4 Powerful Attributes You Can Use Now
2-½ minutes to read
Parsha [Passage of Scripture] Nugget [Precious Idea] Mikeitz – Genesis 41:1-44:17
Your palms sweat. Your shirt collar feels tights. You fumble for the right words. Before your know it, the interviewer has thanked you for coming in and you’re out the door. Then the recriminations begin. “If only I’d answered that first question better.” “I should have mentioned that project I did where the CO gave my unit a Bravo Zulu (well done).” Job interviews create an enormous amount of anxiety. Joseph’s rise to Prime Minister in Parshas Mikeitz shows a better way to handle them:
“And Pharaoh said to Joseph, ‘after G-d made known to you all of this, there is no one discerning and wise like you. You will be over my house…’”(Beresheis/Genesis 41:39-40)
In this week’s parsha Joseph interpreted Pharaoh’s dream and became Viceroy of Egypt. Next, a famine began, resulting in Jacob sending ten of his sons to Egypt to buy food. Joseph knew he must fulfill the prophecy that his brothers would bow down to him. He demanded they bring Benjamin to Egypt. At first, Jacob would not consent but the lack of food became so severe he had no choice. Once they were all there, Joseph endeavored to find out if his brothers’ attitude had truly changed.
From Slave to Prime Minister in One Meeting
With just one conversation the slave Joseph, a prisoner, became Prime Minister of Egypt.
Unsurprisingly, ex-convicts have a hard time finding work, especially for jobs requiring a high degree of trust. Yet the absolute ruler of Egypt promoted Joseph to the number two position of power after just one interview. Granted Pharaoh acknowledged his wisdom and discernment. But how could he have had such confidence in Joseph?
I’ve called it a job interview, but I doubt Joseph looked at it that way. Though he acted with respect, the meeting was between two equals. Pharaoh ruled the most powerful nation on Earth. And even though he’d been in prison for two years, Joseph stood as a prince of the Almighty. He could have felt inferior. But Joseph acted with self-confidence.
Before interpreting Pharaoh’s dreams Joseph acknowledged his own lack of power. He attributed his gift to G-d. From this minor point, Pharaoh extrapolated Joseph’s total integrity. Joseph was modest but honest.
In the previous parsha, Joseph dreamed his brothers and parents would bow down to him. He didn’t hesitate to share this vision with his family. True to character, for the bad tidings in Pharaoh’s dreams, Joseph boldly offered his solution. Pharaoh rewarded his authenticity by appointing him Prime Minister.
How to Have an Amazing Job Interview
I’ve written before that you should not go on job interviews. The interview frame of reference casts you in the role of a beggar. The employer has all the power. You seem to have no control over the outcome. You cannot perform well under this scenario.
When meeting with the hiring manager, you should adopt Joseph’s example. Be:
- Self-confident. A private sector employer will be fortunate to have your military experience put to work for him
- Honest. You have skills, abilities, and experience. Don’t hesitate to show your Unique Value Proposition.
- Modest. People like to know that you’ll give credit where it’s due, whether to them or a military colleague.
- Authentic. Avoid arrogance and exaggeration. Be professional. Don’t be afraid to let the real you show.
Model Joseph’s attitude and behavior when you meet with a hiring manager. The same formula that made him Prime Minister will land you a high-paying job.
Question – What makes you nervous when meeting to discuss a job?
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Every year beginning on Simchas Torah, the cycle of reading the Torah, the first five books of the Bible, ends and begins again. Each Sabbath a portion known as a sedra or parsha is read. It is named after the first significant word or two with which this weekly reading begins.
What verse in the Old Testament would you like to know more about? Ask a question and I will answer it in a future Parsha Nugget!