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Job Interview Preparedness

Updated on July 8, 2020

The job interview can be nerve wracking, sweaty, and often the worst experience most adults will face. However, if you prepare in advance for an interview, then you can go through an interview without that knot in your stomache, and your skill for the job will shine through.

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Know Your Story and Theirs

Every job posted has a description, and asks for specific skills and experience. Not only should this be highlighted in your resume', you should be able to discuss your experience at length. The purpose of your job interview is to find out if your past experience indicates future success. Review your job description before the interview and pick out five areas for which your future employer might ask you questions, and make sure you write down a situation, your reaction to that situation, and the results of your action for each one. This will help you as you answer questions regarding your past experience and allow you to confidently speak to your story as a valued employee.

Also, know what type of company for which you're interviewing. Know some strengths, and some areas of opportunity to which you might contribute. Have a little of the company history, some current highlights, and know the direction in which the company is going. Understanding how you fit into a company by knowing a little bit about it will impress your interviewers.


Dress for Success in Your Interview

I know this sounds like common sense, but I'm amazed how people look when they come in for a job interview. Clean clothes are not enough, they should be pressed. Dress shoes are not enough, they should be shined. Lay out your clothes the night before, and even if your interview is over the phone, always dress professional. People do have an eye for how you feel over the phone as well as in person, and the extra effort will make you feel more confident.

When considering what to wear, make sure it is at the same level or above the current dress standards of the company. Not every interview requires a suit and tie, but some reconnaissance before you interview is in order. 

Have the Right Tools to Interview

Ask how many people you can expect at the interview, and make sure you bring enough materials (at least your resume') for each person, including you.

Take some time to have some questions about the position for post interview. Nearly every interviewer give the person being interviewed time for questions at the end, consider asking at least two that assume you already have the position. A couple of tips:

DON'T ask when you will be notified of the decision.
DON'T ask how many other people are interviewing.
DON'T ask about pay rates, save that for the job offer.

DO ask about what type of training they have available for you when you start
DO ask about opportunities for advancement.
DO ask about the expectations for the position, and follow up with how you fit in those expectations.

Close the Interview

After you ask your questions, it's up to you to close the interview. You might say something like "That's all the questions I have, do you have anything else for me?

Thank all that are involved, by name if you can. If you don't remember their name, don't try. Shake hands and look them in the eye. 

Practice this before you go into the interview, and make sure that you sound confident throughout. Worked right, they'll be impressed that you're not taking up their time, and that you were the one in charge the whole time.

Good luck on your job.

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