Prepare to Ace Your Interview.

Senior businessman holding two thumbs up in agreement, isolated on white backgroundThe interview has to be the most stressful event in a job searchers life. In an earlier post,  I compared it to a root canal without Novocain But it doesn’t have to be.  By planning ahead of time, you will ace it.

Preparing for you interview begins when you find the job ad and decide you want to submit your résumé.

  • Set up a folder on your computer with the name of the company and position.   Create a document with the complete posting including all contact information you have.  Put your résumé and cover letter you send for this position in the folder, as well.  Set up a Google Alert for the company and store the information in the folder.  Also include any press releases, articles about the company or employees.  Any correspondence you have with the company should find it’s way into this folder  and if you have a phone screen, include your notes.  Make folders within the main folder and information will be  easier to find.
  • Prepare questions you can be asked.  Do an internet search for questions that can be asked for the specific job title.  Beware of illegal questions and how they can be twisted to sound legal.  Look over the list every day and think about what your answer.
  • Prepare questions you can ask.  At the end of the interview,  the interviewer will ask you if you have any questions.  Yes,  you do.  Again, an internet search will provide you with excellent questions.  The last question should be inquiring about the time line of the process.
  • Brush up on the qualifications.  If you have been unemployed and haven’t done the job in a while, brush up on the updates and changes since you were in the position.
  • Assemble your outfit.  You should be dressed appropriately for the position.  If you have questions, ask the person who set up the interview.  You don’t need expensive clothes, but they should be clean, pressed and in good repair.  Shoes should be clean and polished.  Don’t wear any scent.  Limit makeup and jewelry.
  • Do a dry run the day before.  Go to the location of the interview the day before, find parking, and time how long it took you to get there.  Do this at the same time of the day as the interview.
  • Pack for your interview.  Bring extra copies of you resume, a pad folio, a working pen, breath mints.  If you take your cell phone, turn it off.   Not on silent mode.  Off.
  • Arrive about 10 minutes ahead of time.  Plan to arrive about 10 minutes before the interview.  If you arrive earlier, wait in the lobby or in your car.  Don’t be late under any circumstance.
  • Be courteous to everyone you meet from the moment you step foot on company property.  The interviewer isn’ the only person you have to impress.  Everyone you meet has the potential to have input on your candidacy.
  • Practice guided imagery.  Relax and imagine your acing the interview.  Answer the questions you have prepared to answer while relaxed.  Picture yourself getting the good news you have been hired and doing the job.

There are many things you need to do to prepare for the interview.  This post only skims the surface of all the possibilities.  Future posts will go into detail about individual items and what to during and after the interview.  To your success!

4 Comments to "Prepare to Ace Your Interview."

  1. Donovan Dreyer's Gravatar Donovan Dreyer
    January 12, 2013 - 11:25 pm | Permalink

    Very thorough coverage of how to be thoroughly prepared, Arleen. Keep bringing forth the wisdom! It is what the companies pass on when they create gray ceilings.

  2. Nancy Kay's Gravatar Nancy Kay
    January 11, 2013 - 3:28 pm | Permalink

    These are valuable tips! I remember going on so many job interviews for a paralegal job back in 2008 and 2009 right after the job market crashed. These attorneys had tons of overqualified applicants to interview and they would often toss me in their boardroom and grill me in detail as if I were in a deposition or in the courtroom during cross-exam! So relieved that I’ve started my own business now providing Divorce Guidance and C0-Parenting Coaching.

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