Beyond the Resume: Prepping for the Interview
Imagine: you have landed an interview for a great position in a company you respect. Your resume is polished, credentials impeccable and your references glowing. You’ve put a lot of time, energy and effort into how you look on paper — how much have you put into how you interact in person?
Many people make the mistake of thinking they can sail into an interview, list their accomplishments and secure the position. What can you, as a candidate, do to prepare for the in-person interview, as carefully as you polished and prepped your resume?
The company: Dig deeper into the philosophy, mission, and goals of the company. Don’t just reach the ‘About Us’ page of the website, read through the entire website, and other materials they have & such as white papers, annual reports, and brochures.
Social media: Do they have a Facebook page? Is the company on LinkedIn? What about Twitter or YouTube? Do they have a blog? Scrutinize these, as the company’s social media outlets show you how they are presenting themselves to the public & to their customers.
Other media coverage: Are there any articles about the company in the local newspaper? Industry magazines? Do other bloggers mention the company? Read this to see how the public and their industry perceive the company.
The interviewer: Who is interviewing you? How long have they been with the company? Where did they start in the industry and in this particular company? The internet is your friend here; search the person’s name and learn about the person who will be deciding your fate.
Mock interview: Did you know it’s not always the most qualified candidate that is hired? Your performance and professionalism goes a long way in influencing the final hiring decision. As the number one complaint of interviewers is candidates lack of communication skills, this exercise isn’t about sounding mechanical and responding by rote to typical interview questions. It’s about becoming at ease & with yourself and the process. Working with a human resources professional is the way to prepare fully for an interview. You can expect a thorough assessment of:
• Interview strategies
• Communication skills
• Deflection of difficult/illegal questions
• Voice tone/inflection/rhythm
• Industry/position knowledge
• Eye contact
• Nervous habits/tics
• Facial expressions
What impact will you make? Working with a career coach and going through the mock interview process adds confidence, knowledge, and self-awareness leading to success.