Ace your interview!

How to Prepare for you Interview:

Do Some Homework

Before you go to your interview you should do some basic research in order to get a better idea of what kind of company you are interviewing with. No matter what kind of job you are applying for, it is very important to know exactly what the company does and how it operates. You can search through their website or check with other sites that have company profile information. If you learned of the job by word-of-mouth, ask the person you spoke with if they have any more information about the company or even the specific job.

There are a few things that you should definitely know about a company before you show up to interview for a position. Some important things that you should look for while you are researching the company are:

  • How the company operates
  • Is it small or big?
  • Are they local or national?
  • Are there chances for advancement?

Know What You Want

Don't go into an interview with no idea of what kind of job you are looking for. Before the interview process begins, think about what it is you want to get out of the job and how successful you think you would be. Be honest with yourself because the key to finding a great job that makes you happy is whether or not you enjoy doing it. Without having an idea of what kind of job is right for you, you run the risk of ending up in a job that you hate going to everyday.

I would suggest making a list of all the things that you enjoy doing and are could see yourself doing on a daily basis. Recognize what your strengths are. Just because you could see yourself going to the zoo everyday doesn't mean that you should be a zookeeper. If you make a list of these things and compare it with a list of your skills and qualifications then you will find yourself seeking jobs that will make you happy on a daily basis.

Things to Bring

There are a few things that you should never show up at an interview without. First of all, make sure that you bring a notebook or a something that you can write on and keep resumes and other documents in. Sometimes you will be given information at an interview and nobody wants to carry around a pile of papers. The notebook will also be helpful when it comes time to take notes or write down any important information. This brings us to the second thing you should always bring and that is a pen or pencil. Be prepared to write down whatever information that the interviewer thinks is important enough to mention. Along with these things you should also bring a copy of your personal business card if you have one. This can be put in your notebook for safekeeping. If they ask you for your card and you forgot it you may be missing out on an opportunity if they then forget about you.

The Day Of the Interview

On the day of the interview you should be prepared to answer any and all questions that could potentially be thrown at you. You reach this level of confidence by practicing your answers, going over your notes, and doing some research about the company.

Make sure that you leave for your interview early enough so that you can get there ten minutes before your interview is actually scheduled. When I am reporting for an interview I always leave an extra half hour before so that way I can account for any traffic or problems with directions. Usually you wont have any trouble find the place so if you get there early, what I always do is find a nearby coffee shop and go over my notes. Arriving on time is very important but if you get there too early you can come off as desperate.

Know how to answer interview questions

Common Interview Questions that Will be Asked:

  1. Where do you see yourself in five/ten years?

  2. What are some of your weaknesses?

  3. Why did you leave your last job?

  4. Why do you want to work for us?

  5. What are you passionate about?

  6. What motivates you?

  7. Do you have any questions?

When Planning How To Answer Common Questions....

As your interview approaches and you begin to consider how you will answer the questions asked of you, remember that sincerity and honest are almost always the best approach. In your answers and throughout the entire interview you want to convey that you are a trust worthy and loyal individual. Practicing your answers before hand will help you determine how you can answer the questions honestly while also maintaining your image.

Another benefit that comes as a result of practice is that your answers will sound more fluid and natural.The entire time you are at the interview you are basically being judged by the interviewer. Because of this it is important to be remembered by the company representative as having had confidence and answering the interview questions with all the "courage of your convictions". Write down potential answers to all of the common questions listed above. Narrow down which responses best fit the job description and the image you are trying to portray while keeping honesty in the back of your  mind.

If you spend enough time practicing to where you feel confident in your answers then you are probably prepared enough for your interview. Just remember that practice does not make perfect, and there is no "perfect" answer to any interview question. I would say that what practice will do for you is make connections between the questions you will be asked and the answers you will give which will help raise your confidence for your interview.