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Leaving an impact: Preparing for the final interview

You’ve had the interview with the executive search consultant, you’ve met with the Human Relations team and your potential new boss, and maybe even your prospective peers. You’re almost at the finish line!

But there’s one final hurdle to tackle: the interview with your manager’s boss. This is usually the last interview in the hiring process and in a way, it’s the most important one. 

There’s no doubt these kinds of interviews can be intimidating. If, for example, you’re going for a direct report as one of the C-Suite executives reporting into the CEO, your boss’s boss might be the chair of the company.

So, how do you excel in the interview with your boss’s boss? Executive Interview Coaching founder Richard Elstone offers some tips.

Tip #1: Don’t assume you’ve got the position

Richard says whatever you do, don’t treat the meeting with your boss’s boss like a rubber stamp. 

You still need to prepare for the interview and assure your manager’s boss that you are the right person for the job.

“A lot of people make the mistake of thinking that this is just a ticking-the-box type of scenario and it’s certainly not,” says Richard.

“It’s a really important interview. Don’t forget that your new boss is really putting their neck on the line by recommending you for this job, so you can’t let them down.”

Tip #2: Be ready to sell yourself - again

“The thing to consider in this type of interview is what will they be most interested to find out about you?” says Richard.

“Whatever has got you to this point in the interview process, you need to keep doing that right up until the final interview.”

Richard says showcasing your storytelling abilities should be your priority.

“You should be ready to answer the question, ‘so why should we hire you’ or ‘tell me about yourself’,” he says.

“You may have already said it six times during the interview process, but be ready to say it again to your boss’s boss.”

Tip #3: Convince them you will hit the ground running

Your boss’s boss wants to know you’re not going to make your boss’s job – and therefore theirs – any harder than it currently is.

“An executive is going to have between six and eight direct reports and it’s tough to manage those,” says Richard.

“They don’t want someone who needs to be hand-held. It’s certainly not something that the big boss will approve of in terms of a new hire.”

Remember to prepare answers around how you’ve made your previous manager’s job easier.

“Come up with actual examples about how you’ve improved efficiency and/or productivity for your previous bosses.”

Tip #4: Get expert advice beforehand

Interviewing with your boss’s boss can be daunting, but with the right preparation, you will feel confident going into the interview. That’s where Executive Interview Coaching can help.

“They say there’s no such thing as bad weather, it’s poor choice of clothing. It’s the same thing here,” says Richard.

“If you’re nervous before an interview, it’s usually because you haven’t prepared properly.

“Our job is to make sure that you’re not nervous at the interview, so that you perform at your best in every sort of interview situation, whether that’s talking to the executive search consultant, at the meet and greet interviews or with the boss’s boss.”

Get in touch today

Our Interview Ready program will equip you with the skills, techniques and insider knowledge to excel in answering tough executive interview questions. 

With our program, you'll gain the confidence to nail every interview and land your dream job.

To find out more, get in touch today.


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