Congratulations, you got the interview! So now what?
Now that you have the interview you wanted, it’s crucial to make the most of your meeting. Here is a list of things to do that will help.
- Dress for the part. The saying you never get a second chance to make a first impression is true. Be sure to show your future employer how serious you are about the job. Dress professionally. Even if the company practices a business casual work environment, wearing a business suit speaks volumes.
- Do your homework. There is nothing like interviewing someone who has no idea what your company does. Most employers have websites; take the time to read their mission statement and think about how their core values integrate with your own.
- Practice. Before the big day, ask a friend or family member to conduct a mock interview with you. Ask them to write down each “um” or “ugh” you say on a piece of paper. You will be amazed just how many people think out loud. Instead, take a beat before answering a question. This will help the interview become more authentic and confident, less hesitant.
- Ask questions. Every good interview has a conversational flow. Be prepared for your prospective employer to ask you if you have any questions for them. Never say no. Also, don’t make your question something negative like “I see you don’t offer stock options.” Instead, ask something about what makes their company so great: “I like that XYZ Corporation has been around for 20 years. What do you attribute that to?” Your interviewer will not only be impressed that you did your homework, but flattered at the compliment.
- Follow up. Upon exiting the interview, be sure to ask for a business card of every person you met. If you checked in with a receptionist, take a card from their desk as well. Hand-write thank you notes to each person and drop it in the mail as soon as possible. If you prefer the online approach, send a quick email thanking them for their time. This sends a message that you are personable and also serious about wanting the job. Also there is absolutely nothing wrong with a follow-up phone call or e-mail three days after your interview. Remember to keep your correspondence brief. Example: Thank you for taking the time to meet with me today about opportunities with XYZ Company. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Attaining a job interview in today’s economic times is not only challenging, it’s well populated. Utilizing these core steps will help you stand out from the crowd and reach your ultimate goal of getting the job you want.
Good luck and remember: there is only one you!