First impressions are crucial on interviews! Here are some tips for making yours a success.
Interview 101: the golden egg!
- Do dress to impress! This is GO-TIME for serious professionalism. Attire should be acceptable by any conservative committee – not a direct reflection of your uniqueness or one-of-a-kind style.
- Do leave your cell phone in the car. Do not remotely tempt yourself to accept a phone call, check the time, temperature, or complete a round of chores on Hay Day.
- Do prepare. Be familiar with the job, very familiar with the company, and definitely with yourself. Be ready to site related-to-the-line-of-questioning experiences and accomplishments.
- Do make eye contact and be engaging. This is not the time to study the wall or that button on your coat – the interviewer will think you are either uncomfortable, insecure, or shifty.
- Do prepare at least three questions to ask that are specific to the need, the company, and how you can add value. Refer back to #3 – this shows you are intuitive and prepared. Unless your only question is about PTO and holiday pay because you take regular trips to the next state over to buy Powerball tickets.
- Don’t be negative. Any attempt to place blame or direct fault toward a current or previous employer is a direct and poor reflection on you. Contemplate and prepare a positive answer for any history you could be asked about that is less than comfortable to discuss.
- Don’t ramble or over share. Practice your responses to commonly asked questions – you will be nervous and getting chatty runs the risk of sharing too much. No one interviewing really knows where to put a response that includes, “…and that was before I went through my horrible divorce…”
- Don’t kiss this interviewers hand! Culture counts. If interviewing in America, a firm handshake with eye contact and a smile – perfect.
- Don’t try to lead the interview. This is not the time to showcase your controlling nature or “take charge” attitude. Best to leave any consideration of being a Bossypants to Tina Fey.
- Don’t lie on the employment application. For any reason. Period. Yes, employers do run background checks and yes, regardless of time passed, there is a possibility that “oops!” you committed in 1990 will appear. Many second chances are given to those who admit past failures.