Clearing interview is easy if you can go into the mind of the recruiter and can program her mind accordingly. No, you wouldn’t do it with tricks only; but also with your level of honesty and knowledge of the job position you have applied for. But what if you can blow your recruiter and negotiate the salary very few can achieve? What if you just make the recruiter want you at any cost just by a simple tweak in your preparation? Yes, it would be wonderful. But how would you do it? How would you master the art of being the master of interview every time you enter the interview room?
Yes, here we introduce you to a magnificent technique which will literally blow your mind. It’s called Briefcase Technique and it is being propounded by entrepreneur and one of the great career experts Ramit Sethi.
To be able to master this briefcase technique you need to understand the foundations and why it works. In this article, first we will brief you about the briefcase technique, then we will talk about in detail how it works; next we will articulate why it works and lastly we will depict where this briefcase technique works.
What is the Briefcase Technique?
Interview is a discussion, not a battle. During this discussion, both parties negotiate to see if they are a good fit for each other. If yes, they go ahead and work together. If not, they both look for other opportunities. So, first of all never think that you are weaker party in the deal. Even if the employer is a giant company, don’t treat yourself as among insignificant individuals; rather trust in your abilities and skills.
If you don’t trust in your own capacity, briefcase technique is not for you. In briefcase technique you need to pull out a document from your briefcase showing your employer how she can improve one or more things about the company.
Remember employer will not always sit for taking your interview; recruiters will do who are the faces of the company. So you need to know when to present your document. If you show it to the recruiters, they may not understand the value. But if you are sitting with the employers who run the business, they will understand the value of the document and give you more preference over other candidates having equal skills.
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How does briefcase technique work?
First of all there are few things you need to consider before applying this technique.
Just don’t write anything in the proposal. The proposal should be relevant and should emphasize on the problems of the company (primarily) and not what have already been solved by the company. Find out the pressure points company has right now and try to concentrate on them. To do that you need to do your own preparation. Briefcase technique will only work once you prepare well beforehand for each and every interview. You need to showcase to the employer that as they are interested in working with you, you are equally excited to be able to work with them.
If you want to crack the interview, you need to prepare separately for briefcase technique. Knowing about the company will not help you seal the deal. You need to do more.
Open the virtual world of the company and do a SWOT and PESTEL analysis. Do both analyses using statistics. You don’t know what sort of employer you will face in the interview. They may have more logical mind that creative bent of thinking. Or else may be both! Your job would be to ensure that you appeal to both parts of the brains with your analyses.
Once you are done with the analyses, it is time for you to give some suggestions on the basis of the analyses. Your document would be meaningless without it. Add the suggestions you have for the pressing problems the company has been facing. Also add some strategies you would use to solve the issue. Be specific. Write down in the document how you will solve the problems. You should pose your solutions like this – if one works, you will keep the others in store; if one doesn’t work, you will implement the other strategies within one month. If you write this in your document, it will blow employer’s mind.
Next thing you need to think about when you are presenting the document. If you just present the document in the beginning, your briefcase technique will fail. Why would someone want to know something about the document until the discussion is relevant? So wait till the recruiter or the employer asks you – Why should I hire you or how can you add value to our business or similar questions? And then you can pull out that document and show how you can help the business grow and which strategies will work. One word of caution – don’t go in why the previous strategies implemented by the employers didn’t work or that sort of stuffs. This bent in the road may become costly for you.
While pulling out the document, you also need to ensure that you are providing it to the right person otherwise it would not work as effectively as it should. If you are sitting in front of the recruiters, they may not understand the value of your document.
Now you may think why this briefcase technique works. We will go in why. But before you need to know what briefcase technique is all about in relevance to the business. Via briefcase technique you want to influence the employer or the recruiter to offer you greater package than the average offerings. The people who will not use this technique won’t know how much they are leaving on the table. Use this briefcase technique in your next interview and see for yourself how it works.
Another important thing about briefcase technique is that it forces you to become selective about the companies you will give interview in. You can’t go to any company and sit for interview. To be able to get more compensation, check the turnover and average pay package in the company. If a company’s turnover is US $100,000, it can’t pay you US $50,000 per annum as pay. Check the stats before going for interview and before using briefcase technique during the interview.
Why briefcase technique works?
Briefcase technique works because it emphasizes on the dire need employers face to be able to find the right candidate for the job.
The employers have decided to hire a person or two for mainly two reasons. The first reason is that the employers are too busy to do the work themselves. The second reason may be they want someone who is specialized in solving a typical problem which the existing people in the company are not able to. In that situation, imagine you present a document which directly speaks to the problem the employers are facing.
You are presenting an analysis of the thing the employers have been struggling for quite some time. Wouldn’t they feel happier that when they are feeling bogged down with how to solve the problem of the company someone sitting just the other side has already documented it and its solution on paper? Moreover they are busy and they like to tweak things instead of creating things from the scratch.
Whenever you are presenting the document by using briefcase technique, all you are doing is you are leaving the employers the opportunity to tweak on the document you have created from scratch. That saves time and they feel that with little work, they can go somewhere, at least a place better than they are currently in. That instantly helps you win the interview. You immediately prove to the employers and the recruiters that you are the right bet irrespective of how many qualifications other candidates show on paper.
The last but not the least reason for which briefcase technique works is because by using this technique you are giving direction to the interview, not the recruiters and the employers! Before you presented the document, it was they who were dictating the discussion. After using the briefcase technique, it is you who will snatch the deal in your direction.
Now on everything they will ask will be on the basis of the document you have already presented. And after being convinced about your skills in solving the problems of the company when they will talk about salary, you can negotiate. Don’t act dumb here. Have some documents and industry reports ready for the average salary being given to the people who are holding the similar positions in the industry.
Pull out some reports from Salary.com, Glassdoor.com, and PayScale.com and show them the salary you should be paid and what the employers are offering. It will prove that you have done your preparations before coming for the interview and you are a serious candidate. And then you will be able to snatch a great deal from them. This technique is being used by thousands of people already and they have successfully got higher pay-package and better deals according to the proponent of this technique, Ramit Sethi.
In which situations briefcase technique works?
You may wonder that briefcase technique only works in case of freelancing. But that’s not true at all. Briefcase technique works in every industry subject to your knowledge about the whole thing. It will work if you will work on it.
No matter what industry you want to give interview for, you can use this technique and can ensure that you get a good hike on whatever you are currently receiving. That means briefcase technique doesn’t only work in case of job interviews and freelancing; it also works if one day you want to increase your pay-package. Simply sit with your boss and present him with the document of how you can solve the problems company has been facing for a long time.
A word of caution here – you need to think that your move should not make your boss insecure if he is not the employer. If he feels insecure he will never allow you to work on your recommendations and forget about an increased pay package. In “48 Laws of Power”, Robert Greene talked about a law which is very relevant in this scenario – “Never outshine the master.” You need to remember it before using the briefcase technique in case of promotion and while dealing with your boss about increasing your compensation.
Use this briefcase technique in any sort of business deals where you know that the things are not going in your favour. Prepare beforehand and arrange the statistics properly in a document to showcase that you have done your homework and you can’t be put on hold as the other party is more eloquent in speaking things out.
In the final analysis
Briefcase technique is not so much popular because the first thing is not in order. The interviewees are still feeling lack of importance whenever they are sitting with the interviewer. They think that the company and its decisions are more important than what they think about themselves. This idea about you has to change. You need to think equal in any sort of interview or negotiation to be able to implement this briefcase technique. First empower yourself, and then empower your ability to get compensated. If you trust yourself enough and know in your heart that no matter what happens you would make it to the top of your professional career, there will be no-one who can stop you.
Thus, don’t rush for every interview that comes your way. If you are fresher and searching for jobs, try to go for 1-2 interviews per week to increase your impact. There is no point in going to every interview without any preparation. If you prepare well and keep your mind-set right then you would not only crack the interview, you would also be able to earn a much better salary than the average. Take your time, step back and ask the right questions about whatever you want to do in your professional career.