Career Resource Center

Interview Tips

Information to bring to an interview:

  • Social Security card.
  • Government-issued identification (driver’s license).
  • Resume or application.
  • References. Be sure to include three references. Also request their permission ahead of time.

Preparation

  • Research the company. Know the mission of the organization, the organization’s history, recent organization accomplishments, etc.
  • Be prepared to describe or ask questions about a particular job you are interested in (try to ask at least one question about the job – doing so shows your interest in this particular job)
    • Example – who would be my supervisor?
  • Be prepared to share your personal job qualifications
    • Identify what classes you have taken that have prepared you for this job
    • What skills (transferable and job specific) make you a good candidate for this particular job
  • Be ready to describe specific job related experiences
    • What previous work experiences illustrate job skills needed for the job
  • Be ready to answer questions concerning your strengths and weaknesses, as well as why you should be hired for this job.
  • Set up a mock interview. Practice makes perfect!!!

Personal Appearance

  • Dress professionally; first impressions are lasting impressions
  • Dress conservatively
  • Dress for success!
  • Use positive body language – good posture, direct eye contact, shoulders back, firm handshake (yes, you too ladies), head up, don’t fidget.

The Interview

  • Get there early. Allow for the unforeseeable.
  • Greet the interviewer with a strong handshake.
  • Acknowledge the interviewer by name. Use their personal title (Mr., Ms., Mrs.)
  • When answering a question, give yourself time to think and then answer the question adequately. A pause before answering is ok; it allows you time to collect your thoughts.
  • Use proper English.
  • Appear excited and interested.
  • Use proper body language, such as eye contact and correct posture.
  • Do not ask questions of the interviewer that can be easily researched.
  • Avoid questions concerning salary, unless a job offer is tabled.
  • At the conclusion of the interview, shake hands and thank the interviewer.
  • Send a short thank you note afterwards. Recommendation – within 3 days of the interview. This is common courtesy; but also, brings your face and your interview to the mind of the interviewer again.

Prepare an Interview Marketing Kit

Before each interview, prepare an Interview Marketing Kit. This can be a small leather binder and should contain the following:

  1. Job-related samples of your professional work
  2. Certificates, licenses
  3. Official transcript
  4. Extra copies of your resume
  5. At least 2 letters of recommendation
  6. A list of your professional references
  7. A notebook
  8. Appointment calendar, pens, and pencils

Possible Interview Questions

Work History

  • In your previous job, what were your expectations and how were they met?
  • What job responsibilities did you have?
  • What did you like about your previous job?
  • What did you dislike about your previous job?
  • How did you handle major problems? Describe each situation.

Questions About You

  • What is your biggest weakness?
  • What is your biggest strength?
  • How do you handle situations of stress?
  • What motivates you each day?
  • Describe yourself.
  • Do you work better independently or as part of a team?
  • Provide some situations in which teamwork is demonstrated.

Questions About the New Job and the Company

  • What do you like about this job?
  • How are you qualified for this job?
  • Why should we hire you?
  • What do you already know about this business?
  • What is your definition of excellent customer service?
  • Is there anything that I haven’t discussed that you would like to know?

Prepared for the World

“Whether I continue working in Learning and Development, Organizational Effectiveness or choose another route altogether, my Humanities degree prepared me for the world, because it prepared me for deeply engaging with people, meeting them where they are and understanding their needs across all levels.”

– Lindsey (Leach) Simpkins, Class of ’05

 

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