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yourself for a Job Interview
you should do before you go there and, how you should
conduct yourself during the Interview.
Interview Process and how you can succeed in it!
first hurdle to get a job is having the right skills, the right
resume, and the right
cover letter for the job on
offer. If you have mastered that and are called for an
interview, you are half way to having the job. But, only
half way...now comes the important interview!
preparation, before going to an interview is to find
out as much as you can, about the company or institution
you are intending to join. Look at their web site, ask
friends, obtain information from any source, as early as
possible in the process.
to an interview prepared and able to demonstrate
at least a basic understanding of the
employers business, you show that you are
actively interested in that particular employer,
rather than simply seeking a job anywhere. Prepare
your questions in advance about the
specific job you have applied for and
also, about the company in general. The idea is
to demonstrate your interest and
knowledge in the employer
and the job.
should remember that, some candidates look
fantastic on paper, but are disappointing in the
Other people have a natural talent for
being interviewed. To some extent, interviewing is a
learned skill. To help you a little, we have
prepared ten tips to help you show your best
side, as you are being interviewed.
Ten Tips to
Master your Interview
the industry and the company beforehand.
Use every resource to your advantage:
fellow students, professors, career-center
resources, informational interviews with alumni
of your school, the companys recruitment
literature and Web site, Wet Feets
Insider Guides, and databases and Web
sites such as LexisNexis and the U.S.
Business Browser (usually available in
libraries). There are many other
directories for specialized industries.
what youre looking for and why you are in
the interview. What are your
values, interests, preferences? What kinds of
roles and responsibilities are stimulating to
you? What are your top five criteria for
choosing an employer or accepting an offer?
Thinking through these issues will keep you
focused in your interviews and keep you
from wasting time.
what you have to offer, educationally, in terms
of experience and as a person.
What makes you unique? What are your points of
difference? Understand how these make you a good
fit for the opportunity the employer is offering,
so you can make it clear to the interviewer that
you are a good fit.
you go to the interview think of questions they
might ask and anticipate the questions.
Think about the main points you would emphasize
for each potential question you can imagine the
interviewer asking. Prepare how you would
handle any illegal, unfair, or politically
incorrect questions in a firm but graceful
manner. And remember: If its on your
resume, its fair game.
an interview, learn from it and then refine and
practice again. Participate in mock
interviews if you can or practice on your
own. Ask for honest feedback from friends
and acquaintances and work to improve.
on time, enthusiastic and
professional. When in doubt, dress
more formally (most of the time, a suit and tie
for men, a pantsuit or jacket and skirt for
women). Bring extra copies of your resume,
just in case. Introduce yourself, give a firm
handshake and make eye contact
when you introduce yourself. Show
enthusiasm related to the
interviewers. Close the interview
with a handshake and a genuine "thank
questions for each interview examples
might include: Can you give me some examples of
what kinds of roles a financial analyst (or other
employee, as appropriate for the position you
apply) has, at the company, after two or five
years? A set of questions is shown below!
about next steps and the timing of the recruiting
process. If you think youll
be invited for a second-round, this will allow
you to note it on your calendar, so you can
up with a written thank-you note. Do
not use an e-mail for that. It does not have to
be handwritten, but receiving any thank you note
can be a breath of fresh air. Dont
use fancy, personalized stationary a simple
note-card or nice paper will do.
each interview, review your performance.
Keep learning and improving as you go to
interviews. Write down points where you
think you have to improve.
Apart from the tips above, there
are some general considerations
to which you should pay attention:
General Points about
the Interview Process
your answers as short and succinct as possible,
using specific examples or scenarios to
demonstrate your experience, ability and
knowledge. Don't "ramble"!
you go to the interview, consider your
long term career goals and your personal
attributes. Be sure that they are not in
conflict with the job on offer or with what your
are asked to do.
to make a strengths and weakness analysis
for yourself, before you go to the
interview. Remember, you want to show your
strengths in the best light and the
better you know yourself, the better you will
perform in an interview.
honest about your own capabilities, for
example, dont position yourself as a team
player if you are a loner, (see
some comments and questions you should ask
yourself below) it may
get you the job, in the short term. But in the
long term, you will be unhappy and you will be
looking for another job soon!
There are always elements
you can control in an interview and there are those
which are outside your control, such as, for
instance, the number of people called for an interview.
Be sure that you are well prepared
for the ones, which are in your
knowledge about the business you join
enthusiasm about the job
general appearance and demeanor!
general awareness and how informed you are
Work on the ones you
The use of Video Resumes in your
If you need to present yourself well and
want to make a visual mark, prior to any personal
interview, you could make a video. This makes a positive
impact on your future employer.
To get a
wider view on how you should conduct your interview,
read some of the books below. You can buy the second hand
version, since most interview tips "do not go out of
date". Some reading might help you improve your
excellent Books on the Topic from amazon.com
The Interview is a Process where you inform
a potential Employer about your Interest, Intentions and
what you bring to the Company. But it is also a way for
the Company to inform you about them and what they offer
In other words, the information and the "getting
to know each other" process goes both ways.
Consequently, you better develop a "best fit
list" for yourself, before you go to the interview. Ask
yourself these questions!
kind of work environment do I perform best?
the most important qualities I look for in my
||Am I a
Team Player or a "Lone Cowboy"
contributing to the company?
||Am I a
mature player and take on immediate
responsibility or do I still have to develop?
(skills, emotions, organizational ability,
||Do I want
a structured, formal and regulated work
environment or would I perform better in an
unstructured free and open Organization?
capable to learn by myself (autodidactic) or do I
need formal or informal instructions?
||Do I need
a "creative environment" to perform
best or am I an "administrator"?
like a work environment that thrives on the
growth of formal and informal close personal
relationships or is that not an issue for me?
my most important values (relevant to the
organization I work in)
||Do I like
contact outside of the company environment or am
I an "organization animal"?
The above are important issues,
besides your ability to perform at the technical level of
the job. Although, the current economic circumstances
will make it more difficult to satisfy all the above
mentioned ideal aspects, you should nevertheless
aim at a best fit and identify the areas you might
Once you have determined the elements that
are really important for you, you should proceed to make
a list of questions that you would ask the human
resources manager of the hiring company. While a clever
HR manager will interpret that as a genuine attempt on
your part to give the company the best fit, there
will be many HR managers who will interpret your attempt
as overstepping your "authority" and will
therefore reject you as an applicant. You have
to use your judgement in what you want to ask and on the
topics to stay clear off, to avoid annoying a potential
Nevertheless here are some of the
questions you might want to ask.
Questions one could ask a
hiring Human Resources Manager
you describe the organization of your
company? Highly structured or free
of leadership qualities do you
want in Managers within your company?
the company's five most important
of individual personality characteristics
are seen by the company as the most beneficial?
the group of people I will join within
describe my potential career path
within the company?
Remember that the hiring manager
does not want to make a mistake in hiring you. Apart from
the fact that he would look ineffective, searching for
another person will be expensive and might delay
expansion or progress within the company. What you can
and should ask will depend though in a major way on the
level of the job that is on offer. Within a
company, we are not all equal and we are not all equally
you have to use your own judgement when
formulating these or similar questions. Remember your
overriding aim is to get the job and that the job fits
with what you like to do and what you can, technically,
in terms of skills and knowledge, and personality wise
offer to an employer!
Books that help you prepare for an
excellent Books about Interviewing Techniques
The key to a successful interview is to
remain natural without being casual. Using
interview question and answer guides is good, but use
them for what they are
"G U I D E S " only.
Prehashed answers are usually recognized by knowledgeable
hiring managers and they will make you sound unnatural
and artificial. And don't utter phrases like "I
really like working with people", they make you just
sound stupid! There are many other, better, ways of
saying that, without resorting to this overused