Career Advice by Career Experts J.T. O’Donnell & Dale Dauten : CAREEREALISM


‘JT & Dale Talk Jobs’ is the largest nationally syndicated career advice column in the country and can be found at

Dear J.T. & Dale: I just heard about a great job that might be opening up in my company. Should I wait until it is officially posted to talk to the manager who’ll be doing the hiring? — Dustin

Dale: Pause just long enough to prepare to do it right, and then jump in. Even if they go ahead and interview a lot of people, there is a psychological advantage to being the first or last person to interview for a job — psychologists call it “primacy” and “recency,” the tendency to remember the first and last in a chain. (For example, if you’ve had a lot of bosses, you easily recall the first and the last, right?)

J.T.: As for pausing to prepare, before you meet with the manager, make sure you can answer three questions:

1. Why do you think the job is a great move for the company?

2. How can you save and/or make the company money in the job?

3. How will you hit the job running?

Dale: Notice the theme of J.T.’s questions — it’s not about YOU, but about how you can help the company/manager.

J.T.: That’s how you give the manager reasons to (A) press ahead and create the position and (B) put you at the top of the list to fill it.


Jeanine “J.T.” Tanner O’Donnell is a professional development specialist and the founder of the consulting firm,, and of the blog, Dale Dauten resolves employment and other business disputes as a mediator with

Please visit them at, where you can send questions via e-mail, or write to them in care of King Features Syndicate, 300 W. 57th St, 15th Floor, New York, NY 10019.

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