1. Arrive 5-10 minutes early. Do not arrive 30 minutes early as it pressures the Interviewer. Remember, this interview is for you, not for them.
2. Go to the restroom before the interview. Be certain your appearance is in order. Discard any gum.
3. Dress for the culture of the company that is interviewing you.
4. When the interviewer greets you, stand as they enter the room. Shake his or her hand firmly. If a woman is interviewing you, do not offer her a dainty handshake. If you are shaking a man’s hand, it’s not a contest. Shake firmly with either party as before.
5. When walking into a conference room, wait for the interviewer to use gestures as to where you should sit. Never sit at the head of a conference room table.
6. Sit down. Keep your hands to your sides or on the arm rests. Keep you pen on the table or in your pocket. Do not click your pen.
7. Remember to be authentic.
8. Do not fold your arms or lean back in the chair. Sit forward and act interested.
9. Make eye contact often. Leave questions for later. Do not interrupt.
10. Craft your answers to be short, clear and concise. Whenever necessary, elaborate on your response.
11. Allow yourself to smile and appear positive.
12. Do not ask questions regarding parking, lunch breaks or anything that appears it’s “all about your needs.”
The 7 questions that may set you apart.
1. Tell me about yourself question: Use the most important information about yourself. I am presently working at X as an insurance agent and I'm selling life, property, casualty and auto to clients in the 9 states I am licensed in. I love what I do and I've recently been awarded salesperson of the month or I am an electrical engineer who has spent the past 8 years working on corporate HVAC equipment. Or I am discharging from the US Military next month and have become extremely proficient in the areas of X. I presently manage a group of 50 civilian contractors. Or, I recently became separated from the US Military where I was a Major overseeing the entire computer security department. I am certified in X and Y and really like the idea that your computer security department is X & Y. This shows the interviewer you’ve done your homework.
2. What experiences do you have that makes you a good fit? Here you should highlight your experience as it matches the job descriptions.
3. What are your weaknesses? If your weakness are speaking in front of a large group, you could phrase it as “I tend to be someone who needs a bit of extra time when talking to an audience, so prior to a conference, I review extra tips to improve my performance. Turn negatives into positives.
4. Why are you interested in this opportunity? Craft your answer to appeal to the interviewer Again, companies want to hire people who are passionate about the job, so you should have a great answer about why you want the position. First, identify a couple of key factors that make the role a great fit for you then share why you love the company.
5. Where do you see yourself in five years? If asked this question, be honest and specific about your future goals, but consider this: A hiring manager wants to know a) if you've set realistic expectations for your career, b) if you have ambition (a.k.a., this interview isn't the first time you're considering the question), and c) if the position aligns with your goals and growth. Your best bet is to think realistically about where this position could take you and answer along those lines. And if the position isn’t necessarily a one-way ticket to your aspirations? It’s OK to say that you’re not quite sure what the future holds, but that you see this experience playing an important role in helping you make that decision.
6. Why should we hire you? Match your qualifications with their job description and sum it up.
7. Do you have any questions for me? This is where your research comes in. You can highlight your knowledge of their company by talking about 3 notable mentions. Good questions include why is the position open or can you tell me a little more about the current situation and what the first challenges would be for the new person or what or how many people would I be responsible for locally, regionally, nationally? Naturally, do not ask these questions if the interviewer already offered them to you during the interview.
8. If you are interviewing with management, ask about the industry and future projections. This is your chance to demonstrate your industry knowledge.
Resumes Do’s & Don’ts
1. Center your name on the top of your front page. Your resume should appear in 10-12 pt. font. When typing your name, use bold 14 pt. font to make your name to stand out.
2. Omit your physical address. Place your city, state, zip code only. This protects you against identify theft.
3. Adding your LinkedIn email and creating a professional email is the standard. Do not use a funny or controversial email address. Keep it professional.
4. For tenured candidates, education belongs at the end of the resume. For <3 years of experience candidates, place the education under their name. If you are still in school, type in anticipated date of graduation.
5. Summary and Objectives – Keep them short and sweet < 3 lines. Keep it humble and authentic. The summary should contain your specialty, team size managed, scope of business and industry.
6. It’s good to keep your resume to 1 page, but very acceptable to use two pages. No more than 3 pages please!
7. Always start your resume with your most current position. If unemployed within the past 3-6 months, you can opt to maintain 2012-Present and explain later.
8. It’s easy to type responsibilities included: try thinking about accomplishments.
9. Use numbers and percentages. For example, saved the organization $100,000 by streamlining the process or reduced overhead by 75%.
10. Recognize that the phrase "References available upon request" is highly optional because it is a given that you will provide references upon request. The line can serve the purpose of signaling: "This is the end of my resume," but if you are trying to conserve space, leave it off.
11. Leave white space including 1” margins at the top, bottom, right and left.
1. Don’t place in your resume the reason for leaving your last employer. You are allowing the reader to judge you without explanation.
2. Don’t lie on your resume. In the cyber world, there are many ways to catch you.
3. Don’t use MS Word Templates. For a recruiter, it’s challenging to read as everything appears in columns and editing is difficult. Use tabs, not spaces, use the tools afforded to you in Word.
4. Do not Justify or Center the resume as this can result in 5-7 spaces between some words. Make everything flush left.
5. Do not use pronouns (I, we, me) in your resume.
6. Do not exceed 3 -5 bullets per job position.
7. Do not leave any typographical errors in your final draft. Double Spell-Check and print your resume as opposed to reading it on-line to see what it really looks like.
8. Do not insert your high school on the resume. Only college. If no college, still leave High School out.
9. Do not place an objective on your resume, only place summaries. Space is limited.
Congratulations, you’ve been notified you have an interview. There are a few things you should always do to prepare properly for a telephone interview. A telephone interview is the first step towards receiving an invite to an in-person interview. Therefore, you need to be prepared.
1. Locate the job description you applied for. Have it in front of you during the phone interview.
2. Always have web access. Open a link to the company’s website in your browser. Never let the interviewer hear you typing.
3. Disable extra phone features such as alerts, alarms, ringers, call waiting, etc. Sounds and text messages can be very distracting to both parties.
4. Use a landline or home phone whenever possible.
5. Make the call from home. Try not to accept a telephone interview while driving as it may cause accidents and distract you as well as lose service as you enter new zones.
6. If you have any pets, place them in a quiet room. In the event the doorbell rings, they won’t hear the dog barking and it won’t distract you either. Get rid of those distractions.
7. Answer the telephone in your name. For Example. Hello, this is Avery.
9. Watch your body language. Sit up straight at a desk. You should not lay in front of a muted TV.
10. Dress up in professional attire. It builds confidence.
11. Say thank you.
12. Don’t bring up salary and expectations. Allow the interviewer to pose the question. If asked, you should be prepared with an answer.
13. Don’t talk too much. Give yourself 3 seconds before answering any question. Leave out the “ums” and Ahhs” and use “I see” or “I understand” instead.
14. Soothe your throat. Have a spoon of honey or a cough drop before the interview.
15. Have some canned answers typed and in front of you. For example, “tell me about yourself” question is simple. You will not say that you are married with 3 children. You will say “I am currently employed at XYZ as a ______ and you are doing XYZ.” You will not start off with “I am unemployed.” You would say I was employed at XYZ as an _____ and I was performing XYZ and I am presently seeking new employment. This sentence gives the interviewer the impression you may be separated from employment or that you are currently working.
16. At the end of the interview, let the interviewer know you are very serious about the position and that you want the job.