An employment interview is simply a meeting between you and a potential employer to discuss your qualifications and see if there is a “fit”. The interview is a sales meeting and you are both the salesperson and the product.
If you have been called for an interview
- Assume that the employer is interested in you and feels that you may be able to meet a need
- The employer wants to verify what they have read about you in your resume and talk about your qualifications
- It is your goal to identify a need and convince the employer that you are the one for the job
Preparation is the key to your success. Preparation will help
with the interview and will improve your interview success.
- Begin by gathering information and documents you may need for the interview
- Bring additional copies of your resume, typed list of references and letter(s) of recommendation
- You may also want to bring your pro-folio (transcriptions, licenses, certifications, work samples such as designs, drawings, writings)
- Bring a pen and pad of paper for taking notes
Research the job, whether it’s an internal posting
or external job application; the more you know, the better prepared
you will be. You can gather this information from a variety
- Ask the employer for a position description
- Research the employer/departmental/job profile using internal and external sources in print and on the internet
- Network with anyone you know who works for the department/organization
The next step is to match your qualifications to the requirements of the job.
- A good approach is to write out your qualifications along with the job requirements
- Think about some standard interview questions and how you might respond
- Most questions are designed to find out more about you, your qualifications or to test your reactions in a given situation
- If you lack experience or skills in a required area, think about how you might make up for those deficiencies
Whatever the form or process, the interview is a basic effort to learn more about your qualifications and your “fit” into the culture of that department/company/organization.
Purpose of an interview
- To become acquainted and to learn about one another
- The employer wants to learn how you “fit into the organization,” but it is also an opportunity for you to evaluate the company
During an interview
- It is important that you be yourself
- Get a good night’s sleep and plan any travel you may have to do
- You should present yourself for the interview no more than 15 minutes prior to your appointment