By Chris Gandy
Every so often someone writes a piece on over-used words. Over recent years most pundits zero in on the 3 A’s – Absolutely, Awesome and Amazing.
In my world, another word that completely blitzes these in the “over-use” stakes, especially during job interviews, is Passionate!
Seems today everyone is passionate about the job they are applying for. So much so that I am convinced someone has published a Candidate’s Guide to Successful Job Interviews handbook which decrees:
“Rule #1 – Tell the interview panel that you are passionate about whatever the organisation does”
So many people I can across in the not for profit sector tell me they are passionate about working with people with disabilities, housing the homeless, feeding the hungry, saving the whales – you name a cause and there are legions of passionate people to help! The future of the sector is in good hands, the pipeline of passionate talent appears to be endless.
Of course this isn’t the case. Most people are interested in helping a cause and commit to a high level of involvement. Very few are “compelled by, or ruled by an intense emotion or feeling” – the true meaning of passionate. These are the rare people with a fierce fire in the belly who’s lives are completely dictated by a burning desire.
I know a women who only wears clothes that have her football teams colours; attends every match during the season no matter where it is played; and is almost comatose for days if her team is beaten – that is being passionate.
Lets not devalue the truly passionate people by falsely claiming to be one of them. When applying for a job tell the interview panel how your great skills and relevant experience will make a difference and take the organisation’s social impact to even higher levels. You don’t necessarily need to be passionate to do that.
Chris is the founder and a Director of Cause & Effective. Our mission is to strengthen the leadership and capacity of cause-based organisations.