Tag Archives: Career Advise

How Not to Baba Booey an Interview

6 Jan

Image

We know it. We have studied it. We dread it. The Interview. When you are actively searching for jobs many thoughts run through your mind: “This position looks like it fits me, I’m going to apply!” or “Awesome! They sent me a positive email/phone response to my application!” and “What do I wear? What time do I arrive? How do I act for… The Interview?!” Let’s face it interviews are terrifying! No matter how prepared you are, how well you are suited for the job or how nice the interviewer is, that “interview panic” stays with you before, during and for a little while after you knock their socks off…or don’t (but that’s why you are reading this!). So here are seven tips and tricks for how to make a positive impression:

1.    Make Your Resume Relevant

Over the course of our professional careers our resumes are going to be edited dramatically not only from the variety of positions we will hold, but also from altering each resume for each job application. You may have held 10 internship positions in your college career, from working at a magazine, graphic design, carpentry, etc., but that doesn’t mean that your potential future employer needs to know, nor cares about all of these positions. Make sure that what you list on your resume applies to the job you are hoping to get! Sure, add a few things to show that you are well rounded, but not too many. Make it relevant not ridiculous.

2.    Practice, Practice, Practice

No matter how many interviews you have attempted, practice always makes perfect! Look up common interview questions and practice your responses to them. Make sure that your responses are short and relevant to the position. The more you practice the more confident and competent you will look!

 3.    10-15 Minutes

Arriving on time is arriving late. If your interview is at 9:00 a.m. be there at 8:45, 8:50 at the latest. Without saying anything, your timely, or not so timely, arrival shows how important this position is to you and what kind of worker you are. Arriving early is the easiest way to make a positive impression, so plan ahead and show them you are serious!

4.    Do Your Homework

One of the most common interview questions is: So tell me what you know about (company’s name)? If you can’t sum up the basics from what is on the company’s website or social media pages, you mine as well just apologize for being a moron/wasting their time, and leave. Like showing up early, knowing basic facts about the company’s history and goals is a must and shows how seriously you do and will take this position. Make them feel like you have been a part of the team for years from all that you know about the company!

5.    Dress The Part

Dressing the part goes hand-in-hand with doing your homework on the company. For example, showing up for an interview at a laid-back company that sells surfboards in a suit is not appropriate and quite frankly borders on embarrassing. The same goes for showing up at an interview with a law firm in jeans and a t-shirt. Like showing up early, this is a non-verbal cue that shows how much work you have put into your research on the company and what you know about the position you are hoping to fill.

6.    Don’t Be Afraid To Ask Some Q’s!

The best way to show that you are engaged in the interview is to ask questions throughout, and end it with a few closing q’s! Questions like: What are you looking for in the employee who fills this position? And, When are you hoping to fill this position by? Are great ways to look as though not only do you want the position, but you are willing to be whatever they need you to be and you are ready to start immediately. Obviously, do not ask these questions if they have already been discussed in the interview, so make sure you come up with a list of 5 or 6 ahead of time. 

7.    Follow Up!

Lastly, after your interview, when they smack themselves in the head wondering where you had been hiding all this time because of how perfect you are for this job, follow up. Send an email, or hand-write a thank you card (the latter is a great choice in an age where technology has overtaken personal mail), expressing your gratitude to them for taking the time to interview you and emphasize your continued interest in the position. Be prompt and professional! As I have repeated, show them that you are serious about their company and this position!

Advertisements