Interview Preparation

When an interviewer asks you questions about yourself and your career, you will need to answer in a clear, concise and positive manner. This does not happen by chance, but by preparation and practice.

It doesn't matter how many skills you have acquired or achievements you have attained if you cannot effectively communicate who you are and what you have to offer to a potential employer. In addition, you need to know the company and understand the position well-enough to confidently claim that you are the right match.

10 Adjectives

It can be very helpful to have on the tip of your tongue ten adjectives or so that describe yourself professionally. You should not have to search too hard for responses to such questions as "Give me two good reasons to hire you" or "What one quality about you will make you stand out among all the people I have interviewed?" Be prepared to talk about yourself: your strengths and weaknesses, what you liked & disliked about each job, your success and accomplishments.

Selling Points

Know what it is about yourself that you should bring to the forefront for this position and company. What specific strengths and skills do you need to get across to the interviewer before the interview is over? An interview is not the place for shyness or too much modesty.

Your Resume

Know (by heart) your titles, promotions, employment dates, supervisors, salary history as well as responsibilities and accomplishments. You should never have to refer to your resume during an interview. Know all the "why"s as well, such as "Why did you go to that college?" or "Why did you pick the career you did?" or "Why did you go from 'company one' to 'company two?'"

Questions

Well-thought out questions can show how much you already know, how interested you are in the opportunity and can give you the answers you need to make your own decision. However, the focus of the meeting should be on the details of your experience, skills, strengths and qualifications rather than on the details you know about the company.

Why?

Know why, at this time, you are seeking this opportunity. Why is the job right for you right now? What are your short-term and long-term goals and how does this position fit in with them?

Before and as early on in the interview as possible, you should gain as much information about the position and the company as you can. The sooner you understand the responsibilities and requirements, the sooner you can discuss how your background and experience applies.

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