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Interviewing for Success

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Presentation on theme: "Interviewing for Success"— Presentation transcript:

1 Interviewing for Success
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2 Workshop Outline A Few Words About Interviewing
What Employers Are Seeking Preparation The Interview Process After the Interview Tips for Successful Interviewing Final Comments

3 A Few Words About Interviewing…
Being invited to interview is a significant accomplishment. And.. the competition becomes more fierce. It is not always the most qualified person who gets the job. It is often someone who meets the minimum qualifications interviews the best appears to be the best “fit” with future co-workers

4 Key Skills and Qualities: Top Qualities/Skills Employers Seek
Communication skills (verbal & written) Honesty/Integrity Interpersonal skills Strong work ethic Teamwork skills Organizational skills Analytical Skills Motivation/Initiative Flexibility/Adaptability Computer skills Detail oriented Leadership skills Self-confidence HIGHLIGHT THESE QUALITIES/SKILLS IN ANSWERS AND EXAMPLES (Source: Job Outlook 2007, National Association of Colleges and Employers)

5 Planning Research Planning Practice Assess yourself
Research the employer and the position Planning Take care of logistics Prepare your professional attire Practice

6 Assessing Yourself Identify your skills and abilities
Analyze your strengths and weaknesses. When discussing weaknesses say what you are doing to work on them Stick to work relevant weaknesses rather than personal Be ready to give specific examples

7 Research employer and position
Company Mission/Values Products and services Organizational structure including locations and size Major competitors Financials: revenue profit etc. Position Overall responsibilities Specific tasks Required skills and experience Be prepared to say why you want to work there and why you are the best candidate for the job.

8 What to Wear: Women Men Both Conservative loose fitting suit Dark suit
No low cut blouses or tops Pantyhose Closed toe dress shoes Men Dark suit Appropriate socks (e.g. not white athletic socks Polished dress shoes Both No gum chewing Minimal jewelry Minimal cologne/perfume Cover tattoos and remove any piercing other than earlobes

9 Logistics Do you know where you are going?
Where is the building and the office? Where should you park? Is parking free? Do you know how long it will take? Assume the worst case scenario and plan to be early In the vicinity 45 minutes in advance In the office 10 minutes in advance Do a dry run of the trip.

10 Practice Practice Practice
Review possible questions and formulate answers. Have examples ready Do not totally memorize answers Develop a list of questions to ask your interviewer/s Practice with a friend or set up a Practice Interview with Career Services Check out the Career Services website for sample question to practice and to ask employers

11 The Interview Process Introductions Questioning Wrap-up
A smile and firm handshake are important. Greet the interviewer/s by name. Exchange of small talk, such as the weather Questioning Wrap-up

12 The Interview Process Introductions Questioning Wrap-up
Interviewer lead The main part of the interview Questions about your skills, experience and personality You take the lead You are interviewing the company as well Be prepared with questions Wrap-up

13 The Interview Process Introductions Questioning Wrap-up
Ask about the next step and when you will hear from them Ask for the job or the next round of interviews Let them know you are interested and look forward to whatever the next step is.

14 Sample Questions – About yourself
Tell me about yourself. Tell them more than what is on your resume What are your major strengths? Based on the employer and position What is a weakness that you have? Be ready to admit to one Show how you are working to improve in this area. What was an important decision or event in your life? Don’t get TOO personal. Add how the decision or event changed you, made you stronger, taught you an important life lesson, etc.

15 Behavioral questions Require that you answer with specific examples from the past Prepare examples in advance Prepare examples that show you in a good light If the example is negative – state what you learned or changed due to the experience Examples: Tell me about a time when…. …you had to work with a difficult employee …you were not as effective as you would have liked …where you showed leadership

16 Organizational Questions
Shows that you did your research Examples Why do you want to work for us? Why are you interested in this field? What would be your greatest contribution to our operation? What qualifications do you have that would make you successful with us?

17 Questions you can ask employers
Focus on job responsibilities and organizational culture and structure Avoid discussing benefits and salary unless the employer mentions them first Examples What kinds of people do you usually look for? Can you tell me about your own experience with the company/organization? What have you liked most/least about working for this company? How will I be trained/evaluated? What do you see ahead for this organization in the next ten years?

18 Handling Salary issues
If they ask for your salary requirements Research the position so you know a reasonable salary range State a salary range rather than a number What if they don’t mention it? It is best to wait for an offer before you discuss salary It is OK to ask for more money Make sure your request is reasonable Be prepared to discuss why you should be offered more They may say no - you can then accept the job at the lower salary.

19 Handling illegal questions
What are illegal questions? Age Marital status Citizenship Answer the intent of the question, not the actual question. Ask what their concern is.

20 After the Interview Evaluate the interview; what do you want to improve? Write a thank-you letter or within two days. If interviewed by a committee, send one thank you to the Chair, and ask that he/she extend your thanks to the others. Follow up if you do not hear Ask where they are in their selection process and if they need any more information Accept an offer verbally and in writing. If rejected, ask for constructive feedback and work on weak areas.

21 Interviewing tips Attitude and appearance Be early
Be friendly and courteous Show enthusiasm and interest Maintain appropriate eye contact Be aware of your body language Show your sense of humor Show confidence in your abilities Don’t present an aggressive, overbearing, or conceited attitude. Be willing to begin at entry level.

22 Interviewing tips Answering questions
Never speak negatively about former employers Listen carefully and take your time to answer Speak clearly and concisely Emphasize your strengths Discuss your weaknesses only when asked, and then do so in a positive light Avoid personal issues in your answers/examples Never use slang or incorrect grammar

23 More Resources for Interviewing
Schedule a Mock Interview with Career Services Schedule an appointment to discuss interview skills Stop by for Drop-Ins to get your resume critiqued before an interview or to ask a quick question. Mon, Wed, Fri: 10:00 am – 12:00 noon Tues, Thurs: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm There is more information and resources at the Career Services website

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