Effective communication can make or break your chances of getting the job you want. That’s the essential point I’ve tried to make in my recent postings about job hunting. Studying rhetoric – the art and science of persuasion — is a good first step. Rhetoric doesn’t just help you give a great speech. It can also help you get a great job.
In preparing my get-a-job posts, I read widely and learned a few things myself. Two articles seemed especially relevant, both by Jeff Haden in Inc. magazine. The first helps you prepare the questions you’ll want to ask when your interviewer says, “Do you have any questions you’d like to ask?” Hint: don’t ask when you can take your first vacation. You can find the first article here.
Haden’s second article defines what makes people charismatic. It’s really not about you. It’s about how you treat other people. If you always try to draw attention to yourself, you’ll be perceived as arrogant and self-centered. If you deflect the attention to others, you’ll be perceived as charismatic. Here’s a simple question: how do people feel when they’re around you? Do they feel suffocated because you suck up all the air? Or do they feel positive and enthusiastic because you take them seriously and promote their interests? Haden’s second article gives ten tips on how to be charismatic; you can find it here.