A successful interview can only be achieved with preparation; knowing your background and ability to articulate your achievements, goals, and interests is critical to a positive interview experience. Your resume can get you the interview – what you say, how you behave, and the impression you leave is what will get you the offer.
Experience Makes The Best Teacher
Of course you are not a serial interviewer. You don’t run around interviewing just for the heck of it. It is a targeted effort; you interview for a short period of time to secure a position – it could then be years before you do it again. It’s not possible to remain schooled in all of the ‘interview ins and outs’.
My recommendation is to plan for the ‘real deal’ by interviewing for things you are not interested in. This will give you the practice you need for the opportunities that really matter.
You will no doubt run into what I commonly refer to as ‘the stupid questions.’ You know, the Where do you see yourself in ten years? – What is your greatest weakness? – What do you do if you are being chased by a pack of hungry wolves? Okay. Maybe that last one is a stretch – or not. But, you know what I mean.
You need to be prepared with an answer; and I don’t mean a trite, thoughtless, or clichéd answer. The power is hanging in the balance! You need to prepare to answer these and other similar questions. Your responses matter – no matter how useless you think the question is.
Know your background like the back of your hand; practice your interview skills with friends; respond questions in front of a mirror to examine your body language and facial expression. Get comfortable with the answers and your delivery.
Your positive approach during the process will go a long way in setting the appropriate tone. People want to work with people that give off ‘positive vibes’. And the flipside is true as well – nobody will hire you if you can’t find your tail. Your presentation and natural passion should shine through.
I am not saying anything revolutionary here. Companies and hiring managers want well rounded candidates – people that can communicate effectively, work well with others, and can demonstrate throughout the process that they have the ability (through past performance) to drive results in a new position.
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