Upon graduating from summer school, you’ll likely step into the job market. And while crafting compelling resumes and submitting online applications has never been easier, the interview process remains unchanged for the most part. It’s still awkward and it’s still nerve-wracking.
Think about what you did in the waiting room before your last interview, or discovery meeting with a potential client. Of course, if you’re like most people, you probably pored through your notes or distracted yourself by scrolling through Instagram.
Tim Hurson, author of Never Be Closing, encourages you to consider that being in your clients’ space affords you the best possible opportunity to get to know who you’ll be meeting. Moreover, he argues that their reception and common areas are habitats, filled with clues about the company, its culture and the people you’ll be meeting. Furthermore, he offers some questions you should ask the receptionist or other available employees in the waiting room:
Hurson says that these are the kinds of questions you can work into almost any conversation and which can provide you with useful ways to make connections later in your meeting.
Imagine in your meeting with your prospective client being able to say something like, “I understand you’ve only been in this location for 18 months and you’re already bursting at the seams. Sounds like things are going well. Must be challenging to manage that kind of growth.”. . . Sure, you’ve done research online and with your colleagues, but where better to begin to truly understand the people you’ll meet than where they spend the majority of their working—and waking—lives?
In the end, physically being in space exposes you to information and resources that simply aren’t available in company reports or on the internet. You simply have to be curious (and make friends with the reception desk).