Because I have passed, and even failed more candidates than anyone that I know personally. I have failed 97% of candidates I have interviewed. That’s more than 77,600 people. By the way, this number was back in 2017, so its actually a lot more by now. More recently, I have passed just 1 candidate out of 67 applicants whom I have screened for attitude, values and character, so that’s 1.4% and my client interviewed one and hired one. Not pretty for candidates. But hey, I am in the business of providing the top 1%, 100% of the time.

Unfortunately, none of the other recent 66 have reached out to be coached on how they can do better.

Interviewee Playbook for Serious Candidates

These are the top 10% of 2.500 applicants per day. And only 25 will be selected as the top 1%.


95% on the low side.

100% on the high side.

That’s why I coined the term “One Shot One Kill” in Hiring. I know what will make my clients happy with the right candidate for them.

Interviewee Playbook for Serious Candidates

One Shot One Kill. That’s the track record we continue to pride ourselves with 100% Hit Rate


Well, there’s a ton of reasons (that’s another newsletter). But fundamentally, it boils down to this:

The blindspots that candidates didn’t know they have and it’s obvious to very well seasoned HR & Talent Acquisition experts except themselves. That’s why its called BLINDSPOTS.

These blindspots send the wrong signals to the interviewer and an experienced interviewer can smell a rat from miles away.

Here is the best part: THEY WILL NEVER TELL YOU WHY.

So it is a double whammy!


Firstly, it is most important to know yourself very well. I mean self aware in the nirvana sense of the word. Perfect harmony, happiness and freedom.

Here is the litmus test: Are you fully congruent in all of your thoughts, emotions and actions?

For 99% of the world, this is unlikely to be the case.

That’s why there are blindspots.

Identifying Blindspots is needed to score at the next interview


It’s another to have to keep fighting after being headhunted and employed. Simply because stress levels are extremely high when you are not operating from being your natural, innate self.


There are a very few serious questions one must master in order to determine what is the right job or careers for them:

#1. What is your natural talent? How do you know what your talents are? Your stress levels are minimised or optimised when operating from your natural talent, so this is a key aspect to master.

#2 What are your strength? How do you know they are your strength? How do you measure if they are indeed your strength?

#3 What are your passion? What is the difference between interest and passion? How do you differentiate if this is perpetual or transient? How do you discover them without external influence or bias?

#4 What are your blindspots that repeatedly sabotage you, without you even knowing? How do they get in the way of your plans for success? What is the source of these blindspots and how do you get to the source to resolve it once and for all?

#5 What skills are you lacking that you’d need time to learn? What financial resources do you need in order to learn these skills in a timely manner? What is your formula for financial planning to make these learning happen? How do you know the financial planning is sound?

#6 How do you overcome fear? Self doubt? Negative mindset? Self fulfilling prophecy?

#7 When should you quit from your current job? Is there a roadmap for quitting and if yes, what milestones determine the time to leave? What does your resume say about your strategic life plan?

#8 How do you present your resume that interviewers will want to interview you? What should the format look like? How do you word your resume so that it stands out from the rest?

#9 What is your long term plan to avoid the rat race? How much stress can you take before your body gives up? How do you avoid that?

#10 What is your strategy to be headhunted? Or start your own business or consultancy as an independent contributor? How do you manage people to help you grow?

#11 Do you know your personal relationships are just as important as your professional relationships? The two of them goes hand-in-hand to bring out the best in you.

#12 What are your innate values that your operate from? How do you know what drives you, motivates you, helps you make decisions? What irritates you, makes you angry, contradicts your values or drives your stress levels sky high?

#13 How do you know your personal values truly align with the organisations you are going to work at? How do you ask questions to validate this fit or misfit?

#14 Have you ever interviewed the interviewer? How can this be done in any interview so that you know just as much about the culture of the company as the interviewer needs to know you?

#15 Should you take the job and why? How many jobs should you have in your lifetime? Should you move between industries or just remain? How does all these come together with your passion, vision, talents and strengths that ultimately reduces your stress levels and lead a happier, more balanced life?

#16 What is the strategic plan about your career paths that naturally becomes a story worth telling? Your life and your career is a story that needs to be told effortlessly.

#17 How can you work to retire early? What does retirement really mean to you?

The better candidates are at articulating these points above, the better and clearer they’ll be in front of interviewers. The easier it will be for interviewers to understand them, without bias.

Getting clarity about all these require work. And it can be accelerated by engaging an Executive Coach to zero in on any potential blindspots and personal issues impeding your professional and personal growth.


Top performer in any industry always has a coach, rather than a mentor. There is a HUGE difference between the two.

A mentor helps you walk the path he/she has walked before. So it can be sometimes limited.

A coach helps you walk a new path no one else has walked before except you.

There are generally at least 3 types of coaches you’d need in your life time:

#1 Executive Coach

#2 Life Coach

#3 Fitness or Wellness Coach

An executive coach who is well versed in personal relationships management can help as a Life Coach, but not necessarily the other way round. Of course, Fitness or Wellness Coach is a specialty in itself.

The earlier you start Executive Coaching, the more time you’d have in your life to reach your personal goals.

I started my Executive Coaching journey 20 years ago with this article on the Front Page of Asian Wall Street Journal at age 34.

And it has accelerated my early semi-retirement by choice at age 45.


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