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Successful Strategies for Interviewing

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Presentation on theme: "Successful Strategies for Interviewing"— Presentation transcript:

1 Successful Strategies for Interviewing
Job Interviews

2 Preparing for an Interview
Research the company Study yourself to identify how your qualifications match the job Be ready to provide clear, specific evidence of your qualifications Plan a professional appearance Plan to arrive several minutes early Practice

3 Effective Interviewee Behaviors
Look interested — attentive posture and eye contact Avoid negative mannerisms Be able to avoid answering illegal questions without offending the interviewer

4 Effective Interviewee Behaviors
Opening Greet the interviewer by name with a smile, direct eye contact, a firm handshake Wait for the interviewer to ask you to be seated Sit erect and lean forward slightly to convey interest

5 Effective Interviewee Behaviors
Body of the Interview Explain how your qualifications relate to the job requirements using specific examples Ask pertinent questions that communicate intelligence and interest in the company Allow the interviewer to initiate a discussion of salary and benefits Be prepared to provide a general salary range for applicants with your qualifications

6 Effective Interviewee Behaviors
Closing the interview Watch for cues the interview is ending Rise, accept the interviewer’s handshake and communicate enthusiasm Express appreciation for the interview and say you are eager to hear from the company

7 Research the Company Why? How? To show your interested
Provides an edge over other candidates You may be asked any of the following questions: What do you know about our company? Why do you want to work here? What do you think it takes to be successful in this career? How? Company websites Contact the company and ask for literature or details about the position you are applying for Networking

8 Practice Interviewing
Step 1: Prepare answers to common interview questions Step 2: Rehearse with a friend or videotape yourself

9 2 Types of Interview Questions
Traditional Ex. “Tell me about yourself.” Ex. “Do you prefer to work alone or in a group?” Behavioral Used to predict future on-the-job behaviors Behavioral interviewing is a relatively new mode of job interviewing. Employers such as AT&T and Accenture (the former Andersen Consulting) have been using behavioral interviewing for about 15 years now, and because increasing numbers of employers are using behavior-based methods to screen job candidates, understanding how to excel in this interview environment is becoming a crucial job-hunting skill. The premise behind behavioral interviewing is that the most accurate predictor of future performance is past performance in similar situations. Behavioral interviewing, in fact, is said to be 55 percent predictive of future on-the-job behavior, while traditional interviewing is only 10 percent predictive. Behavioral-based interviewing is touted as providing a more objective set of facts to make employment decisions than other interviewing methods. Traditional interview questions ask you general questions such as "Tell me about yourself." The process of behavioral interviewing is much more probing and works very differently. In a traditional job-interview, you can usually get away with telling the interviewer what he or she wants to hear, even if you are fudging a bit on the truth. Even if you are asked situational questions that start out "How would you handle XYZ situation?" you have minimal accountability. How does the interviewer know, after all, if you would really react in a given situation the way you say you would? In a behavioral interview, however, it's much more difficult to give responses that are untrue to your character. When you start to tell a behavioral story, the behavioral interviewer typically will pick it apart to try to get at the specific behavior(s). The interviewer will probe further for more depth or detail such as "What were you thinking at that point?" or "Tell me more about your meeting with that person," or "Lead me through your decision process." If you've told a story that's anything but totally honest, your response will not hold up through the barrage of probing questions.

10 General Interview Questions
Tell me about your recent work experience(s). Why did you leave your previous place of employment? Why are there gaps in your employment history? What strengths and weaknesses would you bring to this position? What is your understanding of this position and what skills do you bring to the position? What types of job responsibilities do you find to be most rewarding? Why? What types of job responsibilities do you find to be most frustrating? Why?

11 Behavioral Interview Questions
Describe a situation in which you were able to use persuasion to successfully convince someone to see things your way. Describe a time when you were faced with a stressful situation that demonstrated your coping skills. Give me an example of a time when you set a goal and were able to meet or achieve it. Give me a specific example of a time when you had to conform to a policy with which you did not agree. Tell me about a time when you had to go above and beyond the call of duty in order to get a job done. Tell me about a time when you had too many things to do and you were required to prioritize your tasks.

12 Behavioral Interview Questions
S-A-R Method Situation Action Result Question: Describe a situation in which you were able to use persuasion to successfully convince someone to see things your way. Answer using S-A-R Method: Recently my company asked for bids on a phone system for our new college campus. Two companies came in very close with their bids, and most of my department wanted to go with a vendor that we have used in the past. After I looked over the proposals, it was clear that this was the wrong decision. So, I talked individually with each member of our staff and was able to change their minds and get the best product that would save money and provide the highest quality.

13 S-A-R Activity Directions: Select 1question, from the list of behavioral questions, and answer them using the S-A-R method. Put a circle around the situation, a square around the action and underline the results to distinguish each step of the S-A-R method. Please answer the questions on a clean sheet of notebook paper. When students finish, have a few students write examples of answers they wrote on the board to demonstrate the S-A-R Method.

14 Illegal Interview Questions
National origin and religion Age Disabilities, health conditions, and physical characteristics not reasonably related to the job Marital status, spouse’s employment, or dependents Arrests Legal questions about age would be: Are you at least 18/21 years of age? Disabilities: Are you able to perform the task required for this position? Marital status: Are you willing to relocate? Are you willing to travel? Arrests: Have you ever been convicted of a Are you a convicted felony?

15 Interviewee Questions
What is a typical day like? What type of people would I be working with and for? What is the turnover rate of people in this job? How would you describe initial and on-going training for this position? How do you expect the company to change in the next ten years? When can I expect to hear from you about your decision?

16 Interviewer and Interviewee Questions Activity
Directions: Search the internet and find 10 questions (other than the one’s previously listed) an interviewer may ask during an interview. Directions: Search the internet and find 10 questions (other than the one’s previously listed) an interviewee can ask during an interview.

17 Appropriate Attire First impressions Competitive edge
Marketing a product You CAN overdress for an interview Dress to fit the job’s culture Classic advice: “Dress 10 percent better than you ordinarily would” “Dress for the position you’d like to have, not for the one you do have, so you’ll be seen as promotable.” “Dress the best your ever going to look in the job you want.”

18 Appropriate Attire Attention to detail
Clean and polished conservative dress shoes Well-groomed hairstyle Cleaned and trimmed fingernails No body odor, minimal cologne or perfume No visible body piercing Well-brushed teeth and fresh breath No gum, candy, or other objects in your mouth Minimal jewelry

19 Tips for Women Conservative colors:
Black Dark Navy Brown/Beige Gray Skirt length should be a little above the knee Hair should be worn up, out of your face Minimal make-up Lipstick and nail polish in conservative tones (natural colors) Jewelry One set of earrings, and no more than two rings The standard job interviewing attire for women is a conservative dark navy or gray skirted wool blend suit. Job experts and employers seem split on the notion of pants suits, so a skirted suit is a safer choice. [For more information, read: The Great Pantsuit vs. Skirtsuit Debate: What Should Women Wear to a Job Interview?.] Other conservative colors -- such as beige or brown -- are also acceptable. Red is a power color. A blazer with blouse and skirt is a possible second choice to a suit. You should always wear a jacket. Skirt length should be a little below the knee and never shorter than above the knee -- no night club attire here. Avoid wearing a dress (unless accented with a jacket). Blouses should be cotton or silk and should be white, or some other light color. Shoes should be low-heeled. Make-up should be minimal, with lipstick and nail polish conservative tones. Pantyhose should be flawless (no runs) and conservative in color. Do not have excessive body odor or cologne. You should opt for a briefcase rather than a purse.

20 Appropriate Attire

21 Tips for Men Conservative colors:
Black Dark navy Gray White long-sleeved button-down dress shirt with a simple tie (that matches suit) Belt should match shoes Facial hair should be neatly trimmed No jewelry The standard job interviewing attire for men is a conservative dark navy or gray two-piece business suit (of natural fibers, such as wool, if possible), a white long-sleeved button-down dress shirt, a conservative silk tie (that matches the colors in your suit), and nicely polished dress shoes. If you do not own a suit, or the company is a bit more informal, then you should wear a conservative sports coat (no plaids or wild patterns and preferably a dark color), nicely pressed dress slacks, a white long-sleeved button-down shirt, a conservative silk tie, and nicely polished dress shoes. Your belt should always match your shoes. If you have a beard or mustache, your facial hair should be neatly trimmed. If you have any visible body parts pierced, most experts recommend removing all jewelry, including earrings. Do not have excessive body odor or cologne.

22 Appropriate Attire

23 After the Interview Take some time to review the interview while it is fresh in your mind Interviewing is a learnable skill, use the experience to help you in the future Ask yourself: How could you have better answered the questions? Where did you succeed? Where did you fail? What will you do differently next time?

24 After the Interview A thank-you letter is essential! Get it in the mail the day of or the day after the interview Avoid excessive enthusiasm Keep your note cordial and brief Thank the interviewer for inviting you to the interview Say it was a pleasure to meet him or her Mention something you learned during the interview and assure them of your continued interest in the position - provided you are still at all interested See handout for more information on what to include in a thank-you letter.

25 Sources

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