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Interview Like a Pro: How to improve your odds of getting the job you want Lisa Cornelius Charles Dively How do you get the job you want. It can be said.

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Presentation on theme: "Interview Like a Pro: How to improve your odds of getting the job you want Lisa Cornelius Charles Dively How do you get the job you want. It can be said."— Presentation transcript:

1 Interview Like a Pro: How to improve your odds of getting the job you want Lisa Cornelius Charles Dively How do you get the job you want. It can be said that interviewing like getting to play at Carnegie Hallo is easy all you need is Practice Practice Practice. Minnesota Department of Corrections

2 Agenda Purpose of the interview What interviewers are seeking
Types of interviews Preparing for the interview During the interview After the interview The interview is an opportunity to check out the organization AND an opportunity for them to check you out as well. In this program you will learn how to make the best impression and avoid the common mistakes that trip up many HIGJHLY qualified job applicants. Minnesota Department of Corrections

3 Purpose of the Interview
A way for both the employer and the candidate to have an opportunity to exchange information to determine whether the person has the knowledge, skills and ability to perform the functions of the job Because it is a two way street you want to be certain you have the questions ready that you cannot answer by research. Minnesota Department of Corrections

4 Interviewer Concerns Content Skills: Does candidate have skills necessary to perform job in this field (i.e., management, programming, word processing) Transferable Skills: Does candidate have skills necessary for handling work: managing, operating, coordination, communicating, etc… Adaptive Skills: Does candidate have the personality and temperament for this job? Can she/he self-manage (assertiveness, honesty, open-mindedness, flexibility, adaptability, tolerance) DO you have the job knowledge Do you have skills that can be applied anywhere? You want to really stress these when you are not the “best” candidate in content Finally will you fit in with the rest of the team Minnesota Department of Corrections

5 Types of Interviews & Interview Questions
Behavioral Case interviews Industry-specific Open ended questions/self-evaluative questions On site, telephone, videoconference There are different types of interviews just as there are different types of jobs. Each type of interview requires a different type of preparation Minnesota Department of Corrections

6 Behavioral Interviews
Behavioral interviewing is based on the principle that the best indicator of your future performance is your past performance: “Tell me about a time that you had to find a creative solution to a problem” “Tell me about a time your work was criticized” Thomas Janz first described the behavioral interview. It starts with a generation of critical incidents and the identification of behaviors. It differences from industry specific in that it seeks to understand what the applicant would typically do given a specific situation. Also, well structured behavioral interviews will have a follow-up question built into the design. You may use general questions when the person has limited job experience: “Tell me about a time you had to deal with a difficult coworker.” Minnesota Department of Corrections

7 Case Interviews A case interview is the analysis of a specific problem or question Demonstrates your ability to work through cases similar to those you might face Each case typically lasts between five and ten minutes Often scenario-based problem-solving activities designed to discover competencies Gary Latham and Michael Campion developed the case interview or it is also known as the situational interview. It starts with a job analysis. Then situations that are commonly experienced on the job are identified. Then these incidents are sorted into dimensions and typically you want at least two cases or incidents to adequately measure that dimension. The cases/incidents are then rank from most to least important. Coaching of applicants can significantly improve performance in the interview. Minnesota Department of Corrections

8 Open-Ended Questions and Self-Evaluative Questions
Questions will be open-ended: You control the content Provide examples/substantiate How you answer can be revealing “Tell me about yourself” Used frequently at the beginning of interview “What kind of manager are you?” “How good are your analytical skills?” Open ended question tend to have the least validity as a. 151 studies were reviewed and structures interviews had more reliability and validity than unstructured. Structured interviews were almost twice as effective as unstructured but unstructured interviews in the hands of a highly skilled interviewer can skill gather a tremendous amount of meaningful information. There is no research to support that panel interviews are more effective than single interviewers, even though this method is widely used in government. Minnesota Department of Corrections

9 “How Would You” Questions
These questions are used to demonstrate you have done the job or you have a very good idea how to approach the work Think about the job before hand Identify the 5-10 most critical elements or work activities (interview a job holder if necessary) Prepare your answer How would you create a work schedule for 50 people? How would you ensure that vacation schedules are fair and allow for adequate coverage? How would you cut the budget by 5%? How would you questions require you to think like the interviewer. Start by assuming YOU are the interviewer what questions would YOU want to ask an applicant in relations to this specific job. Write down as many as you can think of. If you are struggling a bit here get to the internet and start researching. You may want to find textbooks on the industry or the position. Assume for any job somebody wrote about it. Start with Amazon Minnesota Department of Corrections

Research the employer, job, function, etc. Get a copy of the position description Find out who is on the interview panel Prepare questions for interviewer Prepare references Logistics (time, date, location…) Remember the first time you had to go on stage as a kid. You forgot your lines people laughed when they shouldn’t you stared out at them and nothing came to mind. THE SAME THING CAN HAPPEN IN THE INTERVIEW—although laughter is very unlikely. When you were a kid playing T-ball sometimes you would miss the ball but with practice you learned to hit the ball out of the park. Now if you only interview once every 4-8 hours and then you interview 4 times in a row you need to hit a homer every time. The only way to do it is to practice mock interviews out loud over and over again. Video tape your mock interviews and look for mannerisms that do not make a positive impact. Do you fidget? Do you pause when you are asked “why did you leave your last job?” Minnesota Department of Corrections

11 Before the Interview You should Make an accomplishment log
Research the unit you are interviewing Write questions you want to ask the interviewer Check out Mapquest and the DOT road construction site All of the above Try to be the first or the last in the interview process. There is some research to indicate there is an advantage to people who are the first or the last to interview. Minnesota Department of Corrections

12 Prepare: Know Thyself You must PREPARE yourself to talk about your skills and capabilities intelligently and persuasively Successful candidates know how to showcase their … experience and how it relates to the specific job on their resume and in the interview to demonstrate to employers that they have a strong work ethic, for example, or the necessary teamwork skills. It can set them apart from their competition Many people do not like to talk about themselves. Therefore, they do not do well in interviews. Some people say they have a practice interview. They interview for a job they do not want. What a waste of time! Every time you interview it should be the goal to get hired! practice at home and by practice we mean getting to know yourself. Minnesota Department of Corrections

13 Prepare: Know Thyself Know your resume!
Be able to articulately discuss every item on the resume Be prepared to provide more detail about any item on the resume Make sure your resume is up to date. More than 1 page is okay, 10 pages is not! Minnesota Department of Corrections

14 Prepare: Make an Accomplishment Log
SKILLS Ability to work together as a team member Ability to analyze data Ability to act independently Specialized skills ACCOMPLISHMENTS I am frequently requested to be team member due to my ability to facilitate discussions and resolve conflicts. A few projects I worked on include: Make a list for yourself Accomplishment logs are great ways to weave stories about what you have done in the years of your employment. You don’t score big points by working 20 for Acme. You score interview points for what you accomplished in those 20 years at Acme. Be sure to prioritize your accomplishments and have your stories ready. Minnesota Department of Corrections

15 Prepare: Practice Write out answers Practice out loud
Schedule mock interview Tape record yourself Practice with friends Hardly anyone does this unless they go to a career coach. Yet this is the best way to do well in the interview. Minnesota Department of Corrections

16 Prepare: References Line up your references several weeks prior to interviews Take a list of references and contact information with you, in case interviewer asks for them Better still have reference letters with you Make absolutely certain the reference KNOWS you’ve given his/her name Minnesota Department of Corrections

17 Preparation: Logistics
The day before the interview Review where the interview will be held Check “Mapquest” to see how long it takes you to get there Check the MNDOT website to check for road construction and delays Allow an extra 20 minutes to get to your destination Just like in golf planning is the key to sinking the putt. Plan ahead and don’t start planning as you are dashing out the door to the interview. If this interview is that important to you even getting in the right area an hour ahead is not inappropriate. Go grab a coffee once you have found the correct building. Minnesota Department of Corrections

18 Relax: A Three Step Process for Stress Reduction
Dr. Joyce Brown, a noted psychologist suggest people use “square breathing” to relax Breathe in for 3 seconds, hold for 3 seconds exhale for 3 seconds, repeat Do this before the interview starts Your mind is a library. Ask for the right thing and you can get any book about you! Ask for books that show how nervous you are and that is all the reference library will give you. Let’s take a small detour. CLOSE YOUR EYES RELAX PUT BOTH FEET ON THE FLOOR Imagine you are on an elevator jammed packed pushing and shoving. No one is talking. and you are shot up to the 25th floor of the IDS building in Minneapolis. You are there in an instant. You get off the elevator and your toes are on the very edge of the building. You can feel the wind whipping your face. You feel the building sway back and forth. At that very moment your worst enemy runs off the elevator and comes running at you [said louder and faster] to push you off the building. Now you realize the edge has a 6 foot ledge and you stumble about 3inches. The mind holds on to negative images better than positive ones. We are conditioned by parents and teachers who told you what you did wrong more often than what you did right. And if you only did ok or fair, YOU NEVER HEARD ANYTHING. Being in an elevator, being on a ledge, being pushed, many people could ‘see’ this as they are negative imagines. Not getting hurt is a positive one and many people are not able to “hold” onto the image at this point.\ Square breathing helps to control the negative images at bay. The key to the technique is to practice it a few times a day so when you need to use it you will have mastered this simple yet powerful technique! Minnesota Department of Corrections

19 Attire and Appearance First impressions count!
Well groomed, showered, hair in-control Suit, conservative colors, well-fitting, comfortable, pressed, clean No strong perfume/cologne, no flashy jewelry, etc… Check the mirror before you start the interview. Your perfume should not arrive before you do! If you are over 60 or under 21 you are more likely to bath and gargle in perfume. In the first case your olfactory nerves in your nose lose sensitivity as we age. In the case of a younger adult you may have watched to many AXE cologne commercials! Minnesota Department of Corrections

20 Prepare: Questions to Ask
Interviewing is reciprocal Prepare educated questions that are: Genuine and honest Not too pushy Do not ask questions about salary, personal issues, or uninformed questions Instead, ask about the challenges facing the manager and determine how you can contribute Asking questions about benefits, sponsorship, salary, etc… suggests that you are focused on your own needs and not concerned with what you can contribute to the company. Minnesota Department of Corrections

21 Questions to Avoid in the First Interview?
What are the hours? How much does it pay? Are you flexible on the hours? Avoid me oriented questions! Minnesota Department of Corrections

22 Interview Do’s Arrive early/on time Bring copies of resume
Bring pen/paper Wear something professional Be enthusiastic - Match your energy level to the interviewer’s Listen carefully Take a few moments to think about your response Get interviewer’s business card Maintain good eye contact Eye contact with each member of the interview panel Minnesota Department of Corrections

23 Interview Don’ts Don’t chew gum or suck on candy
Don’t make up answers to questions you don’t know or understand. Don’t badmouth current or former supervisors Don’t fidget (watch nervous habits) Watch “Ummms” Don’t be late! Use positive imagery and positive statements . Do not talk negatively about a coworker former supervisor etc. Minnesota Department of Corrections

24 Be on Time Arrive about 10 minutes before interview
Being late is a HUGE red flag Don’t be TOO early – might inconvenience the interviewer If too early prepare for interview Help the interviewer manage the interview. No question requires a 10 minute answer. Ask at the beginning how many questions are there so you can judge how you should best answer a question. Minnesota Department of Corrections

25 What to Expect Introductions and handshake
Written questions read to you Interviewer may provide brief overview of position or unit You respond to questions (if it is a good interview, this is the longest part) Most interviews last minutes You ask questions of the interviewer Interviewer closes the interview and gives you information about next steps - tells you when a decision will be made Thank the interviewer for his/her time If the interviewer does not say ASK when will they make a decision or what will be the next step in the interview process Minnesota Department of Corrections

26 PAR or STAR Technique Use this method to frame your response in an organized manner Problem (Situation/Task) Action Result Going for PAR is something every golfer and ever interviewee should shoot for. Minnesota Department of Corrections

27 PAR Example “Tell me about a time you were on a team and a member wasn’t contributing?” (P) I was assigned to work on a project with a team of 5 others. One our our team members wasn’t completing his assignments. (A) I finally met with him in private, and asked if there was anything I could do to help. He told me he was preoccupied with a personal problem, so I referred him to his supervisor or HR, or EAP. (R) He not only was able to spend more time on our project, but he was also grateful to me for helping him out. We finished the project on time. Minnesota Department of Corrections

28 Strategies for Specific Questions “Run me through your resume”
Start with college and work forward, outlining your employment history, graduate studies, key accomplishments and transitions Should take no more than 2-4 minutes Be prepared to answer more in depth if asked Highlight the activities and prior positions most applicable to the job in question and relevant skills What did you accomplish not necessarily the years you did an activity. Your resume highlights should be relevant to the job for which you are applying Minnesota Department of Corrections

29 “Why are you interested in this job?”
Hopefully you’ve done your homework The interviewer wants to know why you are interested in their business versus anyplace else Go beyond the superficial (reputation, industry leader) and demonstrate you’re a good candidate (emphasize your skills and interests and how they relate specifically to this person or group) Show you know a lot about the employer and the job It may be asked. It frequently is. So prepare you answer. Read trade journals to give you a feel of what are current issues Minnesota Department of Corrections

30 “Where would you like to be in five years?”
Usually asked to determine whether you plan to stick with the organization Describe new experiences you'd like to add in the future building on the job for which you are applying Avoid mentioning specific job titles “My interest is to grow with [THAT UNIT] Minnesota Department of Corrections

31 Sell Yourself Market your brand (Your strengths)
Make sure the interviewers understand what you have to offer Keep in mind which key points you want to convey and make sure that information gets emphasized Be sure to bring in relevant volunteer work and home life activity to demonstrate transferable skills. In a job that requires a high level of organization you may want to describe how when you organized the volunteers for the community MS walk a you created individual checklist activities for each volunteer. This way if one volunteer was unavailable you could easily assign the duty to someone else. Planning was the key to the successful completion of the project . The same is true for any project! Minnesota Department of Corrections

32 Listen to the Employer Listen to the interviewer and make sure you understand his/her questions – ask them to repeat if necessary Practice active listening skills (acknowledge, pay attention, make eye contact, etc…) Don’t be defensive when asked tough questions Minnesota Department of Corrections

33 AFTER THE INTERVIEW Evaluate/take notes Send a thank you letter/email
Follow-up Don’t be slow - do it immediately Minnesota Department of Corrections

34 Evaluate Take a few moments to evaluate your performance
Write down the questions you were asked Consider where you need improvement Minnesota Department of Corrections

35 Thank You Note Thank interviewer once again for his/her time
Restate your interest in the position Mention any facts you may have omitted On white paper no pastels, no flowers or puppies Minnesota Department of Corrections

36 Follow-Up If it is after the time when the interviewer indicated he/she would follow up: Call or to inquire as to status of job Reiterate interest Minnesota Department of Corrections

37 IMPORTANT REMINDER If you do not TALK about your experience DURING the interview, the interviewer cannot score your work experience. No matter how qualified you are! 10 Minnesota Department of Corrections

38 5 Biggest Mistakes Not being prepared before the interview. Not enough practice! Stressing out so your strengths can’t shine through Not answering the questions thoroughly enough to articulate your knowledge, skills and abilities Not asking questions to show you really want that job! Not following up after the interview Minnesota Department of Corrections

39 Question The biggest mistake that people make in an interview
Not dressing appropriately Arriving late for the interview Not answering the question completely Minnesota Department of Corrections

40 QUESTIONS?? Minnesota Department of Corrections

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