06 September 2008

Are You Prepared For The Interview

You have read my previous articles on getting yourself prepared for any interview opportunity. So, what have you done so far?

There are a few steps you need to take to prepare yourself for the interview. Remember them always.

  • Research prospective companies and industries

You need to do the research because you need to win the opportunity!

- You can use the internet to do your research. These days most companies have their own websites with information of their businesses and industries. You can use the friendly search engines to help you.

- Your local library may also keep some annual reports or news about the companies you want.

- If it is a small local company, you can ask for information from your local network. The receptionist can also provide some useful information about the company.

- You can get a little information from the company advertisements. These advertisements provide the public valuable insight into the company products, services and culture.

- Newspapers and other publications like magazines can also help to provide some useful information.

Concentrate on useful information such as products/services, target markets, challenges, competitions, company financials and industry trends. Identify the strengths and weakness of the company too. You can ask questions about the company using the information you have gathered. This shows you have great interest of the company.

  • Answer the common job interviewing questions

In one of my earlier articles, I have listed some of the possible questions interviewers or hiring managers like to ask. The same questions will be listed here again. Brainstorm on all of them. Jot down the answers.

× Why are you interested in this position/job?

× What are your greatest strengths?

× What is your greatest weakness?

× Why do you think you are ideal for this position/job?

× Give us the highlights of your resume.

× Tell me more about yourself.

× What are your interests?

× What are your short and long term goals?

× What motivates you to succeed?

× Describe your ideal job.

× Describe traits you want in an ideal job and company.

× What qualities do you think are important to be successful in this job?

× What previous experience has helped you to develop the skills necessary for this job?

× Can you lead a team?

× Describe how you work in a team. (As a leader or team player)

× What was your greatest challenge and how did you overcome it?

× Is there any reason why we should we hire you over other candidates?

× What are your compensation expectations? (What is your expected salary?)

× Do you have questions about this position?

× Why are you leaving your current position?

× What is your definition of success?

× Can you explain why you choose to work as a _______?

× Are you willing to accept a lower salary?

× Have you ever held a leadership role?

× How did you motivate your team to succeed?

× How do you prioritize when you are given too many tasks to accomplish?

× Can you conform to company policies that you dislike?

× Do you set goals for yourself?

× How did you accomplish your goals?

× What is your goal for the next five years?

Well, to tell the truth, you need to be able to answer these questions without any hesitation. Of course, during the half an hour interview, hiring managers will not ask all the questions. However, you must be ready.

  • Have lots of interview practice. Rehearse and role play interviews with your friends and family members. Be serious. Do not crack jokes during the sessions. You can also practice in front of a full length mirror. With this you are able to work on your smile, posture, facial expression as well as appearance.
  • This is the checklist after you have done the things listed.

× Check again the name(s) of the interviewer(s). Do not get them mixed-up or wrong. Ask for the title of the interviewer(s) e.g. Ms, Mrs, Mr and so on.

× Get your direction to the company right too. You do not want to lose your way and end up being late for the interview. Time is precious, so is the opportunity.

× Plan your journey so that you can arrive early. You will not panic if you arrive earlier than the appointed time.

× Pick out your interview attire in advance so that you will not waste lots of precious time in matching colors.

× Your appearance puts a weight in the interview. Wear a suit of formal attire, but keep it simple. Popular business colors are black, dark blue, and grey. Make sure your shoes match your attire too!

Well, now is the time you get yourself ready. Be busy!

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