Successful companies hold on to an important business concept which is "keep growing intelligently".
What that means to a job applicant is that growing companies want to expand into new markets. They decided that they want to offer their goods and services in other regions and countries. It may also be that they decided to obtain goods and services from foreign markets to help them remain competitive and survive in this ever-changing global economy.
Business leaders direct their HR departments to hire persons that can help bridge and communicate with new contacts in foreign lands. Consequently, HR are searching for individuals who have experience familiarizing themselves with other societies and cultures.
Let me explain my point further by listening in at two job applications. One was a regular good student in college we will call Juan. The other person we will call her Lupe who was also a good student and has traveled abroad. Let's listen in on two job interviews and see how each one responds and who may be the best candidate.
How good are your writing and verbal communication skills?
Juan's response; "They are very good. I received good grades on my research papers and I constantly communicated with my instructors and my friends."
Lupe response (who is in another room with a different HR interviewer); "They are very good. I received good grades and I constantly communicated with my instructors and my friends.
I would like to add that I also maintain communication with new friends that I made through my travels to...... I quickly realized that they couldn't always write or communicate clearly in English so I am starting to learn their language. I want to maintain the friendship. I am also interested in visiting new countries to make new friends and thus I am taking special workshops to speak other languages."
Do you get along well with people?
Juan's response; "Absolutely, I do get along. As I mentioned before, I have many friends and we get together quite often. We really like and understand each other."
(Side note - never say that you have 500 Facebook friends and that it proves that you get along with many persons! This is no joke. I have actually heard persons say this.)
Lupe's response; "Well, yes and no. Through my time on campus and my travels, both locally and abroad, I realize that persons I meet are not always tolerant of foreigners like myself. At times, I may have said something in a wrong way or made gestures that made our interaction difficult. I am now dedicating more time to learn about people and their cultures so that I minimize the barriers that could hamper our interaction. In general, wherever I go, I greet everyone that I meet in a friendly manner and I am clearly aware that not everyone will respond in kind. I don't need to belittle them. I simply respect their behavior and move on."
If we hire you, how will you help make this company more successful?
Juan's response; "I will work very hard, follow directions and do my job to the best of my ability."
Lupe's response; "I will work very hard, follow directions and do my job to the best of my ability.
"Additionally, I would be interested in learning about your opportunities for me to work in your foreign offices. I am interested in working with your clients in other parts of the world. I like meeting new people and facing new challenges. I like to travel and I look forward to someday, very soon, to join a team in the company and represent the company in other lands to create new business opportunities."
Who do you think got hired? Keep in mind that both were good students.