Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Brush Up on Your Job Interviewing Skills

 Brush Up on Your Interviewing Skills Here 
The interview is your best opportunity to stand out from the other candidates who are competing for the open position. What you say and how you act will go a long way towards determining if you get the job.

Remember, first impressions are everything during an interview. So be sure to use those first five seconds to look and sound your best. Also, your interview starts at the moment you arrive at the company, so make sure you act professional at all times.

For your initial interview, you want to look your professional best. In general, dress too conservatively - white shirt, dark suit, and the like are most appropriate. Avoid loud colors, faddish styles and anything that would distract from what you are there to sell - you.

Be Prepared
  • Clarify your professional short - and long - term goals. Be able to articulate them clearly. Discuss your goals with your recruiter.
  • Make sure you have your resume and references available to fill out employment applications.
  • Learn as much as possible about an organization before you arrive at the interview. Good sources are annual reports, the company's website, trade journals, and your recruiter.
  • Be prepared for the standard questions. Keep your answers specific and concise, and work to maintain a good balance of conservation with your interviewer. Try to limit answers to one or two minutes.
  • Allow at least two hours for your interview to ensure that you will not be rushed.
Be Professional
  • Arrive ten to fifteen minutes early for your appointment. Do not go in any earlier.
  • Make sure cell phones and pagers are turned off. Do not chew gum.
  • Keep your personal items in your left had so that you are "exchange ready" with your right had free to shake hands with your interviewer.
  • Do not use any name to address your interviewer but the one they used in their introduction.
  • Be polite, alert, and relaxed. Indicate a genuine interest in the interviewer with eye contact and always remember to smile.
  • Watch you body posture and body language. Slouching, leaning on the interviewer's desk, and moving around are distracting.
  • Do not be afraid to express your genuine interest in and excitement about the position, the company, and its goals. Enthusiasm is the most frequently cited reason for hiring.
  • Project self-confidence by speaking positively about your abilities, experience, and willingness to acquire new skills.
  • Try to avoid negativity, or put positive spins on any negatives (i.e. if you are lacking a particular skill, talk about the relevant skills you do have).
  • Be honest and sincere.
Clear Communication Is Key
  • Answer questions in an articulate and organized manner.
  • Prospective employers don't want to hear simple "yes" and "no" answers. Explain yourself whenever possible.
  • There's nothing wrong with asking for a moment to think about the question or asking for the interviewer to clarify the question.
  • Listen carefully, and be as concise as possible in your answers.
  • Always speak positively about former employers and experiences.
  • Relate your work experience directly to the needs of the organization. Examples of past accomplishments effectively demonstrate your abilities.
  • If you are asked questions about your personal life, use them as opportunities to emphasize how well balance your personal and professional life.
  • Save questions about salary, benefits, vacation, sick leave, etc., for discussion after you have received an offer.
It's a Two Way Conversation
Both you and the interviewer can gain something from the interview. You may possibly go through more than one interview with a company before you are offered a position, so your primary goal during any interview is to get a job offer or, at the very least an additional interview.
For the employer, the interview is an opportunity to gather more information about you. A resume, testing and an application on tell you so much. The employer wants to know who you will fit in the organization's environment, what your work style is like, what motivates you and that your experience and training are relevant to the open position.

At the End of the Interview
Briefly express your strong interest in the company and the position, thank the interviewer for his or her time and leave on a positive note. You should also call your recruiter. He or she will be getting feedback from both you and the company and will want to discuss it. And always send a thank you email the same day. Keep it brief and to the point, expressing your interest in the company.

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