What if there where a way to hypnotize HR people into hiring you?

Although it sounds like the stuff of movies, you really can influence the job interviewer’s subconscious mind to hire you, or at least move your resume to the top of the stack.

How do you do this?

There are three steps.

You begin by creating instant rapport with the HR person.

You then learn what is important to them on a deep emotional level.

You use this information to help them decide who the best candidate is.

That’s you, of course.


With rapport, everything is possible. Without it, nothing is possible.

So what is rapport? It is a feeling of being in sync with another person.

Usually people try to create rapport by throwing spaghetti on the wall to see what sticks.

They talk about sports, a hit TV show or the weather, hoping to find something in common. This is hit or miss.

Although we all seek some form of kinship, some HR people feel they should not have rapport with the people they interview.

That doesn’t matter. You will create rapport without them knowing it.

You can reliably create rapport by physically acting like the HR person.

If she exec leans to the left side of her chair and crosses her arms, you lean to the right side of your chair and cross you arms.

This is called mirroring.

You can also lean to the left side of your chair and cross your arms. This called matching.

Either way, mirroring and matching are quick ways to create rapport, because on a subconscious level, she’s thinking: “he’s just like me.”

And people respond positively to others who are like them.

You can also create rapport by matching someone’s way of speaking. If he machine guns words like a fast-talking New Yorker, you do the same. If he speaks more slowly and softly, slow down and soften your voice.

A word of warning: when someone shifts their body position or changes they way they speak, wait four to five seconds and then gradually change.

If you mirror and match too quickly, you will appear to be mocking the other person, which could be offensive.


Despite what we like to tell ourselves, we do things for emotional reasons, not logical ones.

Our values move us through the world.

In a work context, one HR person may value the sense of doing a good job while another simply wants to get the boss off his back. Uncovering and reflecting back someone’s deepest values (in a work context) will make them want to hire you.

For them to do otherwise would be to go against the very fiber of their being.


Once the formal part of the interview is concluded, the HR person will usually ask you if you have any questions.

This is the point at which you mine for information.

Will she make the decision or pass on a recommendation?

Does he have to interview a specific number of applicants or can he stop when he feel’s he’s found the right person?

This information is critical because you are going to feed it back to them later one.

The next step will only work if you have established rapport.

You can test rapport by purposely breaking it. Shift your body to another position, if she does the same, you’ve established rapport. If she doesn’t shift to match you, go back to the former position and try to mirror and match her more exactly.

You can refine the process by matching such things as accents or the rhythm of someone’s speech, the highs and lows.

One of the most powerful ways to create rapport is to breath at the same rate as the other person.

Once you have tweaked your techniques, test rapport again.

Again, make these changes gradually.

Once you know you have rapport, you can take the conversation to a higher, and more intimate level.

You want to learn the HR person’s values.

You might say something to the effect of: “I’m curious. I’m sure you have interviewed a lot of very qualified people and had times when you knew this person was right for the job. You may have been sitting in this very chair. When you find this person and think this person, not that person, what important to you about that?”

It is critical to ask what is important, not why is that important.

If you ask someone why they can get defensive and then decide to come up with lots of reasons why. You don’t want that.

So back your question.

A very typical response will probably have to do with the company line. They may say they want the most experienced candidate or the one who fits their culture.

Whatever they say, your job is to listen very attentively and agree with them.

You might say, “I absolutely agree that (company line) is important and what I’m wondering is, when you are able to pick this person who is right for the job, what does that give you?

You have started to take the HR person away from the company line and are moving toward communication on a more personal level.

At this point, the interviewer will say something such as “finding the right person gives me a sense of satisfaction.”

Or, “it gets the boss of my back.”

Regardless of what they say, you agree with them and acknowledge it and in some way try to repeat and reemphasize what they just said.

You might say, “I understand how important it is to have a sense of satisfaction (boss off your back, etc.) What would that give you that’s even more important?”

You are now probably going to a much higher value of the HR person. They might respond that get will have a “feeling of personal satisfaction” or a “sense of relief.”

Once again, feed back the response, at least one or two more times, asking what will that (deeper value) give them.

Somewhere between the third and fifth level of values, you will see a physical change in their demeanor.

He may sit back and smile. His face may light up.

You have discovered his highest value in hiring someone.

You have just struck gold.

It’s time to demonstrate how you, and you alone, will fulfill that value.


Lets’ say that our HR exec has revealed that her highest value is a sense of contributing to the organization.

This would be a great time to hand her your resume as you say something such as, “What I’d like you to think about is contributing to the organization and how much I can contribute to it to.”

Another step you can take to seal the deal is to inoculate the exec from thinking that anyone else could possibly qualify for the position.

You might say: “I was taking to a friend of mine who hires people for jobs that are similar to the openings you have and he was telling me that when you find someone that really does demonstrate an ability to contribute, he really does stick in your mind and everyone else’s. Other applicants may seem to say the right things. They may try in vain to impress you, but I know that you are not going to be impressed by that. You know who the right person for the job is.”

You can also add your understanding of the process and reaffirm it.

“I realize that you have to interview 25 applicants before you make your decision. But I think you already know that is now just a formality that you must go through.”

Or, “I realize that you are required to choose five candidates to pass on to your boss. I think we both know who’s resume will go on top. Don’t we? It’s someone who will contribute in a meaningful way.”

It will be almost impossible for the HR exec to seriously recommend anyone else.

These techniques are not a substitute for being genuinely qualified for the job. And you must polish your other interview skills. Those you can find in any good job search book.

But if you add in rapport, learning someone’s values and then feeding those value back to them, you can have a powerful impact on the HR exec.

Finally, you must practice these skills before attempting to use them during an interview. Try them out on people you know. Try them out on people you don’t know.

Once you feel that you have mastered these techniques, you can walk into the interview knowing who’s really in charge.

You can get that job, or have your resume magically move to the top.

Author's Bio: 

David R. Barron and Danek S. Kaus are the authors of the new book, “Power Persuasion: Using Hypnotic Influence to Win in Life, Love and Business.” For information, visit www.power-persuasion/book.