Congratulations! Your resume has been reviewed, you received a call for an interview, and it is time to begin the process of seeing if the company is a fit for you and if you are a fit for the company. The first step to an interview is research the company and find out their history and where the company is headed in the future. It is not a good idea to go to an interview and not be familiar with the products or services they sell and where their headquarters is.
The second step is to research the position you applied for and align your skill sets to the position when asked questions. If you are weak in a particular area in terms of not having experience in that particular job function and your past experience can’t cover any of the skills then it is best to say that you learn real fast, go into detail of how you are familiar with that function, and, if applicable, how your education from college courses applied to that area.
The third step is to practice interview questions and have prepared answers. It is important to be flexible in the prepared answers because you want to answer the question the interviewer asked you and not the question from the prepared answer which may be slightly different. Practice is the key to doing well during an interview.
Arrive 15 minutes early for the interview and be courteous to everyone you meet. The fourth step to successful interviewing is that during the interview don’t ramble, answer the questions directly, give examples when appropriate, and don’t appear desperate. The best interviewees even get rusty when they re-enter the workforce or seeking new employment and haven’t interviewed in years. Performing well during an interview is a skill that has to be worked on. Sometimes if an interview didn’t go well you have to look at it as practice for the next interview because you will usually see dramatic improvement.
The fifth element to interviewing well is asking questions afterwards. It is best to have at least two questions to ask. This will show the managers that you have interest in the job. It is also good to ask them when are they planning to make a hiring decision for the position. It is important to tell the interviewers that you are interested in the position because you don’t want them to wonder if you have a desire to work there or is this going to be another paycheck. The sixth step to an interview is to send a follow up letter usually via email with 72 hours of the interview. The seventh step is to make a follow up call to the interviewer within one to two weeks after the interview.