5 Interviewing strategies
- Take the time to research the organization and the team you’re interviewing with to demonstrate a genuine interest and an understanding of their business. Visit the company website, read any news about the organization you can find online. Review LinkedIn profiles of everyone you are speaking/meeting with as well as the company’s leadership team and co-workers you can identify based on similar positions or title. If there are commonalities (alma mater, organization, boards, charities etc.) use them as a talking point that can reinforce who you are “beyond bullet points on your resume”.
- Assemble a list of questions that are important to you about the primary accountabilities of team members and the corporate culture. You should be evaluating them as much as they are evaluating you. Topics could include:
- What is the vision of the leadership team for the company?
- What is it about this company that sets them apart from other firms?
- Is this a new position, or are you replacing someone? What led to the position becoming available (promotion, attrition, growth/expansion)?
- What are the core expectations for the position you’re interviewing for?
- If you were hired today, how would your performance be evaluated 12 months from now to determine if you’ve been successful in the position?
- What are some examples the people you’re speaking with are most proud of in their time with the company?
- Most firms will have spent time reviewing your resume and any notes from their recruiting and HR groups prior to speaking with you. Be prepared to discuss your work history and stated accomplishments. Everything on your resume is fair game, be ready to explain all points in detail to an interested prospective employer. If there is anything listed you can’t discuss and use to illustrate a positive, take it off.
- Accomplishments should be able to be supported with a brief example or anecdote.
- Try and provide scenario-based answers to questions that illustrate your thought process as well as the result.
- Think about examples of your successes and your setbacks from prior roles. Talk to an employer in a way that shows you understand your strengths as well as area’s your working to improve. Acknowledging growth and improvement opportunities shows self-awareness. People who can’t articulate where they have faced challenges or failure and learned from those experiences raise RED FLAGS on interviews.
- Practice and prepare. It can be difficult to talk about yourself and your accomplishments. Like it or not, a job interview requires you selling yourself and that involves a presentation. Be thoughtful about the delivery of your messaging. Talk to yourself in the mirror, sit down with a friend or mentor and have them ask you lots of questions about your resume and experiences so you can hear how you respond and think about how your answers will be received. Then do it again, and again. It’s well worth the effort.