Presentation on theme: "Sault College Career Essentials"— Presentation transcript:
1 Sault College Career Essentials Interviewing Skills
2 Supplement resume information The interview is an exchange of information between an employer and you, the candidate for a position. The primary objectives are to:Supplement resume informationShow that you understand your strengths and weaknesses and have a sense of directionEnable the employer to evaluate your personality and attitudes in terms of the demands of the organization and the positionAllow you to gain information about the organization and the jobGive you and the employer an opportunity to discuss the desirability of further contact or an offer of employmentCheck out the SJC Document“50 Greatest Interview Questions”
3 Interview Preparation First impressions count!Be punctual, look neat, clean, and well-groomedTurn off cell phones and pagersGreet each interviewer with respect and professionalismMake eye contact while speakingEmployers may engage you in small talk to break the ice – participate, but be aware that you are still being evaluatedSelect the appropriate clothing for the type of organization interviewing you-keep fashion accessories to a minimum
4 Appropriate Attire for Women A conservative dark navy or gray skirted wool-blend suit is the standardBeige, brown, charcoal, olive green and dark khaki, are also acceptable coloursPatterns such as solids, soft plaids, tweed and hounds tooth are preferableAvoid wearing a dressBlouses should be cotton or silk and should be white or another light colourShoes should be low-heeled and panty-house should be flawless and plainMakeup should be minimal, and in conservative tonesOpt for a briefcase rather than a purseLimit jewellery to subtle earrings, a simple necklace, and a watchLimit perfume and other strong smells due to possible allergies
5 Appropriate Attire for Men Try to find out what the attire is like where you’ll be interviewing and dress to match it or go one notch above thatA classic suit is appropriate for a business professional – however, a sport coat and pants can work if you are in retail or real estateIf you are in construction or a trade, casual slacks or jeans may be acceptableDark suits are always best, with a lighter shirtCharcoal, navy blue, and dark olive green are colours that work wellWear a light colour shirt and a tie that is darker than the shirtWear a silk tie that rests at your belt buckleBlack shoes are always bestLimit jewellery to a watch and a wedding ring if appropriateLimit cologne and other strong smells due to possible allergies
6 Interview Preparation Know yourself-what are your own values and goals?Know the company and the job-research the company and make notes of how your qualifications match those on the job advertisementKnow the interview details-where and when does it take place, and with whom?Consider points to stress-think of certain qualifications that the employer should know about, and times when you have achieved distinctive success
7 Interview ChecklistBring 2 copies of your resume, references, examples of your work, a pen and notepadArrive 15 minutes earlyWait outside the interview room until the employer invites you inIntroduce yourself to the interviewer with a firm handshakeMonitor the messages you are sending with your body language (e.g., fidgeting, slouching, hands on face, elbows on table)Maintain eye contact with the interviewerProject your voice using a positive toneBe aware of your facial expressions, as well as those of the interviewerMaintain a professional and courteous manner at all times
8 Interview ChecklistAvoid yes or no responses – provide specific examples of your skills, qualifications and experienceAnswer questions honestlyAvoid using slang expressions such as “ya” or “ya know”Listen carefully; ask for clarification if necessaryStay focused on the question and avoid long meandering responsesDo not chatter needlessly in order to fill silencesTake your time and think about your responsesTake notes if necessaryBe prepared to ask intelligent questionsAt the end of the interview, thank the interviewer and ask for a business card, then shake hands and leave
9 Types of Questions: Behaviour-Based Behaviour-based questions are designed to elicit information about how you have performed in the past. These questions usually begin with phrases such as the following:“Tell me about a time when…” “Give me an example of…”Here is a list of common behaviour-based interview themes – use these to prepare for potential questions:Working effectively under pressureHandling a difficult situation with a co-workerApplying good judgement and logic in solving a problemThinking creativelyCompleting a project on timePersuading team members to do things your way
10 The Situational/Hypothetical Question An interviewer will use these questions to establish how you would react to and handle real-life situations on the job. Here are some examples:If you had met your project deadlines and your direct supervisor was unavailable, describe how you would remain busy.During construction, a contractor unexpectedly finds a very large object in one of the trenches where he is about to dig. He requests that you tell him how to proceed. How would you deal with the situation?You have a conflict with someone who is senior to you and is not your supervisor. Describe how you would handle it.
11 The Skill-Testing Question Skill testing questions can be hands-on and are common in technical, scientific, and industrial/manufacturing fields. Here are some examples:Describe the difference between server-side and client-side scriptingProvide a brief description of a diodeExplain how to use an increment boreIf you don’t know the answer, indicate your interest in learning. You may want to supplement an answer with something else that you do know.
12 The Problem-Solving Question Examples of Problem-Solving questions would be:How many automobiles are there in Sault Ste. Marie?Estimate the size of the DVD rental market in Vancouver.Do not worry about the “right” answer, but to engage in a logical thought process that might lead you to the right answer. This 5-step process will help:Listen to what is being askedAsk clarifying questions to determine what the interviewer is askingRespond by explaining how you would gather data to make an informed decisionDiscuss how you would use that data to generate optionsBased on the data gathered, the available options, and your understanding of the position, explain how you would make an appropriate decision
13 Character QuestionsCan you identify three character traits that have made you successful?There are no right or wrong answers here – outline your positive traits that have aided your performance.Examples might include: Integrity, Ethics, Hard-Worker, Life-Long Learner, etc.What is your greatest weakness?Turn this question around and discuss an area that needs improvement, not an outright weakness.Give one or two examples of something that will not affect your ability to do the job. Reference a skill such as training in a certain area, something that can be easily acquired.
14 Difficult Questions and How to Handle Them How do you explain the employment gaps that appear on your resume?Here you must deliver a clear and credible response. You need to convince the employer that you will not jump ship or quit shortly after being hired. If you have been incarcerated or ill you need to be upfront and honest about it, but explain to the employer that you have recovered and are looking forward to making a contribution to the work environment.I see you have had many jobs over the last five years. What seems to be the problem?Today job chopping is an issue for many workers because of corporate restructuring. If your job was eliminated, explain the situation honestly.
15 Classic Interview Questions to Prepare for Tell me about yourself.What are your short-& long-term goals? How are you preparing to meet them?What is your mission statement?What do you think you will be looking for in the job following this position?Why do you feel you will be successful in this line of work?What supervisory or leadership roles have you had?What did you like/dislike about your last job?What motivates you to do a good job?What are your strengths/weaknesses?Why did you apply to our organization and what do you know about us?What courses did you like best/least? Why?What did you learn from your co-op or internship experiences?
16 Telephone Interviewing Tips Begin by saying “I know we are unable to see each other, and this may make things difficult. If I say something you don’t understand, please let me know”Have a list of questions and important points about you or the company handy for quick referenceWhen asked for this information, slowly recite the points you have writtenUse a cordless phone so you can walk around the room if neededDon’t interrupt the interviewer. Keep a pen and pencil handy so you can write down ideas and then address them when it’s your turn to talkKeep your resume available and handy at all times-be ready to provide examples of achievements and accomplishments with confidenceKeep answers short – about 30–45 seconds for answering the average question
17 Overall, Employers are Looking for Employees Who: Are punctual, arriving on time and staying until quitting timeAre dependableHave a good attitudeHave drive, energy and disciplineAre there for more than a pay chequeAre self-disciplined, well organized, motivated and good at time managementCan work on a computerAre committed to team workAre flexible and can respond to/adapt when circumstances changeAre project- and goal orientedHave creativity and are good at problem solving
18 Your Own QuestionsYou may have some questions that should be answered during the interview:What does this job involve? You want to understand exactly what tasks will be asked of you, so that you can determine if they’re something you would really like to do.What are the skills a top employee in this job would have to have? You want to know if your skills match those in order to do this job well.Are these the kinds of people I would like to work with, or not? Do not ignore your intuition if it tells you that you would not be comfortable working with these people. You want to know if they have the kind of personality that would make it easy for you to accomplish your work, and if they share the values which are important to you.
19 Making a Graceful ExitChoose the right words for a graceful exit, for example:“I hear that you are a great company to work for. I think we would make a good match.”“What you have told me about the job really excites me. I want to be part of your team.”“This sounds like an excellent opportunity. I believe I could make a great contribution here.”Do not say things like “You’ve gotta have me!” or put time limits on the employers. You will be eliminated for using these tactics.