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How to Stand out in Every Job Interview

Be Memorable by Using the Power of Storytelling


How to Stand out in Every Job Interview


How do you make sure you stand out from the other candidates? One powerful way is through storytelling.


And no you don't need to have a masterclass to develop this skill. Simply use the formula used by Hollywood writers churning out hundreds of hit movies year after year!


Let’s break down how to do this using the six stages of a drama: exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution, and denouement.


abstract art of two women around the moon and stars
Stories are powerful ways to stand out in a job interview

How to Stand out in Every Job Interview - Exposition


The exposition sets the scene and introduces the main characters and current state. Think of the beginning of "The Devil Wears Prada," where we see Andy starting her new job at Runway Magazine, highlighting her challenges.


Example: The Chaotic Supply Chain


I started at a company where our operations were a mess. We had 78 different systems for order processing, manufacturing, and logistics. Every order had to be cross-checked across multiple systems to avoid mistakes, and with over 10,000 items shipped daily, it was a logistical nightmare.


Rising Action


Rising action in a movie builds tension by showing the protagonist facing and tackling problems. In "Erin Brockovich," Erin starts uncovering the environmental issues and builds her case, facing increasing resistance.


Rising action adds drama and allows your audience to experience the challenge first hand. This enables you to stand out in the job interview - because they are feeling the emotion as you are narrating the story. Feelings, as we know, are powerful!


Example: Systemic Inefficiencies


Staying with the example of the supply chain story. You can continue on...


The inefficiencies were glaring. The team was overworked, constantly fixing errors instead of focusing on productivity. Morale was low.


Climax


The climax is the story’s peak, where the protagonist faces the biggest challenge.


Example: The Lowest Point


The turning point came when we missed a crucial shipment for a major client because of a system error. The client was furious. The account manager literally called the shipping department six times in one day.


Falling Action


This shows the protagonist taking steps to resolve the conflict. For example, in "The Martian," Mark Watney implements his plan to get rescued, following the peak of his struggle of nearly dying.


Example: Leading the Change


This was my moment to step up. I was hired to implement the SAP system but I identified that we did not have a fundamental process on how each department communicated with each other. I led a cross-functional initiative to design an integrated process.


Resolution


The resolution ties up loose ends and shows the aftermath of the protagonist’s actions. For example, in "Toy Story 3," the toys find a new home, resolving the main conflict.


Example: Transforming Chaos into Order


The new system started to show results. Even as we were rolling out SAP, orders were processed smoothly, errors decreased, and our operations became more efficient. The warehouse transformed from chaos to order. Employee stress started to alleviate.


Denouement


Denouement provides closure, showing the lasting impact of the protagonist’s journey. In "Forrest Gump," we see how Forrest’s actions affected those around him and his own life.


Example: Lasting Impact and Recognition


The successful process rollout meant that customer satisfaction increased; The transformation was recognized as one of the most impactful changes in the business unit, and I was acknowledged for leading this initiative.


Conclusion


Storytelling resonates. Period. Human beings are programmed to tune into stories. We remember them. If you use the above steps to describe each and every experience, you will be seen as the candidate that they want. This is how you stand out in every job interview!


Storytelling allows you to take your hiring manager on a journey. They get to experience the pain of the conflict and the joy of the resolution.


Remember to always back up your claims with metrics and data to provide tangible evidence of your achievements. This combination of storytelling and data makes your experiences memorable AND credible!

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