Tough Interview Question - Why should I hire you?

Why should I hire you?

Similar interview questions:
Sell me on yourself.
What makes you different from others we are interviewing?
Should we take a chance on you?

Why the interviewer is asking this question:
The interviewer is asking you directly to come up with points of differentiation in your background. S/he is seeking giving you the open opportunity to sell yourself. Yet doing it in a way that puts you into the hot seat of talking about yourself in a very open and direct manner. So s/he wants to know what you consider to be the defining aspects of your background that sets you apart. Yet it is open-ended, so you can go in multiple directions.

The best approach to answering this question:
Focus on your education, work experience, skills, aptitudes and abilities which differentiate you from your competition. Make no mistake about it, this is a competitive posturing question. So any statements you might make need to be backed up with examples that show how you try are the best person for the position. Your answer should be geared toward meeting the employer's needs, not your personal needs.

An example of how to best answer this question for experienced candidates:
"Because I'm the best person for the job. Here's why: I have all of the required qualifications that you are asking for in this job. The education, the experience, the industry experience. But I also bring a passion to the job that makes me the best person for the job. Why? Because that passion translates into results. I really love what I do. Let me give you an example…"

An example of how to best answer this question for entry level candidates:
"Because I'm the best person for the job. I know you are interviewing other students with similar qualifications in terms of my degree and my internship. Yet I was awarded the Employee of the Month award as an intern this past summer and was the first intern ever to receive that award. I was given that award over all other nominations of their full-time staff. That award was given due to my delivery on a project that no one else had been able to successfully complete. I not only delivered the project, but I did it while also working on two other projects, both of which were completed during my job one summer as an intern. Let me tell you about the project where I won the award…"

An example of how you should not answer this question:
"Well, I really need this job and it would be awesome to work here! I've been unemployed for a while and my Mom is starting to get on my case about it. And, y'know, I really don't like living in the basement anymore. I want to get out on my own and be independent. So if you hire me, I would be able to get out of the house and be off on my own. Life would be good."

Remember to answer each interview question behaviorally, whether it is a behavioral question or not. The easiest way to do this is to use an example from your background and experience. Then use the S-T-A-R approach to make the answer a STAR: talk about a Situation or Task (S-T), the Action you took (A) and the Results achieved (R). This is what makes your interview answer uniquely yours and will make your answer a star!

Further review: know the answers to these Standard Interview Questions to be fully prepared for your interview!

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