Practice Your Interview Technique
Try to anticipate the types of questions an employer is likely to ask. Every interview will address the position description; therefore, make sure you are familiar with what the position entails. Conduct some company-based research to determine what attitudes are important to its culture. The more you know about the company headed into the interview, the better off you will be.
Mock Interview Practice: warriorcareers.esu.edu
|Before||Know what you have to offer||Take a self-assessment (Kuder Journey).
Practice interview questions with a "mock interview."
|Know the employer service offering and/or product||Research of the organization is important. Visit their website and look for recent press releases. Understand their mission.
Review the job description.
|Know your purpose||Why are you a good match?|
|During||The first impression||Arrive early and present a professional appearance.|
|The introduction||Introduce yourself with an extended hand.|
|The questions||Listen carefully to the interviewer's questions.
Prepare your questions to ask at the end of the interview.
|After||Thank the interviewer||Write a thank-you note to everyone involved in the interview process.|
|Follow-up||Contact the company with any additional information mentioned in the interview.|
Behavior-based interviews are the most common. Be prepared to explain specific situations where you performed tasks similar to those you will do in the job. One strategy for job-seekers preparing for behavioral interviews is to use the STAR Technique, as outlined below.
|S - Situation or T- Task||Describe the situation that you were in or the task that you needed to accomplish. You must describe a specific event or situation, not a generalized description of what you have done in the past. Be sure to give enough detail for the interviewer to understand. This situation can be from a previous job, from a volunteer experience, or any relevant event.|
|A- Action||Describe the action you took and be sure to keep the focus on you. Even if you are discussing a group project or effort, describe what you did -- not the efforts of the team. Don't tell what you might do, tell what you did.|
|R- Results||Describe the results you achieved. What happened? How did the event end? What did you accomplish? What did you learn?|
Questions to Ask the Interviewer
- What are the long term objectives of this position? If I have performed well, what would you expect me to accomplish in a year?
- Describe your ideal candidate for this position.
- What are some of the difficult challenges I could face in this position or within this company?
- What are the opportunities for advancement and how do I train for higher positions?
- What is the company culture here and how has it developed?
An elevator pitch is a brief, persuasive speech that you use to spark interest in yourself. A good elevator pitch should last no longer than a short elevator ride of 20 to 30 seconds.
Example: Hi, my name is _____. I am a senior student at ESU concentrating in _____. Currently, I work at _____, where I developed strong (customer service, analytical, time management etc.) skills, and I am a member of _____ & _____ organizations, where I have held a leadership role. After researching your company, I learned that you have a current opening for a _____. This is the type of position I'd like to aspire to obtain after graduating this May. I noticed that the posting asked for _____ skills and my experience in _____ gave me the chance to develop those skills you desire. Do you think we can meet to explore the possibilities?
Just as you would customize a resume for different jobs, you should adjust your elevator pitch to your audience. You may have more than one elevator pitch to suit different individuals.
Phone interviews are a key step in any job application process. In an effort to narrow down the number of candidates, a company will often do multiple rounds of phone interviews. You should follow the same preparation steps for a telephone interview as you would for a face-to-face one. Here are some at-home tips for these interviews:
- Print out your resume! Have that and a copy of the job description sitting in front of you.
- Make sure you are at a computer. Do not get distracted by it during the call, but have the company website pulled up so that you can quickly get a piece of information if needed.
- Give yourself plenty of time before your next appointment for the day. Plan at least 30 minutes for each one. You do have to lasts a long time that probably means you are doing a great job!
- Dress as if it were a face-to-face interview. Wearing at least business casual attire will give you the feel of an important interview and put you in the right mind-set to succeed.
- Smiling during your answers will give your voice a jolt of excitement and energy that can often be lost over the phone.
Once again, remember to send a thank you note to your interviewer and follow-up as needed.Skype
When distance prohibits an in-person interview from taking place, Skype or other webcast interviews can be used instead. Here are a few tips to succeed:
- Make sure to check all of your settings before the interview starts. Try video calling a friend beforehand to make sure everything works properly.
- Suit up! Show the interviewer that you take the interview as seriously as you would if it were in person.
- Be conscious of your surroundings; make sure your location is quiet and appropriate. The backdrop of your video should not be distracting.
Same as telephone and in-person interviews, always send a thank-you note as a followup!Panel Interviews
- Direct your attention to each person on the panel. (Get each person’s name and ask for their business card). Look at each person as you introduce yourself and when you answer questions.
- Expect to repeat yourself simply because what is clear to one panel participant may need further clarification for another person. You may also find you are repeating information from earlier interviews.
- Find out who you’ll need to impress the most. Winning over the person most likely to reject you shows you have the ability to read the audience, as well as problem-solve on your feet.
- Be prepared for a least one “zinger question”. You can almost count on being asked a question that might not be asked of you in a 1:1 interview. Be prepared to answer numerous behavior-style questions.
- Thank all participants promptly at the conclusion of the interview and write thank you notes immediately. You have the advantage of having the interviews fresh in your mind, and will be appreciated for your promptness and attention to professional courtesy.
Once again, remember to send a note to your interviewer thanking them afterwards.Coffee Interviews
This is a way to meet a potential employee on a more casual basis to determine if there could be a role for the person in the company. For candidates, it’s a way to learn more about the company informally. Just coffee? Instead, it could be a step to a new job, so take time to prepare.
- Do your research on the company, mission, services and recent achievements.
- Be ready to talk about yourself and what you are looking for and how you can add value to the company.
- Ask questions about potential job openings, information, and career advice
- Dress is business-casual wear
- Bring several copies of your resume, a business card, and a list of references
- Have a pad of paper and pen to take notes
- Try not to order food
- Next step, reiterate your interest in moving forward in the hiring process
Once again, remember to send a thank you note to your interviewer afterwards.Thank-You Note
Send a thank-you letter to each person who interviewed you. A thank-you letter should be sent immediately following an interview; do not wait longer than 48 hours to send this correspondence.
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