Make yourself heard: Interview like a howler monkey!

October 2nd, 2012 | Articles, Interviewing | No Comments »

Can monkeying around really get you the job you want? The answer may surprise you!

In the dense, tropical jungle of the current job market, those job seekers who can emulate some of the habits of the South American howler monkey may see some surprising success while trying to grab a hold of a new job! Here are a few facts about the monkey to illustrate that point:

For most of their lives, howler monkeys reside atop the upper canopy of their South American home, descending to the ground on only the rarest of occasion. Here, they have a constant vantage of the ripest food and take advantage of any exposed fruit, flowers, and nuts. Basically, to be aware of the best meals, they position themselves above the impeding forest fray.

That’s how you need to approach your job search. Start by removing yourself from the distraction of lower priorities, elevating yourself above these root-like snares. Your greatest success can only occur when your distractions are several meters below your consciousness. For specific tips on how to better eliminate distractions, check out this article .

Howler monkeys, true to their name, let loose an intense howling noise when other animals invade their territory. Imagine a death metal growl filtered through a brass horn and you have the sound that each of these dog-sized monkeys makes. It is loud and distinct – some calls can be heard for up to 3 miles through dense foliage – and that is exactly how your confidence should carry.

You need to be reinforcing the full range of your talents, never allowing yourself to appear timid or dispassionate. Confidence is reassuring but, unlike the monkey, you should never board upon obnoxious arrogance. If you fail to assert yourself, you can lose job territory to a more assertive candidate. So, show some confidence and convince the hiring manager you already have the job.

On top of that distinct, throaty howl, howler monkeys also takes advantage of every natural advantage at their disposal. With a prehensile tail that acts like an additional limb, the monkeys can reach out for food that would have otherwise been unattainable. That allows them to stay atop the canopy and remain out of the reach of most predators.

Though your concern about predatory animals may be pretty slim, any extended connections you can make may give you a genuine edge. By restricting yourself to the web and job boards, you may not be able to reach out to those truly lush positions on the market. This is where networking comes in. Other people can act as your prehensile tail, allowing you to extend yourself into opportunities that would have otherwise been beyond your reach. Utilizing family, friends, former coworkers, professional recruiters, & the contacts you’ve made at industry gatherings, you can have that extra reach and wrap your fingers around sweet victory.

So, when someone tells you to stop monkeying around with your job search, you may want to give that statement a second thought. A howler’s approach may just stake out your claim on new job territory after all.

by James Walsh

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