The interview is scheduled. It is normal to feel nervous about an upcoming interview because you want to do your best. Preparing and practicing for the interview can help you feel calm and confident when the day arrives.
Below are items to consider when preparing for the interview:
Review the position – understand how your experience qualifies you for the position so you can share that information during the interview. Consider your professional experience, review what you've learned and accomplished and think through how your background aligns with the job.
Research the company – get to know more about us. Use our website or other publications to gather as much information as possible. Understand what we do and what our values are.
Practice interviewing – review questions with another person to be more comfortable interviewing. It may feel silly pretending to interview, but this is valuable practice giving concise, complete answers confidently.
Plan ahead – know what you want to wear and what materials you plan to bring. Consider bringing extra copies of your resume, a notepad and pen, a list of references (if applicable) and your professional portfolio.
Prepare your own questions – ask questions that show you understand us and the position. Be aware of the roles of the people who you are interviewing with and try to have questions for each group. Preparing two or three questions that reflect your interests may enable you to make an informed decision if an offer comes your way.
Connect with your references – notify your references you are looking for a job and that they may be contacted. Confirm their contact information and update your reference list.
Find time to de-stress – a job search can be stressful so find a way to relieve some of that stress before the interview. Consider talking with a friend, meditating, exercising or whatever de-stressor works for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do I really need to take time to practice before the interview?
A: Preparation will help you feel calm and confident. Knowing what you want to say can help you avoid stumbling over answers during the interview. This is a competitive situation and it is important to put your best foot forward.
Q: Who should I list as a reference?
A: Include current or former managers and peers who can comment on your experience and skills. If your work experience is limited, a teacher, coach, instructor or volunteer coordinator could provide a reference. Friends and family are typically not appropriate unless they have worked with you. It is also a good idea to get permission from everyone you list as a reference.
Treat every person you interact with as an evaluator – you're bound to interact with a number of individuals through our interview process, from the person on the phone scheduling your interview, to the HR Recruiter, to the hiring manager, to the receptionist in the office, to the cashier in the coffee shop.
Treat each of these individuals with professionalism and grace – don't be short with the receptionist or rude to the interview scheduler. You never know if feedback about your interactions will get back to the decision makers and eliminate you from consideration.
Be confident – you've made it past the paper evaluation and have an opportunity to interview. Only a small percentage of applicants get the opportunity to interview. Let that idea resonate and build your confidence. We are taking time to get to know you better; you've garnered our interest on paper now confirm that decision in your interviews.
Remember, we've decided we want to learn more about you. This is your opportunity to show us what you have to offer!
A Successful Interview
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