Job interview Advices
Job interview is the most stressful part of the job search for many people. But it doesn’t have to be. Interviews are an opportunity to show you are an enthusiastic worker who would do a job well. Learn these Interview questions and answers techniques, you can make the most of that opportunity by being prepared, presenting a professional demeanor, and describing your qualification well.
There are many types of job interviews: screening interviews, informational interview, directive style, meandering style, stress interview, behavioral interview, the audition, group interview, tag-team interview, mealtime interview and follow-up interview.
Although these interviews often have different purposes, they all require basic interviewing skills.
Read on for advice about what to do before, during and after a job interview.
Career counselors say a good job interview starts well before the jobseeker and interviewer meet. Preparation can be as important as the interview itself. Researching, practicing and dressing appropriately are the first steps to making the most of a job interview.
Research. One of the best, but most frequently overlooked, ways to demonstrate enthusiasm for a job is to research both the company and the position for which you are being interviewed. Employers say they are impressed by well-informed jobseekers.
Before arriving for a job interview, you should know what the company does, how large it is, any recent changes it has undergone, and what role you could play in its organization. Try to learn about the company’s goal and values. With these facts, you can show how your qualifications match the company’s needs.
Practice describing yourself. Another important step in preparing for a job interview is to practice describing your professional characteristics. Think of examples from past jobs, schoolwork, and activities to illustrate important skills. Recalling accomplishments beforehand, when you don’t have to respond under interview pressure, will strengthen your answers during the actual event.
Every interview will be different, and there may always be surprising questions. Nevertheless, interviewers suggest rehearsing with a career counselor or friend to gain confidence and poise. When responding, focus on subjects related to the job. For example, if asked to describe yourself, talk about your professional characteristics and background, not your personal life.
The goal is not to memorize responses to these questions but to become comfortable speaking about yourself, your training and experience, and your career goals. The interviewer might ask for a weakness or failure; choose one that does not affect your ability to do the job, or describe a shortcoming you are working to overcome. For example, if interviewing for an entry-level job, cite your lack of paid experience. If there are weaknesses evident on your resume or transcript, such as being fired from a job or receiving poor grades, rehearse an explanation before the interview in case you are asked about them. Focus on what you learned from the experience, being careful never to criticize a previous employer or coworker.
Dress professionally. Securing a job is much easier if you look the part. A useful guideline is to dress as you would for an important day on the job, like a meeting with a manager or a presentation to a client.
Clothes should be clean, well fitting, and wrinkle free. Most employers expect jobseekers to wear a traditional two-piece suit, preferably in a conservative color such as navy blue, gray, or black. The object is to look reliable, not trendy. Many employers say that women’s skirts should be knee-length or below, polished, closed-toe shoes complete the professional image.
On the day of the interview, give yourself plenty of time to get ready for and travel to the interview. Plan to arrive 10 to 15 minutes early. (Some career counselors suggest making a test run to the interview site in advance to familiarize yourself with the travel route.)
Consider carrying a briefcase to the job interview. In addition to giving you a professional look, a briefcase serves a function: it gives portability to things you’ll want at the interview. These include a pen and paper to record important information, such as the proper spelling of the interviewer’s name and the time and date of follow-up interviews; copies of your resume or application and references, and examples of your work, such as writing samples.
First Impressions.The interview begins the moment you arrive. Everyone you meet, from the receptionist to the hiring manager, will form an impression of you. To ensure the impression is positive, remember that your words and mannerisms will affect the image you project. When greeting people, smile warmly and shake hands. Make eye contact and maintain good posture. Don’t create a negative impression by using slang, chewing gum, smoking cigarettes, or giving curt, one-word answers.
Responding to questions. After introductions, the interviewer will probably explain the job in more detail, discuss the company, or initiate friendly conversation. The interviewer will then ask questions to try to gauge how well you would fill the position.
When responding to the interviewer, avoid giving vague answers such as, “I want to work with people” (or animal, or cars, or whatever the job entails). Instead, describe the specific ways you want to work with them. You might also give examples of how you have successfully done so in the past. Focus on your strengths, but always tell the truth.
Rather than trying to stay in control, let the interviewer direct the session. Listen attentively, and be sure to answer the question asked. Watch the interviewer’s mannerisms for clues about whether to elaborate or keep your responses short.
Some jobseekers are so focused on specific answers, they forget to relax and connect with the interviewers. An interview should be conversational. However, that does not mean you are expected to speak without pause. You should stop to consider and answer before responding to difficult or unexpected questions. And if a question is confusing, ask for clarification.
Turning the tables. At some point, usually toward the end of the interview, you will have the opportunity to ask your own questions. This is your chance to find out more about the company. After all, you may have to decide if you want to work there. Some questions you might want to ask include:
Who would supervise me?
Can you describe a typical assignment?
Are there opportunities for advancement?
How do you train employees?
What do you like more about working for this company?
Before leaving the interview, make sure you understand the next step in the hiring process. Find out whether there will be another round of interviews, whether you should provide additional information, and when a hiring decision will be made.
Finally, be sure to thank the interviewer. And if you are interested in the job, say so.
Even after the job interview is over, your task is not complete. Secure a good impression by sending a thank you letter to the interview. It is best to send the letter within 2 days of the job interview, but any time is better than none.
Thank you letters should be brief – less than one page – and may be handwritten or typed. Their purpose is to express your appreciation for the interviewer’s time and to reiterate you interest in the job.
Types of Interviews
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