Knowing your past accomplishments is crucial to preparing for an interview. Just as important is knowing how to express them well.
Accomplishment statements can usually be broken down into three or four simple steps; Problem, Action and Results (PAR) or Situation, Objective, Action and Result (SOAR).
To develop a PAR statement, state the problem you faced, the action you took and the results you achieved.
To develop a SOAR statement, state the situation you faced, the objective that needed to be accomplished, the action you took and the results you got.
Whether you develop PAR statements or SOAR statements, you first make a list of as many accomplishments as you can. Here are a few questions to help jog your memory.
Have you ever:
* Accomplished something for the first time?
* Solved a challenging problem?
* Increased effectiveness (accomplished something better)?
* Increased efficiency (accomplished the same or more with less)?
* Saved the company money?
* Received special awards or recognitions?
* Been promoted?
* Increased productivity?
* Increased sales?
* Developed a new procedure or process?
* Identified a new problem?
* Exceeded expectations?
Students with little or no work experience can still develop accomplishment statements based on schoolwork, such as GPA, timeliness in completing assignments, major school projects completed, special recognitions and any specific accomplishments that helped you stand out from other students.
Here is an example of someone who was not meeting production output requirements. As she analyzed the problem, she felt she could increase her productivity if she rearranged her work area to simplify production flow. She met with her supervisor and was given permission to make the necessary changes. Her production went up by 22 percent, well over the production output requirements.
Her accomplishment statement in a PAR format could be: "I was faced with a need to increase my production output. After analyzing my options, I obtained permission to simplify my production flow and was able to increase production by 22 percent."
This same statement can also be adjusted to be included on a rA(c)sumA(c) by removing the personal pronouns, such as, "Simplified production work flow that resulted in a 22 percent increase in production output."
Come to an interview with as many accomplishment statements as you can remember and expand on each statement as asked to by the interviewer.
Coming prepared with a series of accomplishment statements can lead to an effective interview that helps the interviewer better understand your value.
Ron Campbell has worked extensively in the job preparation and job search industry. He can be reached at 801-386-1111 or email@example.com.