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Interview Tips

What is an interview?

A two-way, formal conversation held for an employer to assess the candidacy of a job applicant and for an applicant to assess the job opportunity. Additionally, the employer sells the opportunity to the applicant and the applicant sells him/herself for the opening.

Preparing for the interview:

  • Conduct research on the position, organization and the field.
  • Know who you are, what you have to offer an employer and what you’re looking for.
  • Prepare questions to ask the interviewer and answers to questions that you may be asked.
  • Practice your interviewing skills.
  • Bring extra copies of your resume and your reference sheet with you.

What should I wear?

All applicants should look neat, clean and appropriate for the work environment they would like to enter. Wear a dark suit with a jacket; conservative styles and colors are recommended for most fields.
Also wear a conservative style shirt. Shoes should be dark, classic in style and always polished. Further information is available in our office, in libraries and on-line.

Dress For Success

What are some Dress for Success Books?

  • The New Professional Image: From Business Casual to the Ultimate Power Look by Susan Bixler
  • You Are What You Wear Published by William Thourlby
  • Your Executive Image by Victoria Seitz
  • What do all employers look for? Fit Competence Commitment
  • Interview Stages:1st Introduction2nd Information exchange3rd Closing

Interview Do’s and Dont's:

  • Do watch your nonverbal communication: smile, use strong eye contact and sit straight.
  • Do plan on arriving 10-15 minutes early and practice the commute.
  • Do send a follow-up thank-you letter.
  • Don’t chew gum, use vulgar language or engage in any other impolite behavior.
  • Don’t volunteer information about your private life.
  • Never answer with just a yes or no response
  • State why the answer is yes, or no. (Give a detailed explanation/provide examples.)
  • Ask questions that you have prepared beforehand, based on conducting your research.
  • Ask questions about what the interviewer says during the interview
  • Use the STAR technique for answering behavioral questions: (Situation, Tasks, Actions and Results.)

Questions Frequently Asked by Employers 

  • Can you tell me about yourself?
  • How would a friend describe you?
  • What is your major weakness?
  • Why should we hire you?
  • What are your major accomplishments?
  • What is your long-term career goal?
  • What is most important to you in a job?
  • Do you plan on continuing your studies?

Questions to Ask Employers

  • What are the main job responsibilities?
  • Can you describe the departmental structure?
  • How does your company develop its employees?
  • What are the company’s main priorities for the next few years?
  • What is the budget for this department?
  • Who would my supervisor be?
  • How long has this position been in existence?

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