10 Tips to Rock Your Job Interview
January 31, 2017
Congrats! You nailed the phone interview (if you missed our blog article on this, check it out here. Now you’re a serious candidate for the job. You’ve been invited to interview in person, face-to-face with your potential new boss.
First, don’t forget the follow up with a quick thank you note. If there’s anything you wished you had said during the phone interview, but didn’t get a chance to mention, you can include in a thank you letter. (Yes, a nicely worded email will do.) Always try to make your thank you note specific to the conversation you had. Avoid generic phrases and personalize the note so that it reflects the specifics of the interview.
Now, time to prepare for the on-site interview. Follow these 10 job interview tips and you’ll rock it.
1. Get your bearings. Arrive early, within fifteen minutes is ideal, but definitely within five minutes of your scheduled interview time. Look up the directions and the time it would take to travel at your interview time. Print the directions and have them ready on your GPS as well.
2. Plan your outfit. Again, jump on company website. You can also look for clues on social media to see what the dress/culture is. A typical rule is match the dress of the person interviewing you. Dress just a little better than that. Enough to show you care yet you can easily fit in. If you don’t know what that is, just ask. When in doubt a “business professional” look never goes out of style.
3. Leave out the extras. Smell good, but not too good. Go easy on the cologne/perfume or better yet, don’t put it on. You never know how people react to different scents and it’s best not to offend the senses. Have enough water the day before so you are well hydrated and your mouth doesn’t dry out. Make sure your breath is fresh, but ditch the gum. Avoid wearing a lot of jewelry, flashy clothing and no hats.
4. Do your research. Look through the company website for anything that clues you into their values, mission and the kind of work you’ll be doing. Examine the company’s social media accounts to see how it’s being presented and what people are saying about it. Plan how you relate to those big ideas into the work that you will be doing (because you are going to get that job).
5. Prepare to talk about your successes. Write them, say them and practice with a partner. Talk about how you overcame challenges, how you strategized, and how you ultimately came to solutions. Practice answering questions and developing a story to tell for each question you think the interviewer may ask.
6. Bring copies. Bring extra copies of your resume and references. If you have examples of success, bring those too. Bring any information on the position and anything the company has already shared with you. Make sure you know what you have.
7. Be put-together. Clean our your bag, your portfolio, and/or your briefcase. Trim your nails, eyebrows, and have a good clean haircut or style, make sure your outfit is on point and your shoes are polished.
8. Take care. Eat well, sleep well and be ready. Do some mindfulness exercises before you go. Do some stretches to keep the stress low.
9. Plan your posture. Think about your most confident self. What does that look like? It doesn’t have to be a power pose per se, but a confident one for sure. Practice in the mirror, and with what you are going to wear to your interview. Go ahead, strike your pose, vogue.
10. Have your questions ready. Yes, you need to be prepared to answer questions for sure, but have you thought about the questions you are going to ask? Ask about challenges, the culture, what a daily dig is like in the office. Ask what qualities for the position will most help the company (and of course come back with all the ways you fill that need). Being inquisitive shows interest.
Now, you are ready. You’ve got this! Don’t forget to follow up after the interview. Send a note to the interviewer. Think about whether a hand-written or email note is best, either is okay. Before you know it, you’ll have an offer or a second interview.Share this:
Five Tips to Rock Your Telephone Interview
January 26, 2017
So, you’ve made it to the phone interview stage of the job hunt. This means you master creating a resume, and likely worked your network. You’ve got a hiring manager interested in learning more about you. The phone interview is a gateway to the big one, the face-to-face meeting. Nail the phone interview and you’ll take a step closer to landing the job. Our biggest tip, prepare. You’ve got to take time and ensure you’re ready when your phone rings. Here are five tips to rock your next phone interview:
1. Double up. Have all of the basic information at your fingertips: your resume, cover letter, job posting, and job description if you have it. Have it digitally and in an old school paper version. Most of us are more comfortable with using technology, but they could fail. Having a back up ensures there will be no fumbling on the basic questions.
2. Write it down. Take the time to highlight important points you want to hit on, or create a list. Having the most important topics you want to discuss and what is important for them to know about you and your experience in front of you will help you get the information you want as well as present yourself in the best light. You’ll sound organized, clear-minded and like you have been thoughtful about the time you are spending with them on the call.
3. Don’t rush. Make sure you have plenty of time allotted for your call. Don’t try to fit it in on your lunch hour (especially sitting in your car). Take a couple of hours of PTO if needed. Be in a comfortable setting and ready to take all the time you need. The longer the phone call, the better your chances of getting the in-person interview!
4. Be connected. Have Internet access just in case you need to reference the company website, your LinkedIn page, or your calendar. Make sure your Internet access is reliable too. Use your best phone line. If you only have a cell phone, make sure you are physically in the spot that will give you the best reception. Don’t take any chances on losing the call or your momentum. Make sure to turn off all other features on your phone to avoid interruptions.
5. Be your best self. Smile while you are on the phone. It will come through in your discussions. Be confident. Does a certain outfit make you feel good? Wear it. Your confidence will shine through the phone line. Answer the phone professionally and identify yourself when you do. Summarize your understanding as you feel the discussion is wrapping up and push for the face-to-face interview. Be gracious when the call ends and thank them for their time.
The typical phone interview lasts about 15 minutes. Ending can often feel abrupt. There isn’t time to wind down in the elevator or walk to your car. You just hang up and jump back in your own world. Take some time before your phone interview to plan for follow-up. It will help you through the process. Decide how you are going to follow-up, when and what the next job search action is. Being proactive and having a plan will ease the transition. Before you know it, you will have that face time with the company and land the job you want.