Getting Ready to Interview

Know the organization and know yourself!  Be Ready to "Tell me about yourself!"

Just pressing your suit *** and memorizing facts on your resume will not prepare you for an interview! Experts suggest that you spend three to five hours researching the organization before your interview. You will impress the interviewer with your interest and preparation AND learn enough to decide if this job is right for you!

Dress professionally in a manner appropriate for the organization.  When in doubt about "business casual attire or the nature of the organization, a business suit for men and for women is always appropriate. Use this resource for a good brief overview of interview dress, look on Pinterest or watch YouTube videos.  

***Suit! What Suit?? - see Professional Dress on the menu for more guidance

 

Be sure to research this information - a good source:  LinkedIn!

  • What does the organization do? What are its products, or services,  mission and values?
  • What can you learn about its competition or the industry sector it is in? Profit/nonprofit, service, manufacturing, entrepreneur...
  • Where does your position fit into the organization?
  • What are the organization's long and short-term goals/challenges?

Get ready to STAR in a behavioral interview.

One of the most common interview techniques in use  is behavioral interviewing.  Based on the idea that past behavior predicts future behavior, employers will ask you to talk about experiences you have had and how you handled them to elicit information about your abilities. 

Think about the skills that are required for the job or may be key for your career field and prepare examples of times you have already demonstrated those skills.  Have you ever used your team work skills for a class project?  Your time management skills in a busy semester?  Then you're ready to STAR in your answers!  Use this technique to remember the examples you prepare.  Some writers call these "stories". 

  • Situation -- describe a situation you have been in - a challenging class, a demanding job, a stressful internship OR a
  • Task -- a project you completed (senior seminars), a committee you chaired,
  • Action - the action you took and
  • Results - what happened.  How did it turn out?

Be prepared to explain why you are right for the job.

  • Practice answers to these typical questions .
  • Know your skills and your education and how they apply to this position.
  • Develop examples of where you used those skills.
  • Be prepared with three or four examples of relevant experiences you've had or special projects you've completed. Personality traits – "I'm very hard-working" – are not enough.
  • Be honest but be positive and enthusiastic. 
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Tell me about yourself...

It's the first question in any interview, and it can be difficult to know exactly what to say.

Learn more.