Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Rule 92: Study them closely


By on 11:53
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Late General Sani Abacha's Propagandist and Publisher,  Conscience Magazine, Chief Abiola Ogundokun 


If you are going for a promotion and there is competition, you need to read, understand and completely grasp what is being asked for. You need to tailor your CV, application document and interview technique, so that you fully fit the picture of the ideal candidate.  And you have to study what the competition is doing.
Suppose the job is for a supervisory departmental head of the computer sales division.  You know that you have:
·                    Experience of sales
·                    Experience of computers
·                    But little experience of supervising other staff.


“If the focus is on one of the two areas you are strong in, then you have already eliminated one of the candidates.  Now it’s a two horse race”

Now check out the opposition.  Suppose there are two other candidates:
·                    Tony has a good working knowledge of the products, good supervisory experience but knows bugger all about sales.
·                    Sandra is good on the sales side, has excellent supervisory experience but doesn’t understand the product at all.

Who is the ideal candidate?  It depends entirely on what the management is looking for – or what they think they are looking for.  The job obviously needs three parts – sales, product knowledge and supervisory duties.  You have two out of three – as do the other two candidates. But which one is the most important to the management?  You need to check this out carefully.

·                    Read the job description
·                    Liaise with whoever is doing the job now
·                    Research what the management is thinking.

If the focus is on one of the two areas you are strong in, then you have already eliminated one of the candidates.  Now it’s a two horse race. If, however, the third option is the focus supervision – the one area you are weak in, then you will have to swing the focus more towards your own skills and experience.  At interview you will have to find good reasons why your lack of experience doesn’t discount you – talk up the product and how essential it is to have a good knowledge of it and its potential, talk up the importance of sales  and how the department live or dies by its sales record.

Obviously this is just an example; the real world is much more complicated.

(Excerpts from THE RULES OF WORK by Richard Templer Read “How to back-stab in a cooperate environment” from The Rules tomorrow on Asabeafrika)

Rule-to-Work Series

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