When called for an interview, restate the time and place to be sure you have recorded
it correctly. Ask who the interviewer(s) will be and the format of the interview.
Prepare answers to common interview questions, including behavior-based questions.
Practice aloud by yourself or with a friend playing the role of interviewer. There’s
no substitute for practice.
Decide on five reasons you would be a tremendous asset to this organization. These
are your selling points. Spend time practicing how you will explain the reasons you
are an outstanding candidate.
Be ready to tell the interviewer why you want to work for this company in this position.
Identify your top 4-6 strengths and talents. Think of examples of using the strengths
and develop short anecdotes that describe your accomplishments and contributions.
Practice speaking these aloud.
Create a list of questions you will ask during the interview.
Research the organization on the Internet or at the library.
Carefully plan what you will wear to the interview. Avoid trendy clothes, too much
jewelry and heavy scents. All are distracting.
Allow more time than you think you need to get to the interview. Traffic may be heavier
than you expected. Plan to arrive a few minutes early so you have time to relax.
Gather these items to take with you: additional résumé copies, list of references,
samples of your work assembled in a portfolio.
During the Interview
Smile! Employers hire people they would like to work with. Be likable.
Let your enthusiasm show. Be excited about what you've accomplished.
Answer each question in two minutes or less.
Tell the stories you developed before the interview. Be interesting. Give specific
examples that demonstrate your expertise.
Ask questions about the job and the organization. Find out about their problems and
Rather than recite your history, emphasize problems solved and contributions made.
If you don’t understand a question, ask for clarification before you answer it.
At the end of the interview, thank the interviewer for his/her time. If you’d like
the job, express your interest. Ask about the selection process (is there a second
interview?) and when a decision will be made.
After the Interview
Immediately after the interview, make notes on whatever you can remember.
Review how it went. Make notes on these questions:
What did I do well? (At least 5 things)
What things about my background, skills and strengths seemed to interest the interviewer?
What didn’t go well?
Things I’ll do differently during my next interview.
Concerns I have about the position or organization.
Things I liked about the position and the organization.
Give yourself a reward. You deserve it. (Have a latté, go for a walk, see a movie)
If you gave out your list of references, call each person. Give them information about
the position they can be ready to answer a reference call.
Send a thank-you letter or email the same day.
If you don’t hear back by the time the employer promised, it's appropriate to call
and politely ask where the organization is in the decision-making process.