Congratulations! You’ve landed that all important face-to-face interview that every job seeker is after. Based on your resume and possibly a phone screen, the interviewer thinks your background and skill set may be a good match for their company. But now what? Even the most experienced job seeker gets nervous before an interview because you can’t know for sure what to expect. Interviews can vary greatly based on the position, corporate culture and the interviewer’s personality and attitude. Here are some helpful tips to ensure your success no matter what type of position you are interviewing for.
- Research the company beforehand. Familiarize yourself with their vision and mission statements, product lines/services offered, key personnel and any recent company news.
- Arrive on time. Don’t be more than 10-15 minutes early for the interview.
- Greet the receptionist or assistant politely and courteously. This is your chance to make a good first impression.
- Dress professionally. Depending on the company a suit may not be required, but you should err on the more formal, conservative side.
- Bring a notebook and pen to jot down and comments, questions or important facts that arise throughout the interview.
- Remember to bring all required documentation such as licenses, certifications and identification. If possible, bring multiple copies of your resume.
- Maintain eye contact during the interview. This will show sincerity and general interest in what they have to say.
- Make sure you ask relevant, thoughtful questions. (The research you did before the interview may help identify questions)
- Remember to send a thank-you note to all parties you met with no more than 24 hours after the interview.
- Be late. Respect your interviewer’s schedule and time constraints. If for some reason you may be late phone the company as soon as possible.
- Use foul language or crack jokes, especially ones that could be viewed as offensive. Even if the atmosphere is relaxed, you may give the impression that you are not taking the opportunity seriously.
- Insult or put down former companies, bosses, or co-workers.
- Dress too casually. Jeans, sweats and dirty or wrinkled clothing have no place in an interview.
- Use your cell phone during the interview. Make sure you turn it on silent or leave your phone in your car.
Remember, the most important thing is to be confident in yourself and your abilities to portray the best you possible.