Me and My Job Internal & External Career Planning Interview Preparation Show Me the Money Counter-Offers

How Do I Prepare for an Interview?
  • Read company literature distributed by the company, read the web page, and if you're using an agency, get whatever information they have to offer.
  • Find out or make scientific assumptions on what they might be looking for beyond what an ad gives. Study to brush up on those skills.
  • Role-play with friends using typical interview questions.
  • Dress like an attorney. It's better to look too professional, or even more professional than the interviewer. Remember, you don't want to be the worst-dressed of 8 people interviewed.

Probably the most important thing to remember about going on an interview is your goal. The primary goal of an interview is to get the company interested in you enough to make you an offer. Remember, the company is interviewing you, of course you want to evaluate the position, but to have that opportunity you must first beat out the competition. If the company is not interested in you, no matter how much you like them, you can forget about working there. The other important thing to remember, therefore, is that you are (whether you like it or not) in a selling situation and the product is you. So you must learn how to sell yourself, or, if you prefer, present yourself in a way that shows you to be the best person for the job.

Focus on the client's needs.

You need to get them to tell you what they are looking for before they get you to tell them what you are offering. In this way, you can concentrate and emphasize those specifics in your background that are pertinent. To help you in this process, it is reasonable to ask several open-ended questions at the beginning of the interview.


"I know a little bit about your company and the position, but could you give me a little more detail on exactly what you're looking for, what would the ideal person be like, and what did you like about my background?"

By doing this, you should gain valuable insight into what their needs are while you get to sit and relax into the interview.

Managers hire people they like.

Especially if they know they may see you 8 hours a day. Try to be as comfortable and relaxed as you can. Tell yourself, "If I don't get this job, it will be OK anyway." Try to let your true personality come out. Act more like you are at a company Christmas Party chatting with your boss. Be friendly, be yourself. And always ask good questions.

Be confident.

The managers' biggest fear is making a hiring mistake. The more confident you are, and the better you get that across, the less risk the manager takes by making you an offer. You certainly don't want to be cool or arrogant, but you do want to show that you can handle the job. Don't qualify yourself with negatives such as, "well, I've never done that, so I don't know how good I'll be at it." Instead, try "well, I havenít had the opportunity to work with that, but what I have done is learn various technology rather quickly in all my situations, and I'd look forward to an opportunity to enhance my skill by quickly learning this one." And ask, "Is that skill what's needed for this job?" Always ask questions, so you truly understand their needs.

Show interest in the company and the position.

If, by the end of the interview you are absolutely convinced that you're not interested in the job, then by all means be honest and sincere. However, it would be prudent to save your evaluation of the position and company until after you have left the interview. There is usually too much going on during the interview (emotionally and intellectually), especially if you have been selling yourself, to fairly evaluate the position. The best thing to do during the interview is to look and listen for things that you like about the company or the position and let the interviewer hear what you think. Also, you should show interested body language: never fold your arms. Sit up straight, lean forward if comfortable and use eye contact and affirming head shakes to show when you are interested and that you are actively listening.

In Summary

1. Ask questions early so you can focus on their needs
2. Be yourself, be well liked, relax
3. Be as confident as you can
4. Show an interest in the position and the company.

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