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4 guaranteed ways to stand out in your next job interview

Marguerite Ward
Set yourself apart from the competition with these strategies.

Job interviews can be incredibly stressful. There's a lot at stake and only a short amount of time to make your case. Add to that the fact that there are a number of opportunities to make a mistake.

Preparing in advance will help you feel calm and confident, and there are a few strategies you can use that are guaranteed to help you stand out from your competition. Here are four tips from experienced hiring managers and career experts on how to ace your next job interview:

1. Know how to discuss your failures

Most people know how to showcase their talents and achievements. But not as many know how to discuss their failures .

Cynthia Augustine, who serves as the global chief talent officer for the ad agency Foote, Cone & Belding, says you should be prepared to discuss a situation when things didn't go as well as you planned.

"I ask your typical questions but my favorite is, 'Is there something that you worked on or you've done that didn't particularly go your way? If so, what was it and what would you do if you can do it over?'" says Augustine.

Whatever you do, don't say "nothing," she says. That could communicate to the hiring manager that you either didn't prepare for the question, are quick to blame others for failures or are simply dishonest. And don't ramble about your shortcomings, either.

A good response to this question shows how you learned from a mistake or subpar situation and became smarter as a result.


2. Ask questions

According to LinkedIn HR exec Brendan Browne , the biggest mistake people make during a job interview is thinking that the common interview question, "Do you have any questions for me?" is optional.

"If people don't have questions, that's a concern," Browne, LinkedIn's global head of talent, tells CNBC Make It .

When a hiring manager asks this question, it's your chance to show that you've done your research about the company, listened to the hiring manager during the interview and are excited about the opportunity.


3. Be prepared to switch roles

In some cases, a hiring manager will flip the script and ask you to take on his or her role for a portion of the interview.

According to Nicole Wood of the coaching company Ama La Vida, job candidates should be prepared to answer the oddball question, "What questions haven't I asked you yet?"

"This is your opportunity to showcase anything they haven't touched on that you think is important to your story," she tells Glassdoor as part of the site's 50 Most Common Interview Questions series.

The best way to respond to this question is with questions that you can answer with replies that speak to why you want to join the company and what you will contribute.

Wood advises candidates to consider the following questions: "What unique skills do you possess?" or "If hired, what would your 30/60/90 day plan look like?"


4. Show the interviewer that you want the job

If you really want a job, you should tell the hiring manager. That's according to bestselling management author and CNBC contributor Suzy Welch.

When the interview is over, don't just say "thank you" and leave. Before you exit, be sure to say : "I really want this job."

"Coming right out and saying 'I really want this job' shows a refreshing level of sincerity," Welch says. "It always strikes people the right way."

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