Why do interviewers question my promotions?

Friday July 12 2019

Caroline Mboijana

Caroline Mboijana 

By Caroline Mboijana

I have attended interviews in which some panel/board members question my rapid promotions. Why would an interviewer get irritated or find fault with me, yet I am not responsible for promoting myself? O.O

Dear OO
I’m not sure the interview panel are not irritated or intentionally finding fault with your rapid promotion, it’s a case of trying to establish that what you’re presenting is accurate.
It’s their role to make sure they have assessed your technical and behavioural competency, as well as verify that what you are sharing is true. I’d like to clarify, you are responsible for your promotion, through a combination of consistent performance and having the right competencies. It’s not enough to say that you were promoted so you don’t need to tell the story of what you did. You need to describe not only the activities that you undertook or led, but also talk about how you thought through and rationalised your decisions.
Furthermore, talk about the impact of what you did. If it resulted in improved performance, describe how. If there was an increase in sales figures, talk about the percentage increase; if it was about an improvement in service delivery, talk about the improved turnaround time from before and after your intervention. If it was about increased customer satisfaction, share some customer service comments or even results from customer service surveys. When you do, share the detail, timelines and even names of the people you worked with. This confirms that you did what you say you did.
Be mindful of your body language. If you’re irritated by the interviewing panel’s continuous questioning, your body will show, you may not notice it, but they will. A good panel will pick up on what you’re not saying verbally and it will contribute and inform their decision making process.

Caroline Mboijana
Managing Director
The Leadership Team (U)