During the Interview

  • Sell yourself.
  • Know your audience.
  • Be enthusiastic, but be sincere.
    Sincere – don’t gush over a job or a company that you couldn’t give a hoot about. In fact, why are you interviewing with this company if you’re not excited about the job?
    Based in your deep interests – if you start your career and job search with an awareness of your deepest, most compelling interests, then you should eventually find yourself in interviews for jobs that you truly are excited about.
  • Think about how you can set yourself apart from other applicants.
  • Keep the interviewer’s attention.
  • Don’t place blame on or be negative about past employers.

Details

  • Plan to arrive at least fifteen minutes before the interview. That will help reduce your stress level, and you will ensure that traffic or other delays don’t make you late.
  • Bring a pen and notebook with you. If you wish to take a few notes during your interview (to jot down your interviewer’s responses to your questions, for example), ask the interviewer if that’s okay.
  • Greet your interviewer by name, with a firm handshake and a smile. Until your interviewer tells you otherwise, use the more formal “Mr. (Smith)” or “Ms. (Johnson).”
  • Wait for the interviewer to sit down or invite you to sit down before seating yourself.
  • Do not smoke or chew gum.
  • Sit comfortably, maintain good body posture.
  • Maintain good eye contact.
  • Listen carefully to what the interviewer is saying. Take a few seconds to think about a difficult question before responding. Responding quickly may convey that you’re impulsive and don’t take time to think about your decisions.
  • Don’t make up answers to questions you don’t know. Your interviewer will conclude that you will do the same thing in the work place.
  • Enthusiasm is vital! Demonstrate your interest in the job and in the company.
  • Close the interview on a positive note: indicate that the job looks like a good fit and you feel you can make a contribution to the organization; ask about any needed follow-up and when you can expect to next hear from the company; and thank the interviewer for his or her time.
  • Be sure you have the interviewer’s business card, or at least the proper spelling of their name, their title and their address and phone number.

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