The Race for work

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I, I… Syndrome

Most of our interactions with the world are self-centered.  We tend to apply the same approach, rather unintentionally, in job search as well.  When we approach recruiters, we focus on ourselves like – I have great experience, I have an eminent degree, I have coveted certifications, I, I, I…

I call this I2 Syndrome.

We focus on our passion, our dream job, and our salary expectations and fail to address what recruiters really need.  I2 Syndrome blindfolds people’s way to reach their dream job.  It’s a very important skill in reaching out to successful people as well.  If you know what other are expecting from you and address them accordingly, you almost instantly get access to things you need.

Unfortunately recruiting managers do not care about your passion, your dream job requirements and not even your skill set and credentials.  They want to know how you can solve their problems.  In order to find what they need, recruiters may have to check your skill set and credentials, but that’s not their ultimate motive.

In most of the interviews, recruiters struggle to extract what they need to know from candidates while candidates focus on bragging about themselves.  We know that, ‘in order to get something, you need to give something before’.  But to give something, you need to understand what other person really needs in that moment.  You may not know what other person really needs unless you systematically approach and do your homework before getting into your first interaction.  If you are really serious about cracking a job interview, understanding what problems company is trying to solve before stepping into interview helps you immensely in coming out successfully.

In general life when I deal with anyone, I set a rule to myself to control my I2 Syndrome and overcome it altogether. Why I call this I2, why not I3? Because I want to sensitize myself every time I use ‘I’ twice, I remind myself about this syndrome and think of other person and talk something about the other person.  This worked very well for me in social interactions, emails, and also in reaching out to influential people.

When you write to important people expecting some favor or even just a reply, watch your I2 syndrome.  Remember that you need to talk about them every time you use ‘I’ twice.  This approach puts you in a corrective mode and transforms you into thinking about others first.  You slowly take that into your advantage to communicate how you can help them with your unique strengths.  Before meeting recruiters and other influential people, try to understand their concerns first, think of what they really care about, what they already have and they are looking for.

This is a huge shift in thinking for me.  After I understood this and adjusted my behavior accordingly, I started closing challenging interviews, got reply from busy people.  I could get access to people once I thought I never will be able to meet them.  And it opened up serendipitous possibilities for me.

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