Morgantown, WV 26505
Phone: (304) 284-8500
Fax: (304) 284-8985
A SUCCESSFUL INTERVIEW IS PROBABLY THE MOST IMPORTANT STEP IN GETTING ANY JOB. It is your chance to describe your qualifications and relate them to the particular job requirements. However, as hard as we try to get it right, interviewers sometimes screen applicants in or out for the most trivial things. Read on to pick up some important interview suggestions.
Things TO DO to get that job.
- Research the company before the interview, and be knowledgeable about their services.
- Dress professionally to make a good first impression.
- Arrive 10 minutes early. Late arrival is looked upon negatively. Call the interviewer if an emergency delays you in any way. Arriving a few extra minutes early will give you time to gain your composure; and mentally prepare for the interview.
- Complete a job application form in its entirety if it is requested. Don't write "See Resume" on the form.
- Offer a firm handshake to the interviewer at the beginning and at the end of the interview.
- Maintain eye contact with the interviewer throughout the interview.
- Be proactive and discuss your qualifications fully. Stress your key accomplishments that relate to this particular job in a manner that demonstrates your pride in them.
- Maintain a professional and courteous demeanor throughout the interview day. This includes your interactions with everyone. (i.e. be friendly to: all receptionists, employees you pass in the hallways, waiters at lunch, etc.) Your behavior will be observed by all. During the formal interview session, don't be too casual. Interviewers are not your buddies. Be aware of what your body language is saying. Smile, sit up straight and don't fidget.
- Prepare for difficult questions in advance. If asked about your weaknesses, explain what you have recently done to improve in those areas. Discuss negative events in your career past as situations from which you have learned and grown professionally.
- Listen First. This is a difficult skill to master, but essential. Focus on what is being said, as well as the tone and speed of the presentation. Observe the interviewer's body language. Once you understand a hiring authority's presentation style. You can enhance your compatibility by patterning your answers and style accordingly.
- Stay on track during the interview, and be sure you answer the questions the employer is really asking. If unsure, ask the interviewer to clarify any question.
- When asked "Tell me about yourself." spend five minutes describing your career background, not your personal life.
- Take a portfolio of materials showing your key accomplishments. This will set you apart from other applicants who normally do not take the time to prepare a portfolio, and will make you appear very professional and organized.
- Take extra original copies of your resume and present one to each person you meet.
- Always impress upon the interviewer why you are interested in their organization, their job, their location, etc.
- Maintain a high energy level throughout the interview. Display interest and enthusiasm in the job opportunity.
- Be able to state your short and long term goals, and describe how this position fits neatly into them.
- Be sure not to interrupt the interviewer. Don't anticipate. Let the interviewer complete the question before giving your answer.
- Never smoke or chew gum. Don't order alcoholic beverages at a business lunch. Pop a breath mint into your mouth shortly before the interview begins.
- Be careful not to ramble on with your answers to questions. Stay on the topic. Lengthy answers can make you sound unsure, that you may be hiding something, or simply imply that you are not able to present clear and concise ideas. On the flip side, don't give only a simple "yes" or "no". Give brief examples whenever possible.
- Avoid wearing heavy fragrances.
- Never tell a lie. Respond to all questions honestly.
- Always be positive in a job interview, especially when discussing previous positions. Never speak negatively about your present or former employers, companies, or supervisors.
- You, as the candidate, should never be the one to bring up the issue of salary. If asked, simply review your prior compensation history and state your current salary. Don't lock yourself in by stating a specific salary figure.
- Always end the interview on a positive, upbeat note. Do be proactive and tell the interviewer if you want the job or will entertain an offer. But don't show disappointment or be surprised if the interviewer does not extend an immediate job offer, or if a specific salary level is not identified. The interviewer may need to communicate with your recruiter first, may have committed to interview other applicants before he/she can make a decision, or may need to have a specific salary amount authorized by the Human Resources Department.
- Send a Thank You Note after the interview to each key person you met. If there were areas of questioning left incomplete, write a Thank You Note, and reiterate key points you want a second chance to cover.