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Andrew Burnette <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Andrew Burnette <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 29 Apr 2011 13:48:04 -0400
text/plain (120 lines)

You're absolutely right that one should not try to lie or manipulate an
interviewer.  And I specifically advocated against misrepresenting oneself
in post.  I may not have stated that as clearly as I had intended.

The original post asked two questions.  First, is there a magic bullet
solution that applies in all situations for all users?  And second, how do
you answer that question when it's clear that the interviewer is looking for
the answer life, the universe, and everything.

I think the discussion so far has answered the question that there is no
single solution that works in every situation for everyone, everywhere.  But
there is a wealth of information available for the practitioner to help
inform his/her decisions.

As for the second question, my advice is that the interviewee needs to
convince her prospective employer that there is no magic bullet, and that
"it depends" in most situations.  Furthermore she need so convince the
interviewer that she is familiar with all that literature and possesses a
wealth of information that makes her uniquely qualified for the job.

But at no point did I suggest that an interviewee misrepresent himself or
lie to a prospective employer.  If he is interviewing and is not familiar
with most or all of these resources, then he should probably get reading.
 If he IS familiar with all these resources and has a solid background, than
I see no problem with using the opportunity to explain to a prospective
employer that the situation is complicated, but he is the best, most capable
candidate for the job (without lying or misrepresenting himself, of course).

Andrew Burnette*

On Fri, Apr 29, 2011 at 10:29 AM, Jared Spool <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> With all due respect Andrew, I think this is an awful way to approach an
> interview.
> If the interviewer is looking for something specific and you fudge your
> answer, you're likely to get caught. Or worse, you'll get a job that you're
> not equipped to handle and you'll get caught. Developing a reputation as a
> fraud is not a good way to advance your career.
> It's ok to say you don't know something in an interview. As others in this
> thread have demonstrated, there are a ton of great resources available to
> help answer the question and, right now, it's an important one.
> Many organizations need to have the skills and knowledge behind latest
> techniques from neuroscience, behavioral economics, and persuasive design.
> Learning everything you can about these fascinating fields is a great way to
> sharpen your skill set.
> But, for the Gods' sake, don't use manipulative techniques to try to hide
> your lack of knowledge in an area.  Just honestly be who you are. That's the
> best strategy, in my opinion.
> Jared
> Jared M. Spool
> User Interface Engineering
> 510 Turnpike St., Suite 102, North Andover, MA 01845
> e: [log in to unmask] p: +1 978 327 5561
>  Blog:  Twitter: @jmspool
> On Apr 28, 2011, at 1:02 PM, Andrew Burnette wrote:
> > I think you're right--that there is no silver bullet to enticing users.
> > However, you are interviewing for a job, and so your task is to convince
> > prospective employers that you (and you alone) have all the right
> answers. I
> > do not suggest lying to give them the answer that they want.  But here
> are a
> > couple of ways that question could be answered
> >
> > 1) Let the interviewer know of several tactics that you've used in the
> past
> > or that you think might work to entice users to click.  Feel free to
> explain
> > (briefly) how it's actually a complicated question and that each
> situation
> > has to be addressed differently.  Again, emphasize that you (and you
> alone)
> > have the experience and knowledge to find the solutions to each
> situation.
> >
> > 2) Borrow a tactic from politics, and answer the question that you want
> them
> > to ask.  So instead of answering the question of enticing users, answer
> the
> > question of how complicated the web has become and how each user is
> > different, but you (and you alone) have the knowledge and experience to
> find
> > solutions to that challenge. Or answer some other question that you think
> > you should be asked.
> >
> > There are other ways to answer the question, of course.  But trying to
> > explain to a prospective employer that you don't have a magic wand may
> not
> > get the best results. They want to know how you can get them more clicks.
> > You just have to convince them that you (and you alone) have the
> knowledge
> > and experience that will get them more clicks.
> >
> > I hope this helps.  Good luck with the job search.

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