Interviewing tips and advice

Good job interviewing skills are critical to landing the job. You may have a great resume and really good GPA, but if you can't communicate your qualities, skills, and experience to a potential employer in an interview, your chances of success in your job search decrease. Here are some tips, advice, and useful links:

1. PRACTICE (makes perfect)! This is a cliche, but oh so TRUE. Take this link to find some common interview questions. Now think about how you would answer them. Then practice them out loud. Use your mom (or other person), your pet; whoever will listen and give you some feedback. A mirror is OK too, but obviously feedback won't be available, except for what you see. You can contact career services, and we'd be happy to do a mock interview session with you. The following website has many great articles on interviewing:

Job Interview Picture

2. Research the organization in advance. Don't just go to the company's website (which is important), but research through online searches and online research resources accessed through your local library. Talk with people who work for the company if you can. Find out what the company has for goals and upcoming plans. Compose questions to the interviewer that show you have done this research. Be prepared to explain how you would fit with these plans.

3. Dress for a first great impression. I know it sounds unfair, because you may be the greatest candidate coming in; but if you don't dress appropriately, your chances of getting the job are slim. Here's a link to some guidelines: Undercover Recruiter Page

4. Don't introduce forbidden topics. They raise the question of discrimination and hiring managers don't like getting sued. Such topics are: religion, plans for pregnancy/number of children; sexual orientation; etc. If it's personal information or unrelated to your ability to do the job, don't talk about it. There are exceptions to this rule: for instance, if you are applying for a job working with children and have been an active volunteer at your church's Sunday school, you may need to mention that as part of your experience. You should also be aware of these questions in case your interviewer raises them. More information available on forbidden topics here.

5. Follow up with a thank you. Send a thank you note to the interviewer(s). Hand written is best, but email is acceptable. Thank the interviewer for his or her time and remind them of your interest in the position. Some examples of thank you notes can be found here.


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