Interviewing is a funny creature to both the interviewer and the candidate. It is awkward turtle at first, no matter how prepared you think you are! The good news is that it does not discriminate, it is awkward across the board.
Some of my funniest stories have come from being the interviewer, some from being the candidate. I interviewed a candidate for an executive position that was so jacked up on coke that he could not sit still and tapped his foot and hand consistently. I have had a few people (men and women) ask for my phone number. Candidates have come in on numerous occasions that could not answer one of my questions without referring to their resumes. I have also made some stories from my interviewing. One time right before I had a scheduled interview, I ate a bagel and lox with capers on it and instantly had an allergic reaction to the capers. During the interview, I suddenly became Charlie Brown’s teacher and all I heard was waa waa waa. My face broke out in hives and I ran out of my office to barf. I still feel bad for that candidate!
Some things you just can’t prepare for, however, some things you can. There are some proven steps you can take to ensure that you make a supreme impression. Clearly, this is not a guaranteed hiring technique, however, it will help!
- Make sure you know the companies culture and history. With the internet and social networking, not one person has an excuse to not complete this step.
- Study your resume so that you never have to refer to it during your interview. It is your life, you should know it!
- Find people on social networking sites that have and are currently working at this company, ask them questions about their experience. The more you know, the better equipped you will be to hold a conversation with the interviewer.
- Always have questions written down that you want to ask. i.e.: Is this a new position or would I be replacing somebody? Why didn’t the last employee work out? What does the growth ladder look like?
- Do some research to find out what the people in your desired position wear to work. This is a powerful tool, if you dress like you already belong there, it is easier for them to envision you there.
- When you are being interviewed, it is ok to be human (it is actually encouraged). Smile, laugh, and take a moment to answer a question. We want to see you, not a robot!
- Remember, you are in there because they deemed you qualified enough to be invited for an interview. The rest is up to you, show them why you are the best choice!
With each interview you go on, learn from it. If you happen not to get an offer, ask them why. When candidates ask me why, I always tell them the truth. If they were good enough for me to call and set up an interview for, I want them to land the next one whether it is through me or not. In my opinion and I am sure many others, it is the right thing to do.
Would like to hear feedback, funny interview stories, and success stories!
Make it a great day or not, the choice is YOURS!
Trifecta Executive Placement and Coaching