A lot of job hunting advice tells you to always end the interview by asking for the job.
Which leads many job hunters to ask, "How exactly do you ask for a job?"
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Great question. You'll find 10 sample approaches below. But first, here are two major points to keep in mind:
1. When you’re job hunting, you’re not begging for a handout. You are legitimately offering your skills, experience, time, and energy in exchange for legitimate employment.
2. Many hiring managers like hearing you say you want the job. It shows eagerness, honesty, and enthusiasm. And it’s flattering.
True, it can be a tough question to ask. We fear the answer will be "No." We may feel it’s impolite, or too forward, to ask such a direct question. Or we may just be shy.
Of course, you do not want to be someone you’re not, or come off as arrogant, obnoxious, or desperate. What you want to do is make the interview a friendly conversation between peers. How? By searching for common ground and adopting the tone of working together toward a common goal (in this case, solving the problems that have led this company to seek to hire). The better you get to know your interviewer, the easier it’ll be to find the right words to “ask for the job.”
To get you started, here are 10 variations on the theme of “how to ask for the job.” They all say more or less the same thing. Give them a read and see if one of them sounds a little bit like you. Try it out, change it, make it yours, memorize it if you have to, and then say it at the end of your next job interview. Good luck.
1. “I think I could do a lot for your company and that we could work well together. Have I given you all the information you need to offer me the job?”
2. Summarize your qualifications and then say, “That’s why I think I’d be a good fit for this position. Is there anything I haven’t covered?”
3. “I’m certain this is the job I want. What can I do to convince you that I’m the right person for this position?”
4. “I’m very interested in this job. Is there anything preventing you from offering me the job right now?”
5. “I am truly interested in the job. What is the next step for consideration? When will you be making a decision? Are there any questions I have left unanswered?”
6. “I feel my background and skills are a good fit for this position, and I’m very interested. What is the next step?”
7. “I am really interested in this job and working with your team. Do you have any more questions for me?”
8. “This job sounds perfect for my skills and experience. I’d really like to work with you and your team.”
9. “I would love to work for your company. I think I have a lot to offer, such as 'x' and 'y'. What is the next step in the hiring process?”
10. “After what I’ve learned about you and your company, I’m confident I’d be a good fit. I hope to hear from you soon.”
Last thought: This should go without saying but here it is anyway: You should only “ask for the job” if this is a job you’re sure you want, and are prepared to accept right on the spot. (As always, be sincere, be enthusiastic, be courteous, be honest, and be yourself.)
Karen Burns is the author of the illustrated career advice book The Amazing Adventures of Working Girl: Real-Life Career Advice You Can Actually Use, recently released by Running Press. She blogs at www.karenburnsworkinggirl.com.