh, like” etc. Did you ever notice that good public speakers never utter any of these? They have trained themselves not to.
- And get help. Take the time to learn how to verbally communicate. It takes considerable practice and self-control to overcome verbosity:
Get more help on this and other tactics by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org or by visiting http://www.hoochresumes.com. And leave a comment if you like this post.