Often I hear from my clients that the one area that they feel is holding them back from landing a job is the interview process. They know that their skills and background are solid and they appear to be a perfect match for the position. Overall the face-to-face interview went well, but something just wasn’t clicking. The job either falls into the HR blackhole or they are notified that the position has been filled. Sound familiar? I want to discuss how to interview with confidence and give you some practical take-a-ways.
Before the interview:
- Research. Become as familiar with the company and position as you can ahead of time. The Internet is an excellent source of information. Do you have any LinkedIn connections with the company? Study the job description and match up your skills and accomplishments with the core competencies your future employer is looking for.
- Know your resume. More than likely, the person interviewing you will have a copy of it in front of them, so anticipate questions based upon the contents of your resume. Think of ways you can expand upon what is written and let the interviewer know you are going to be a great employee.
- Tie up any loose ends. Know where and when the interview is. Make sure you have a way there. Do you need a sitter? If so, book one now. Are your interview clothes clean and well fitting? Take care of these details a few days before the interview, not the morning of.
Day of the interview:
- Appearances. Make sure you’re well rested and have had a good meal before heading off to the interview. Take one last look at yourself before you head out the door. You need to look professional and put together. Remember, easy on the fragrances.
- Timing. Arrive early for your interview. If you are kept waiting in the reception area past your interview time, don’t get angry or frustrated-this could be the stress portion of the interview. Be gracious and remember this IS the most important thing you have going on.
- Be enthusiastic! Make eye contact and be friendly. Answer all questions truthfully and don’t try to bluff when you don’t know the answer. They are not only looking for your responses, but how you respond. They’re also judging how well you will fit in with corporate culture.
- Sell yourself. They know you’re qualified, otherwise you wouldn’t have been asked to come in for an interview. But remember, there is a fine line between selling yourself and overkill. Finally, ask for the job. It’s one way that hiring managers determine your enthusiasm for the position.
- Thanks! Thank them for their time. Try to get their business cards or at the very least everyone’s first and last names and positions. Let them know how much you appreciated the interview.
- Snail mail. Write each person a thank you note as soon as you get home and try to get it in the mail on the same day. Yes, e-mails are quicker and easier, but there is nothing like a personal note written in your own handwriting. Offer to follow up in a few days.
- Follow up! Call the interviewer and ask about the status of the position. Use this opportunity to give yourself one last plug!
Still need help? Give the me a call and we can talk about ways to polish your interviewing skills or any other area that you feel you need help with.
As a nationally Credentialed Career Manager, Coach Kevin Tucker has been partnering with individuals like you for the last 25 years. Through the military, as a minister, a human resources executive, and finally as a career and life transition coach; he has continually been able to help motivated individuals find their calling in life! Check out more at www.CoachKevinTucker.com.