Job Interview Skills
The Interview. The resume tells an employer what you've done; the interview enables you to tell the employer what you have learned from what you've done.
The InterviewAn interview is a two-way street.
It is a chance for you to get to know each other and to assess if this position and firm is a good fit.
The InterviewThe interview allows you to gain insight into the job and the organization.
It enables the employer to determine if you have the skills and abilities needed to be an effective member of his/her organization.
How to Ace that InterviewPrepare for the InterviewKnow Yourself Know the Employer and the Field Practice for the Interview The InterviewAfter the Interview
Prepare for the InterviewKnow YourselfThink about your skills, interests, and values. Consider your strengths and weaknesses. Be able to discuss decisions you have made and the thought behind them.
Prepare for the InterviewKnow YourselfIdentify accomplishments you are proud of and things you might have done differently. Provide examples to demonstrate how you have developed your skills. Be able to articulate why you are interested in this field. Define your long-term goals.
Prepare for the InterviewKnow the Employer and the Field Research the employer, the position, and the industry or field. Know what salary range is usual for this type of position. Read current periodicals and trade journals to learn about current trends in the field.
Prepare for the InterviewKnow the Employer and the Field Review mission statements, annual reports, and company literature. Think about the firm's competitors, its clients or customers. Be familiar with the employer's organizational structure.
Prepare for the InterviewPractice for the Interview Find a mentor who can discuss your interview strategy.Participate in a videotaped mock interview. Review interview questions with a friend and/or use a tape recorder to critique your answers.
THE INTERVIEW Nonverbal Communication Skills Verbal Communication Skills Interview Etiquette
THE INTERVIEW Nonverbal Communication SkillsGreet the employer with a firm handshake. Maintain steady eye contact with the interviewer. Use positive vocal qualities and facial expressions.
THE INTERVIEW Nonverbal Communication SkillsSit attentively to demonstrate your interest and enthusiasm. Dress in a suitable manner to convey a polished, professional image.
THE INTERVIEW Nonverbal Communication SkillsMirror the Interviewers Body Language Sit properly. Use the athletic and low-cross positions. (The low cross position is more appropriate sitting position for females.)
THE INTERVIEW The less a person moves their hands and arms, the more powerful they are. Try to keep your hands lower than your elbows, rest them on the arms of the chair or your thighs.
THE INTERVIEW Verbal Communication SkillsListen carefully to what is being asked and answer the question. Ask for clarification if you don't understand the question. Use clear, concise answers.
THE INTERVIEW Verbal Communication SkillsUse proper grammar. Don't exaggerate and don't be negative. Be specific; refer to concrete experiences.Keep to the point. Don't bring up extraneous matters.
THE INTERVIEW Verbal Communication SkillsBe as specific as possible. Don't try to dominate the interview. Let the interviewer guide the questions. Ask appropriate and well thought out questions.
THE INTERVIEW Verbal Communication SkillsYour voice is an important tool in an interview. Make sure that it projects Enunciate carefully, but don't fake an accent. Your tone should be enthusiastic and confident.
THE INTERVIEW Verbal Communication SkillsAvoid fillers like "um," "you know" and "things like that." Silence is perfectly acceptable. Take time to organize your answers. Avoid slang and informal language. Answer questions in the language in which they are asked.
Questions Asked byInterviewersInitiative and motivation Career ambitions and goalsCreativity and problem-solving skills Organizational skillsAnalytical skills Attention to detail
Questions Asked byInterviewersAbility to learn Flexibility Interpersonal Skills Ability to resolve conflictsTime and Stress management
How an Interview GoesThey Socialize. They Question. They Inform. You Question. They Define Their Next Move.
Match Factor Traits Good Appearance Friendliness, Poise, and Stability Experience How your personality fits the positionOrganization
Match Factor Traits Motivation and Attitude Expressiveness Learning Ability Achievements Leadership
Match Factor Traits Skills Education Company Knowledge Symbiotic Goals Decision Making
Match Factor Traits Company Loyalty Promotability
Favorite Questions asked by InterviewersWhat do you see yourself doing five years from now? Relate your answer to the position youre applying for.How do you make yourself indispensable to a company? Interviewers are looking for both technical and interpersonal competence.
Favorite Questions asked by Interviewers3. Whats your greatest strength? Dont just talk about your strength, relate it to the position Whats your greatest weakness?Say something along the lines of, I have difficulty with this thing, and these are the strategies I use to get around it.
Favorite Questions asked by Interviewers5. Tell me about a time when your course load was heavy. How did you complete all your work? Interviewers are looking for a plan-ahead kind of individual.
Favorite Questions asked by Interviewers6. Tell me about a time when you had to accomplish a task with someone who was particularly difficult to get along with. Interviewers want to see if the candidate has the ability to be sensitive to the needs of others but can still influence them. Dont say I just avoided them or They made me cry.
Favorite Questions asked by Interviewers7. How do you accept direction and, at the same time, maintain a critical stance regarding your ideas and values?Interviewers would like to see if the candidate has good interpersonal skills.
Favorite Questions asked by Interviewers8. What are some examples of activities and surroundings that motivate you? Since most disciplines today require getting along with and motivating other people, interviewers would like to see if the candidate has these requirements.
Favorite Questions asked by Interviewers9. Tell me how you handled an ethical dilemma. Students who cant offer a situation that they handled correctly the first time can explain how they learned from the mistakes they made in the past.
Favorite Questions asked by Interviewers10. Tell me about a time when you had to resolve a problem with no rules or guidelines in place. Interviewers are looking for a sense of urgency in initiating action. The question probes a student?s ability to overcome obstacles.
Answering Questions with PoiseListen carefully. If you feel the question is unclear, ask politely for clarification. Pause before answering to consider all facts that may substantiate your response. Always offer positive information; avoid negativity at all times.
Answering Questions with PoiseGet directly to the point. Ask if listener would like you to go into great detail before you do. Discuss only the facts needed to respond to the question. Focus and re-focus attention on your successes. Remember, the goal is not to have the right answers so much as it is to convince the interviewer that you are the right person.
Answering Questions with PoiseBe truthful, but try not to offer unsolicited information. Try not to open yourself to areas of questioning that could pose difficulties for you.
Kinds of Questions Traditional QuestionsBehavioral QuestionsMixed Questions
Behavioral QuestionsOpen-ended questions that will cause you to describe real circumstances and your responses to them. You must describe in detail a particular event, project, or experience and you dealt with the situation, and what the outcome was.
Behavioral QuestionsThe premise behind behavioral interviewing is that the most accurate predictor of future performance is past performance in similar situations.
Answering Behavioral QuestionsDon't try to portray yourself as a person that never makes mistakes. Be honest about your mistakes since the experienced interviewer will be looking for "progress" and "growth", not perfection.
Answering Behavioral QuestionsGive an example of how you learned from your mistake and how that experience has benefited you in the long run.Be succinct and concise.
Answering Behavioral QuestionsIn all behavioral answers, the interviewer wants to hear:A brief description of the problem, challenge or situation. What your action was & how you decided that action. A brief description of the result of your action and your assessment of its result.
Interview Etiquette Arrive on time. Introduce yourself. Get the correct spelling of the person's name and his/her exact title. Ask for a business card.
Interview Etiquette Don't call the interviewer by his/her first name, unless invited to do so. Don't ask about salary and benefits until the employer brings up the subject. Send a thank you note promptly.
Interview TipsArrive a little early. Do your homework.Bring a Spare Copy of Your Resume in a Briefcase or Folder. Expect to Spend Some Time Developing Rapport.