How to get your passion across in an interview

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Whether it’s an interview in person or over a zoom, it’s relevant to both. Showing you’re passionate can sometimes be a difficult one to get across. You want to portray a trait perhaps without saying it directly, but it can be done in a variety of ways. It doesn’t just have to be mentioned in your list of strengths as an adjective, prove it.

“Passion/interest is one of the three pillars assessed at all interviews. If the interviewer feels you are not interested or passionate, forget about it, you won’t be hired,” said leading Irish career and interview coach Paul Mullen.

Here is a list of ways to get the point of passion across during a job interview.

Tell me about yourself: This is the perfect time to say what you’re passionate about. For example, I decided to study journalism because I was so passionate about writing. Passion can also stem from a good memory or experience, so don’t be afraid to share that. For example, I studied culinary arts because my grandmother and I always baked together as a child, and from that it became a huge passion of mine. “Body language and tone of voice will be painting a picture for the interviewer, they will be reading these signals during the interview. Don’t be a mannequin, let your passion come through an interview,” said Paul.

Tell about your extra miles: If you have gone above and beyond your role in a current or previous job don’t be afraid to specify the extra work you had done or any extracurricular activities within the company that you took part in. This shows that it was more than just a job for you but something you invested extra time into.

Be alert: “Be alert to three hidden questions checking your interest – why do you want this job, what do you know about our company, do you have any questions?” Paul advised.

Ask great questions: This is something that is often not thought about. We are very focused on having all the answers to the questions during an interview and it can slip our mind that you might want an answer from them. Good questions such as the ones below can really let your passion shine through without having to say it…

· What’s the process for contributing ideas?

· Where does the team/business hope to be in 12 months’ time?

· Is there room for progression?

· What does a “star member” within your team look like?

Reiterating your interest after: If the interviewer says is there anything else you’d like to ask/say, this is the perfect time to chime up and tell them how much you’d love to be a part of their team. Even if they don’t ask, don’t be afraid to say ‘Just as an aside I’d like to reiterate how much I feel this role would be a great fit for me…’ And of course, don’t forget to give them a heartfelt thank you for giving you the opportunity to interview for such a great role. “Don’t be afraid to tell the employer you’re excited and interested in the role. Some interviewees are reluctant, they fear they might come across desperate, BUT I’d rather risk coming across desperate than risk not coming across interested,” said Paul.


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