After sending out job application packets and waiting for weeks to hear from potential employers, getting the call for a coveted job interview is exciting. That momentary elation may subside quickly when you think about the stress that comes with the interview process. Follow these important steps to prepare yourself for any job interview.
1. Practice Your Responses
Prior to the big day, look up common job interview questions, and decide on your responses. Consider your greatest strengths, ponder your weaknesses and think about your future goals when crafting answers.
2. Get to Know the Interview Panelists
Attempt to find out the names of the individuals on your interview panel. Look them up on the company website, and check out their LinkedIn profiles. Learn about their roles in the company, backgrounds and interests so you can easily establish a rapport during the job interview.
3. Research the Organization
Learn everything you can about the company before going to the interview. Learn about the organizational hierarchy, the company's history and its competition. Casually work some of the information into your interview responses to demonstrate your knowledge.
4. Try Out Their Products or Services
Show your dedication and preparedness by testing the company's products or services prior to your job interview. Check out the organization's Facebook page to see what other customers are saying. Work the constructive criticism into your interview responses to show how you can help the company solve a problem.
5. Read About the Industry
Brush up on your knowledge of the industry. Read articles about industry trends and peruse recent headlines to get a better sense of how this position contributes to the industry.
6. Study Your Resume
Know your resume like the back of your hand so you're prepared to answer any question the interviewers throw at you. Use it to help draw responses to the interviewers' questions, but provide greater detail by using examples of past achievements or work experiences.
7. Choose Your Interview Attire
Make sure you know the company's general dress code before you decide what to wear to your job interview. If you're in doubt, dress more professionally than you might for the job. Make sure you look polished and professional on interview day.
8. Bring the Right Documents
Show up to the interview with several copies of your resume and a list of references. If you have letters of recommendation, bring enough for every interviewer on the panel. Consider creating a portfolio to provide examples of your work.
9. Prepare Your Own Questions
You shouldn't be the only one answering questions during a job interview. Come up with a few thoughtful questions to ask the panelists. This shows your interest in the organization and helps you determine whether or not you're genuinely interested in the position.
You can never be too prepared for a job interview. Following these important steps allows you to show your enthusiasm and lets your confidence shine, demonstrating to the hiring manger that you value his time and deserve to be the chosen candidate.
Photo courtesy of Thomas S McDonald at Flickr.com