Last week’s post tackled the homework basics that will pave the way toward a successful job interview. Now let’s focus on some strategies that will leave a lasting, positive impression long after the interview is over.
- Practice answering typical interview questions. Search for specific interview questions that relate to this particular field. If a friend will step into the role of interviewer, all the better. Ready answers will demonstrate you put time and thought into preparing for this important meeting. And the more you practice, the more comfortable and confident you’ll feel during the real interview.
- Rehearse and memorize your “elevator pitch.” Then you’ll be ready for the inevitable, “Tell me (us) about yourself.” The last thing you want to follow that question is a bunch of murmured stuttering that will leave you both feeling awkward. So, prepare a short, snappy pitch that highlights your critical abilities and successes while inviting the interviewer to seek additional details.
- Listen, listen, listen. You may be tempted to mentally rehearse the answer for the next anticipated question, but instead shut down your brain and just listen. When a person’s nervous, the tendency is to fill up every moment with conversation rather than allow any moments of silence. Make a concentrated effort to listen and refuse to be rattled by a little lapse in the verbal exchange. Quiet time is far better than meaningless chatter that will not enhance the interviewer’s impression of you.
- Demonstrate confidence. Ultimately, your job during an interview is to convince the person(s) across the desk that you are the best candidate for the position. A task you’ll never accomplish unless you come across as confident. Body language is one indicator of confidence or the lack thereof. Sit up straight, shoulders back, head held high, and quiet fidgeting hands and fingers by loosing clasping them together. Plant restless feet on the floor and only cross your legs if your foot will cooperate by not bouncing or twitching.
- Take a breath. Breathing deeply will distract the butterflies in your stomach and relax tense muscles. It will also help you not lapse into meaningless chatter during a pause in the conversation. Hey, your resume got you in the door. You have every reason to be confident in your ability to land this job.
- Be honest. If you don’t have experience with a particular software, piece of equipment, or process, don’t try to pretend that you do. Even skirting the truth is not likely to enhance the interviewer’s opinion of you. An honest, “I have no experience with that, but I’m willing and eager to learn new processes” is the way to handle the situation. The fact is, an enthusiasm to learn coupled with a high-level of motivation and determination often wins over a more experienced candidate who is lackadaisical and unmotivated.
At MPS Technical
we’re always looking for motivated college graduates, who are eager to launch their career. Let our team connect you with a position that fits your skills, goals, and lifestyle. Give us a call today.