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Interview Strategies Student Engagement Center: Career Development and Internships 219 Reid Campus Center 509-527-5183.

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Presentation on theme: "Interview Strategies Student Engagement Center: Career Development and Internships 219 Reid Campus Center 509-527-5183."— Presentation transcript:

1 Interview Strategies Student Engagement Center: Career Development and Internships 219 Reid Campus Center

2 Workshop Objectives At the completion of this workshop, you will: Start to articulate individual strengths and goals while building an understanding of the big picture of your “professional identity” Begin to develop strategies for sharing your skills and experiences with a potential employer Demonstrate strong verbal and non-verbal communication skills in the context of an interview

3 Purpose of an Interview For the employer Evaluate your ability to express ideas Find out more about your skills/experience Determine if you would be a good match for the company’s needs For the candidate Expand on information in your resume/application Demonstrate communication and interpersonal skills Gather additional information about employer Determine if the company would be a good match for your needs

4 Setting Up the Interview A company representative will contact you Be flexible about schedules! Be professional and respectful The type of interview will be dependent on the company or organization Funding Location Procedures

5 Types of Interviews Screening interview Often by phone Good way for you and the company to collect preliminary information Selection interview Often “on-site,” can last several hours or even a whole day Involves multiple people within company or organization, panel style Other: Skype, Group Interviews

6 Steps to Prepare for the Interview Review your strengths, experiences, and goals Practice strategies to answer anticipated questions with thoughtful responses Research the organization Compile key questions to ask

7 Take Time for Self-Reflection What is your “Professional Identity”? What are your values, interests, personality characteristics, and skills? Be able to answer introspective questions, such as: What about this field/position/company interests me? Why am I qualified to do this job? What strengths do I bring to the table? What are my weaknesses? What am I doing to resolve those weaknesses? What do I hope to learn about this field/company? What do I hope to accomplish working for this company? What experiences have I had that will enhance my chances of success in this field/company? What kind of relationship would I like to have with my supervisor? What are my short term and long term goals?

8 Answering the Questions You might be asked… About your interest in or goals for the job or field. Example: “What led you to a career in teaching?” About your personality. Example: “How do you handle conflict situations at work?” Specific questions pulled from the position description. Example: “Please tell us about web development experiences you have had.” Behavioral and situational questions. Example: “Please tell us about a situation when you…” Out-of-the-box questions. Example: “On a scale of 1 to 10, how weird are you?” See the SEC’s website for sample interview questions.

9 Answering the Questions Respond to questions with brief but informative, relevant, and focused responses. Keep it professional and avoid negativity. Recall previous experiences: –Define the Problem or activity –Describe your Action –Describe your Result Don’t tell, DEMONSTRATE! Give specific examples and connect these examples to the skills the employer wants. Make sure you are answering the question that is asked.

10 Do Your Research Review company profile, history, documents, and reports Talk to current employees Search news archives for company news Talk to others in the industry

11 Asking Good Questions Some topics that make good questions: Challenges faced by department/company Interviewer’s history with the organization News item involving the organization New initiatives the company is taking on Procedures, structures, operations of the organization On your first interview, it is not a good idea to ask about salary or benefits. It is a good idea to ask about the timeline of the hiring process.

12 Interview Etiquette Dress Code Good rule: Consider everyday dress code of organization, then dress up one level, i.e. Business Casual  Business Formal Clothes: clean, pressed Hair: neat, clean Muted fragrances if you must, prefer no fragrance. What about piercings and tattoos?

13 Interview Etiquette Body Language Sit up Don’t fidget Make eye contact Smile! Timing Arrive 10 minutes early Know when the interview is over Verbal Always be respectful – to everyone you meet! Don’t bash anyone – It could come back to bite you! Say “Thank you!”

14 Let’s Give It a Try! Pair up with someone near you. Introduce yourself. Share with your partner the kinds of jobs/internships you want to obtain or tell him/her about the industry in which you are most interested. Take turns asking the questions on your paper.

15 Feedback Body Language: Did he/she make eye contact? Did he/she smile? What was his/her posture? Answering the Question: Was the response clear, concise, and relevant? Did he/she answer the whole question? Did he/she provide relevant examples? Overall, what did your partner do well? What could use some improvement?

16 Problem Solving: What Ifs… What if I don’t understand a question? Ask for clarification What if I can’t think of an answer? Pause, ask them to clarify the question for more time to think What if I forgot someone’s name? Ask for a business card What if I realize that I am not the right person for the job (or vice versa)? Don’t be rude, but be honest

17 How to Deal with Nervousness Before the Interview: Practice!! Answer questions out loud to friends or parents, or set up a mock interview. During the Interview: Don’t forget to breathe. Smile Make it a conversation. Interviews are not interrogations.

18 The Follow Up Always write a thank you note. s are appropriate for phone interviews Hand-written notes are appropriate for on-site interviews What if I don’t hear anything? If indicated timeline has passed, call! What to say?

19 Now What? What if I don’t get the job? Don’t panic or lose faith in yourself Follow up with interviewer to inquire about ways to improve interviewing skills What if I get the job? Be informed! Make thoughtful decisions – consult the important people in your life.

20 What SEC Resources Are Available? Individual advising appointments Mock interviews MyPlan – self-assessment testing Workshops like this one Resume and cover letters, networking, finding internships SEC website: Career Consultant Network

21 Questions?


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