Successful job interviews is the normal outcome of preparation

Congratulations! It’s been a long few days, maybe weeks or possibly months looking for the right job, and now you have received the call to come in for an interview. Then comes the question, what now? In a short time span of about 20 minutes you will have to talk about your experiences, your attitude, and your most important skills to a potential employer-without really knowing what they want to hear from you. There are so many articles available offering advice on everything from how to dress to answering certain questions. At times it can be very overwhelming, but remembering a few key points can make your interview a success.

Research

Do some research. Find as much information on the company that you are interviewing with. This may involve checking the company website, or possibly visiting the location of the company, especially if it is a public facility like a store. Another good idea is finding an insider. Someone who works or has worked for the company and knows general information about the position to which you are applying. Key things you will want to know are the kinds of products and services the company offers. What are the typical working hours? What are some of the day to day things are involved with the position.

Be sure to make notes about information that you will want to know, and ask at the end of the interview. Researching a company and the position to which you are applying, will show your interest in working for them, and your attention to detail. Always remember, you can never have too much information.

Practice

This may sound like a strange thing to do, but it works. By practicing your responses to questions that may come up in the interview will make you sound more accurate, and confident. This will help ease some of the nervousness and stress of the interview. You will want to make a list of a few important things that you want the employer to know about yourself. Try to formulate answers to questions that you might be asked in the interview and practice them. Some individuals even practice these answers in front of a mirror. Doing this will make you more confident and polished, and prevent you from rambling.

Dressing to Make a Lasting Impression

One of the key aspects to a good interview is your first impression. First impressions can make or break an interview. The best way to ensure a good first impression is to dress smart. Take in to consideration the position that you are applying for. If you are interviewing for a office position, wear a dark colored conservative suit (this is appropriate for both men and women). If the position calls for a more casual dress code, be sure to wear nice slacks and a button down shirt, and for the ladies wear a nice dress or blouse and slacks. Be sure to keep the jewelry and perfume to a minimum. Lastly remember that good hygiene is very important.

If you are really not sure what to wear, always go with the most conservative, professional attire.

Most experts agree that it is better to be overdressed than dressed too casually. What you are wearing tells employers a lot about how serious you are about getting the job.

Be Conscious of Proper Interview Etiquette

There are many dos and don’ts for an interview-and not everyone agrees on each one that would be on that list. There are some that are basic interview etiquette tips that are very important to remember.

  1. Be on time for your interview. Remember earlier when we talked about first impressions. This one is the most important. When employers expect employees to be on time, showing up late for an interview does not show that you could be trusted to arrive on time every day if hired.
  2. Be aware of your nonverbal body language. Always remember to give a good firm hand shake. Make sure you have good posture, but avoid appearing stiff and rigid. Interviews can be stressful, however if you appear nervous, this could lead the interviewer to the incorrect conclusions about your abilities to perform the job. Another important thing to remember is to not slouch. Some experts say that slouching gives off the impression that a person is lazy and not interested in the position. Also make
    good eye contact with the individual you are talking to. This indicates confidence. Lastly keep in mind that you should always be polite and speak professionally. Remember the more confident and polished you appear the more likely you are to leave the interviewer with a positive impression of you.
  3. Keep a positive attitude. Avoid negative comments about previous jobs or employers that you may have in the past. Also, try to keep from complaining about job-related tasks or responsibilities you were given in previous positions. Remember that employers want to hire people who are positive enthusiastic and are able to meet and deal with the situations that come up in there day to day jobs.

Be Sure to Ask Questions

This is where all your hard work in researching the company pays off. Employers want to know  that you are truly interested in the position. The employer also wants to know that you have all the information at your disposal to make the appropriate decision as to whether you should take the position. Never interview the interviewer. But it is always a good idea to go into the interview with a few prepared questions to ask. This is your chance to ask additional questions about the business, the position, the requirements, and the expectations of the person who will fill the position.

Follow up with a Thank-You Note

Make sure you let the interviewer know how pleased you were to have the chance to interview with him or her. Immediately after the interview, send the interviewer a thank-you note, thanking him or her for taking time to interview you. This is not only proper etiquette and a common display of appreciation, but it also allows you to reaffirm one or two key points of the interview.


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