Interview questions primarily test your understanding of two things: the role you are interviewing for and the company you intend to work with. ‘How can you describe our company’ is a question that digs into your prior research about the company.
According to Wanjiru Chabeda, Account Manager at Corporate Staffing Services, this is a question that highly determines whether you get hired or flop in the interview, depending on whether or not you did research about the company.
“In my work as a recruiter, I have come across candidates who walk into the interview room without the slightest knowledge of what their prospective employer does. There is no way you can prove your interest to work with a company whose website you have never taken time to view,” Ms Chabeda says.
She adds that when confronted with such a question, what the recruiter simply wants to get from you is whether or not you understand the company’s vision and goals to determine if you are the best fit for the vacant position.
So when in an interview scenario and faced with this question, employ the tips below to help you answer the question; ‘How can you describe our company.’
Tips To Answer ‘How Can You Describe Our Company?’
First, understand that this question can also be posed in different ways. The other ways that point to the same question include ‘What do you know about us?’ and ‘Why do you want to work with us?’
Whichever way the question is posed, the catch is simple. Do you understand the company’s ways of doing things? Dou you know the space they operate in? Do you know their previous achievements? Their goals? And most importantly, are you the right fit? To answer the question correctly, you need to do the following;
1. Do research
It must be a thorough research that leaves no stone untouched. To understand more about the things to research about the company, read this article.
If you are interviewing for a sales position for instance, ensure that you are armed with ready information on the company’s line of products, their customers and most importantly their competitors. Have ready figures of the company’s profits in the last financial year and bank on them as you give your answer.
“Company ABC is the leading telecommunication firm in the region and having realised increased profits of 20%, it maintained the first position ahead of company XYZ for the third consecutive year.”
2. Give unique answers
Every recruiter knows that information is readily available on the internet and any candidate can easily access it and use it in the interview room. To ensure that you stand out, arm yourself with unique answers to respond to the question.
How do you think the interviewer will react when they find out that you know the company director’s name? How about if you talked a little about what goes on in the department you are specifically interviewing for?
The trick is simple. Follow the company’s social media, especially LinkedIn. In this way, you can be sure to know a couple of names within the company’s management and a little more of what happens within the company.
Unique answers are a sure way to make you stand out in a job interview. This article provides you with easy ways to make you stand out among fellow candidates.
3. Give honest but fair answers
Ms Chabeda says that even if the company has been in the news for all the bad reasons, you need to do it a small favour- be fair.
“If you really want the job, you definitely will not go about describing the company for all the bad reasons you can lay your hands on. Try to be positive about the company even when you know that a few things are not going well within the company’s circles,” Ms Chabeda establishes.
The following is a typical answer that shows even though a company has been infamous for firing their staff in the recent past, there is something positive in it.
“XYZ is the first company to embrace the latest money technology and even though this has led to it cutting on their staff, embracing technology is a bold move that will realize increased yields in the long run.”
4. Ask to know more
This is a smart way to nail it in the interview. Apart from proving your prior research about the company, it will even be better if you can demonstrate your immense interest to work with the company. This is an indirect way to ask to know more about the company;
“On your website, you have scheduled the unveiling of a product geared to improve money service to the middle class. As your ardent customer, I can’t wait to learn how you intend to do so.”
The above tactic does not however extend to you asking about stuff that you can easily find elsewhere. Do not for instance make a mistake of asking the recruiter the name of a prospective departmental head.
To find out more on the questions you can ask the recruiter in the interview room