Free Interview Tips!
Properly preparing for the interview, both physically and mentally, is critical. Particularly in the current economic climate, how you come across in the interview, and how you "score" on other screening instruments the employer may utilize, can make the difference.
Know Your Profession
Nothing impresses Employers and Professional Recruiters more than a well-versed candidate. Stay on top of current events, product or service advances, and other items affecting your profession.
There are lots of resources available to help you stay on the top of your game:
Professional Associations. Join a professional association. Many offer periodicals, newsletters, bulletins and other communications designed to keep members informed of industry trends, changes in industry leadership, and other important data. Some associations sponsor Industry Job Banks that can be another source of info on who's hiring. Networking with other association members can also be an excellent way to get the inside track on new career opportunities.
Industry Publications and Trade Magazines. An excellent way to monitor trends, new products and technology, and movers and shakers in your profession. One possible free source of industry magazines and articles is http://www.tradepub.com.
Know Your Company
Prior to the interview, learn as much as you can about your prospective employer. The Internet can be an excellent source of information about a company's history, financial performance, markets, senior executives, and much, much more.
Be Prepared for the Interview
No one can anticipate every question and interviewer will ask, nor should you try. But you should decide, in advance of the interview, how you will respond to the most common interview questions, such as:
- Why did you leave (or why are you planning to leave) your current / last employer?
- Why did you apply for this job?
- What do you see as the top 2 or 3 strengths you would bring to the job?
- What is your salary requirement?
- How has your previous work experience, education, etc., prepared you for this job?
- If I spoke to someone who worked for you, or with you, in a previous job, what would they say was the one aspect of your performance that could stand improvement? What would they say was the best aspect of your performance?
- If you are selected, how quickly can you begin work?
- What would be the most challenging aspects of this job?
It's not a bad idea to rehearse your answers to these questions. Have a friend or relative ask the questions in no particular order, and practice answering them just as you would in the interview.
Other Interview Tips
Like most other skills, the interviewing skill tends to improve with practice. If you're lucky enough the get multiple interviews, build your own list of questions that keep coming up. Pay particular attention to those industry-related or occupation-related questions you weren't comfortable answering, and do some research so the next time one of those questions is asked, you're prepared.