Before the Interview
BEFORE THE INTERVIEW:
- Research: Research your employer before your interview.
- Prepare your resume (complete with contacts and references): For resume assistance, go to our Resume Builder, which includes a resume lab and sample resumes. Make sure to bring your resume to your interview.
- Practice interviewing: Prior to an interview, get as much practice as possible. Whether you connect with a JobNow interview coach, a friend, or just speak in front of the mirror, get plenty of practice answering tough interview questions.
THE FOLLOWING TIPS WILL HELP YOU PREPARE FOR YOUR INTERVIEW:
- Anticipate questions: Perhaps the most effective way to get ready for an interview is to prepare responses for a wide range of questions. Obviously, one can’t anticipate every question, but by preparing responses to practice questions, you will have a series of answers that you can draw from when tackling unexpected questions.
- Two questions you must be able to answer: Never go into a job interview without having a clear answer to the following two questions:
- Why do you want this job? It is important that you do as much research about your prospective employer and the position for which you are applying. This gives you an opportunity to show your interviewer that you are responsible and diligent, and that your enthusiasm for the position is founded upon genuine knowledge of the job.
- Why should we hire you? Ultimately, you must convince your prospective employer that you are worth hiring. Generally speaking, employers look for skills and background coupled with enthusiasm, competence, and a positive attitude, and your response should incorporate as many of these elements as possible. In addition, a carefully formulated response will help you influence which questions come next. If you keep your answer general, your interviewer will most likely ask you follow-up questions relating to the areas you mention:
- If you want follow-up questions about your educational background, mention it! “ You should hire me because my educational background has not only prepared me for this position but has given me a glimpse into just how interesting and challenging this field can be.” Your interviewer will most likely ask a follow up question about your educational background.
- If you want follow-up questions about your past job, mention it! “You should hire me because I have the skills for this position based on my track record and past employment, and I am very interested in this area of work”. Your interviewer will most likely ask additional questions about your past employment.
- If you have a weak background and would rather field questions about your perseverance, mention it! “You should hire me because, while I may not have done this job before, I have a track record of taking on tough challenges and succeeding.” Your interviewer will most likely ask you to describe in greater detail the tough challenges you’ve overcome.