Need help preparing for a job interview?
Here are some basics:
We know: How to Prepare for a Job Interview
You've finally landed an interview. What steps should you take to prepare?
1. Research the Company
Use the internet or and the public library to look up the company. Be sure to ask the librarian to recommend reference books. Find out:
2. Research the Position for Which You're Applying
Use the job description, any inside contacts you may have, and your company research to help you determine
3. Rehearse Giving Answers to Questions About Yourself
Think of professional characteristics that are required by the job, such as meeting deadlines, clear communication, working with others, etc. Think of examples to illustrate how you have those characteristics and skills and how you have used them in the past. Make a list of your past accomplishments in various areas (school, work, volunteering), so that you can recall them easily to illustrate a point.
4. Practice and Be Responsive
Practice giving answers to questions about yourself aloud, so you become comfortable with how to formulate the answers to questions. See if you can get someone to rehearse with you.
Try to be specific when you answer questions about yourself. If you like working with cars, or people, or animals and that's a part of the job, say why---what interests you about them. Give examples. Try to focus on your strengths. Be positive. Tell the truth, but don't turn the interview into a confessional about your past.
5. Some Questions to Get You Started
Here are some common interview questions provided by the Labor Department to help you:
6. Dress for Success
On balance, under-dressing in probably worse than overdressing. Dress up in a way you would for a very important meeting at work. Keep you hair neat. Avoid strong perfume and too much make up or jewelry because they can be distracting.
7. Be Prepared to Ask a Few Questions Yourself
In many interviews, you are encouraged to ask questions at some point. Or, you may want to try, even if no one offers you the opportunity. Often, questions show your interest in the company and the job.
Here are a few questions you might ask, suggested by the Department of Labor:
8. What NOT to ask in an initial interview.
You should probably avoid asking about salary and benefits in the initial interview. Usually, those issues can be addressed after the first round. For the most part, these questions are better asked once the company appears interested in hiring you.