Skip to main content

Post Topics

Show more

Interviews 1 | Concrete and Specific

Concrete and Specific:

One of the key elements to mastering the interview process is knowing how to give Concrete and Specific Answers to every question that is asked.

Consider the following example:
The interviewer is asking the same questions to 15 different candidates. Marvin who is looking for a trainer asks one question that he is more interested in than all the rest: “Tell me about a time you worked with another worker who was under preforming?”
Then 14 candidates come in with answers that sound something like this:
” Once I worked with someone who was struggling in their sales stats. I gave her suggestions about how to profile for sales and ask open ended questions. She improved so dramatically within the two sessions we worked together that her supervisor emailed me a thank you note.”
Then candidate 15 comes in and is asked the same question with a very different answer:
“Last month, I worked with Rachel. She had worked four hours that day and only had one sale so far. Her position is to take incoming calls. The first thing I did was take some time to understand her struggle. I asked whether she was having more trouble identifying opportunities to sell or how to word them. She replied that both were equally troublesome to her. So I had her walk me through the call she had just gotten finished with. We reviewed the account together and I showed her the five places I always look on each call for clues. I also pointed out six sales possibilities that could have saved this customer money and time. We pulled up some previous calls and reviewed each account. I roll played with her to help her practice saying the information to me first, and help her tweak things to her style. Then we took some live calls together. The first set of calls I profiled with her and walked her through each account and what I saw and narrowed the best sale for that call. The next set of calls I had her walk me through each account. Then I sat back and let her work on her last set standing by to answer questions. Then I made a plan with her to check in at the end and see how she did. By the end of the day she had moved from a 2% sales rate, of sales per call with one sale, to a 15% sales rate with 9 sales. This was still below our goal, but much better than she had been doing. I checked in with her three times in the following 4 weeks and found she moved from a Month To Date of 12% to 19% to 23%. This is not a top performers data but well within our accepted range. I received a personal email from her supervisor thanking me for my work and letting me know that she was still preforming at the levels expected, and credited me with having provided her with the tools she needed.

Stand Out
Which of these answers would the interviewer see as identifying the candidate he is looking for? Of course the second. But the first is the type of answer that most people give. Or they will throw out five examples, all on which are at that basic surface level. 

The concrete and specific answer technique means:

  • You are giving specific answers. 
    • HOW did you help? 
    • WHICH open ended questions? 
    • WHICH employee, or if privacy is an issue give something. “I worked with someone from an my team.” 
    • WHEN did you do this?
    • What screens did you look at with team member? 
As much detail as you can without being a chatter box (talking too much). Stick to details that pertain to the questions. The color of Rachel’s shirt doesn’t matter, unless you specifically used that to “build rapport” with her. 

Details are important. Use details that highlight something you feel is something you did well in that situation that had a direct positive result.


You are giving concrete answers. 
  • “She had a low sales rate that day”, does not cut it. 
  • “She had a 2% sales rate that day with only one sale in her first four hours of her shift” is concrete. 

This approach nails down exactly what we are talking about here. It gives the interviewer, Marvin, a place to frame and understand the situation and relate it to situations either similar to ones he had, or similar to ones he might expect you’d be in.




See Also:

Darrell Wolfe, Topos Consultant

Comments

Connect With Me

Popular posts from this blog

New Post at Wolfe for Office

I wrote a new post: I am a Conservative-Liberal | Republicans and Democrats are actually the same party, here's why I'm a #ChristianLibertarian







Darrell G. Wolfe

Story Teller | INFJ | Futuristic | Intellection | Learner | Ideation | Achiever | Command | Input | Focus | Multipotentialite

Book Review: Name of the Wind

So a while back, I was walking through Auntie's Bookstore, in Spokane, WA. I've read pretty much everything ever written by Ted Dekker, Bill Myers, CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien, and many others.

I told her I like the Fantasy & Science Fiction genres, and I was looking for a new author.

"I have just the one," she said. "Follow me." She came out from behind the counter and we meandered up and down a few aisles. "Here it is," She turned and handed me this book:



"Hm. I've never heard of him," I replied.

"He's Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and Chronicles of Narnia all wrapped up into one amazing story," she was quite excited. "You'll love it!"

The woman handed me a few others to consider and then went about her duties. I took pictures but didn't have any money to spend that day.

Later, because I'd mentioned it, my boss bought it for my birthday.

I just finished all 713 pages, and I am AMAZED!

This migh…

An Open Letter: John Stumpf, Wells Fargo Board, and Policy Making Departments

On 12/28/13, I wrote the following letter to the then CEO & President of Wells Fargo, John Stumpf. It was in part, a response to the LA Times Article and the poor response from Wells Fargo leadership.

I later worked for the executive office and saw how they handle these letters. They assign them to a paper-pusher who could care less. They draft a form response, and it gets tallied in the statistics.

By the time it makes it to the CEO, it's only data in a pie chart. "We had 365 complaints this month. x number of complaints about checking, y number about sales practices, Etc." They tally it up, if it's not a big enough stat, it gets zero attention. Most things that do require attention get just enough to make it go away, but never deal with the root.

I was one of many hundreds who spoke up loudly and actively for years before 2013 and years after. The news cycle of 2016 showed that it cost them $185 Million dollars to ignore the feedback their frontline Team Membe…

Order. Chaos. In Between... The Bible

The Dark Ages were primarily due to religion.  Religious leaders had the audacity to claim that only they could interpret the Word of God for the simple-minded laymen. Even clergy of lower stature couldn't read the bible. This led to the strange fantasies, whimsies, and odd ideas of any number of so-called "Priests". 
Enter Martin Luther, circa 1517 A.D. He had the outrageous claim that all men were saved by Faith, and not deeds required of them by Religious Leaders. How did he get this idea? Reading the bible for himself.
The Reformation directly caused the Enlightenment.
When men were allowed to read the Bible for themselves, instead of being told what to believe by so-called leaders, they found a God of order. Therefore, the Earth created by this God would have order.
This thought led to Newtonian Physics, printed books, engines, light bulbs, Einstein's theory of relativity...
All science, medical advancements, everything you drive, see, eat...
The next time you …

Dreaming Blue: Faith and Hope Expounded

Hebrews 11:1

English Standard Version (©2001)
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.

American King James Version
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Now faith is the substance of things to be hoped for, the evidence of things that appear not.

Weymouth New Testament
Now faith is a well-grounded assurance of that for which we hope, and a conviction of the reality of things which we do not see.

Young's Literal Translation
And faith is of things hoped for a confidence, of matters not seen a conviction,

Interlinear Bible

1Nowfaithis the substance of things hoped for , the evidence of thingsnotseen . ~estin{V-PXI-3S}de;{CONJ}pivsti?{N-NSF}ejlpizomevnwn{V-PPP-GPM}uJpovstasi?,{N-NSF}pragmavtwn{N-GPN} e~legco?{N-NSM}ouj{PRT}blepomevnwn.{V-PPP-GPN}
_________________________________________

Hope: Greek Elpid'zo
to expect or confide:-(have, thing) hope(-d) (for)

Faith: Greek Pistis
conviction …

What is a Topos? A strategic position of opportunity and influence

What does Topos mean?Topos is a Greek word meaning: "Place, or Opportunity"
Properly:Any portion of space marked off, as it were, from surrounding, space Metaphorically: The condition or station held by one in any company or assemblyopportunity, power, occasion for actingA spot (general in space, but limited by occupancy; whereas chora is a large but participle locality). As used by me: Topos is a strategic position of opportunity and influence
Topos: Your Calling Everyone has a God given calling on this earth. There is something you were created and designed to do. What you are doing now may be "The Calling"; or, it may be the calling for this season of your life. Either way, you are either in your Topos, or you need to find it.

As you read the stories of biblical heros like Noah, Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David, Nehemiah, Peter, and Paul... etc... you find that God put them in the right place to do the right thing at the right time.

They ended up in their Topos, …

White Nose | Scene 3

The Aleve took effect with the help of two breakfast whiskey sours. It had been three days since his tussle in town and he still couldn't sleep, despite the nighttime cocktail.
Beams of light broke through the trees outlining Ash's house, tucked back off of the main road by a mile long rock driveway. One such beam was tanning his pale country face as he rocked on an old wooden chair he'd carved himself. Whittling was one of his most relaxing and profitable talents.
One look in the mirror each summer reminded him that he only retained two colors, pale Irish freckle and redneck red. Ash was careful to avoid too much contact with summer's star.
Dust down the drive revealed the presence of a visitor before the sound of tires on gravel confirmed it. Ash hasn't been visited by more than three people in the eight years he'd been back in town, so he picked up the hunting rifle, just in case.
The scope showed the local sheriff, his friend Dan. He didn't usually com…

Focus... Unfocused

There's a version of my writing that is organized, thoughtful, researched, helpful, even inspired at times... And then there's the other stuff. The other stuff is wild, incoherent, off the cuff, straight from my mind to your eyes, unfiltered, unedited. I've tried to separate these into different sites, combined them again, separated them again.... *sigh*I have too many thoughts, too many opinions, I know too much to ever make any of it make coherent sense on one website.So, here's my newest attempt to make it work... My blog, the one under my name, DarrellWolfe.com, it's for my randomness. This is where I'll post whatever I want, whatever thinking about, randomness.I'll link out to posts at my other sites, be they few or many, and you can find the organized stuff there. Let's see if that helps me keep some semblance of order.Darrell Wolfe Version 1,037



Topos Transitions

Transitions are rough. I've been through many seasons of my life where I had to make a transition. At each and every stage it was tough. There are always things you miss about the last season, things you are hoping for in the next season, and things you can't wait to be rid of in the season you're leaving behind.Whether you are sensing the winds of change blowing you out of your current situation, you are in the middle of the trip, or the winds are at your back and you settling in to your new spot... Remember this word: ToposTopos is a Greek word and it essentially means:Your strategic position of opportunity and influence.Make your Topos count today, wherever you are.Darrell




Credit Building

I just met three people working at Carl's Jr. We had a great talk about income, credit, and demystifying credit. So many people need a financial doctor and don't know it. Or they do know that they need one but don't know how easy it is to have one. I gave them a few tips, my business card for credit, my friend Ben's business card for Insurance and Investments, and told them to come see me so we can get into more details.They didn't realize that someone would be willing to help without having to pay a consulting fee or go or a class.I love helping people. Love it. And as Zig Ziglar said: You can have anything you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want. I don't concern myself with whose going to make me a sale, who I can get something from, etc. If I simply help everyone I can, without regards to my reward for it, the reward will come as a byproduct.It was a great reminder that I'm on the right path.Darrell

About Me

My photo

Hi! My name is Darrell G. Wolfe. I am a wealth of random information and I make complicated things simple at DarrellWolfe.com.

I have a knack for absorbing information, breaking it down to its root elements, and teaching it to others.

Most importantly, I help purpose-driven people to understand their place in His-Story and provide them the tools they need to fulfill their unique position of opportunity and influence in this world (their Topos).