Interview Tips

So, you’ve made it past the initial phone screen and now you are being asked to come in for an interview. How do you get prepared?

Relax. Smile. Be Confident.

Remember, part of the interview process is for you to interview the company. Will you like working here? Will it be a good move for your career?

True, some will tell you that an interview is, at least at first, one-sided. The company holds the power of offering you the job or not offering you the job.

So, first things first – make the right impression and let them see how great you really are. Relax and be yourself. You may be nervous, but you should be confident in yourself and confident in what you have to offer.

Come prepared with everything you need:

  • Research the company ahead of time by reading press articles, their website and Wikipedia page
  • Review the job listing and check how your experience matches up – where it doesn’t, think about how you would close the gap as you get up to speed in the new role
  • Review the companies competition – understand where the company has strengths and weaknesses
  • Wear the right attire – if in doubt, error on the formal side
  • Be punctual – 10 minutes early is best
  • Bring extra copies of your resume
  • Have a list of questions prepared for when it’s your turn to drive the conversation
  • During the interview, watch for your non-verbal posture and facial expressions – deliver the right message even when you are not speaking

When the interview is over, make sure to thank the interviewer for their time and express your interest in the position again. Make sure you understand the “next steps” in the process.

As you move forward at this point, they will be moving in “corporate time” and that can be discouraging as you will be in “human time”. Be patient and make sure you reach back out in line with the time table they outlined in the “next steps” section.

The next day, be sure to send a follow up email. Again express your interest in the position and include a few key points about how your background and experience is a strong fit for the role.

Speak to how you fit in their corporate culture – after all, they assumed that you had the skill set, that’s why they invited you in for an interview. What they needed to know at this point is “are you the right person?”

Odds are that you will not get every job that you interview for – nor should you. Not every job is right for you and for your career path. If, by chance, you do not receive the job offer for your dream job, just . . . Relax. Smile. Be Confident.

So what do you do next?  It’s simple, go get your next interview lined up!