Job Interview: 60-40 Rule

From my personal experience, I learned that if a job applicant is talking with his supposed immediate superior, he must devote 60% of his interview time trying to build rapport. The remaining 40% of the interview time must be dedicated to technical know-hows; this is the impress-your-interviewer time. Believe me, your future immediate superior wouldn’t care even if there’s someone better than you, technically-speaking, as long as he/she likes you to be part of his/her team. Build rapport with your future immediate superior because he/she is the person who has the power to forward your application to his/her boss.

Normally, the interview process goes like this:
1. HR Recruitment
2. Immediate Superior
3. Immediate Superior’s Boss
4. HR Manager

It’s different when you’re already facing your immediate superior’s boss. He wouldn’t care if he likes you on a personal level or not as long as your credentials are good. So, do the reverse. Take 60% of the interview time trying to build a good impression that you are skillful, knows how to multi-task, flexible and competent. The 40% of the interview time must be about selling your winsome personality like being a team player.

Rapport is important to your immediate superior because nobody would like to work with people who have attitude problems. Your immediate superior’s boss would not care much about that since he deals with your immediate superior and not you.

Technical know-how is important to your immediate superior’s boss because a department head or manager wants nothing but the best bunch of people under his wing.