[MMM] | One Key Way to Get The Role At Work You Deserve (Almost Guaranteed)

Happy Tuesday morning!
One of my favorite things that I got to experience as a child growing up was being part of Cub, Scouts & Venturers. I was so fortunate to learn so many things, build great relationships and be mentored by such amazing leaders.
There were many practical things I learned such as how to tie knots, read a compass, build a fire and camp in the wilderness with a minimal amount of impact on the environment. There were also strategic things I learned, such as setting goals, working on a team, planning for camping trips and learning how to lead my peers. One key thing that I also learned in scouting was how preparation makes for better outcomes.
I was reminded of this when I read in the NY Times article on how Jim Yong Kim the current President of the World Bank got his role. Jim Yong was being interviewed by President Obama for the role of President at the World Bank, It was a common understood principle to hire an economist to lead the World Bank. Jim Yong was an anthropologist by education. He didn’t quite meet the qualifications that was typically looked for in that role. President Obama asked him why he should hire him when he didn’t meet such a fundamental requirement for the role. Jim Yong had an interesting response. He had done something that no other candidate for the role had done, he had read President Obama’s mother’s Ph.D. thesis. Like his mother he was, he was also an anthropologist and was able to explain the some of the observations in the paper and how they related to economics.
He was able to not only address the question about why hire him but also share how being trained as an anthropologist brought something unique and fresh to the organization. Present Obama did end up selecting him for the role. He remarked a few years that the response was one of the smartest he’d ever heard in a job interview.


Preparation is key and should compose much of the time spent in your job search.


Whether you are being interviewed for the role of the President of the World Bank or you’re attempting to get that new role as a manager, it’s all about preparation. They say in real estate it’s “location, location, location” but I think in interviewing its, “preparation, preparation, preparation”. Preparation can come and all kinds of forms, and there’s never been an easier time to find the information about the person who is interviewing you. Preparing by looking at the LinkedIn bio, following the company on Twitter and yes, maybe reading the CEO’s PhD. thesis. Next time you are getting ready for the role, remember it’s often not always the best candidate gets the position, it’s the candidate that creates the most compelling “pitch” through being prepared.
Leading, along the road with you!
AlanP.S. You might be asking yourself, “What are my options for training and professional development within the Public Service? Am I in the right kind of role within the Public Service? How do I leverage my previous experience to move toward more senior levels?” Join our lunch and learn webinar for public servants on May 22 from 12 – 1 pm EDT to learn how to we can help.
P.P.S. You may be wrestling with the question of whether you are in the right career for you, and where to go from here. Perhaps you know precisely the role that you are looking for, but are having a hard time finding it in today’s competitive market. Register to join our CareerClass “Career confusion? Ask Alan – Find clarity and take control” on Wednesday, May 23 from 12:00pm – 1:00pm.