6 Ways To Nail an Interview

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Congratulations, that hard part is over! You got an interview. Now what?-- You need to prepare yourself for your interview. Don't try to 'wing it' make sure you use your limited time with your potential employer wisely. You can feel cool and confident entering their office, rather than nervous and stressed. Walk into the office with your head held high, give them a firm handshake, and make eye contact. Repeat their name back to them and thank them, "Nice to meet you Sally, thanks for taking the time to meet with me."

1. Do Your Research

Find out all you can about the company you are interviewing at. Don't go in blind and don't go in only having read their summary on wikipedia. Put on your investigator cap and research, research, research. Review all you can about the company look at their facebook, instagram, and anything you can find about the company. Show interest in the company and ask questions about their growth. If you show interest about their future, it shows that you are invested in growing with them as a company.

2. Rehearse with a Friend

Whether you think you can wing it on the spot or not, it is always benefitial to practice typical interview questions with a friend. This will better help you feel prepared and give you that confidence you need. You don't want to sound 'rehearsed' but you want to have quick responses to those dreaded tough questions about your "strengths and weaknesses" and "what is a struggle you have had to overcome in the work place." Those questions are sure to come up and you don't want to be stuck there with nothing to say. You want to have quick comeback that is strong and shows them you would be a great asset to the company.

3.Be Genuine, Be Friendly and Make Small Talk

You might be intimidated by your interviewer but they are still another person you are getting to know. You potentially will be working with this person. Consider the "Airport Test"--You want to be the person that the interviewer would want to be stuck in an airport with. They will want to get to know you on a personal level and you will want to get to know them. Make sure that it comes naturally but you and your interviewer might have something in common. You might be able to use a personal anecdote to help your interviewer get to know you and showcase some of your abilities. You want to show that you are a good person as well as a good worker.

4. Ask Them Questions

This is not only their opportunity to get to know you, but for you to get to know them. During the interview process you get to feel out if this is going to be a good fit for you as well. What would some growth opportunities be? What are some of the challenges of the positon? Make sure to show that you are feeling them out as well. You are eager and interested, but you have standards and expectations for your employer. You want the relationship between you and your employer to be a successful partnership for the both of you.

5. Confidence is Key

Employers want to hire someone that they can trust and someone who is going to get the job done. They want to know that this person will effectively represent the company in a positive light. You want to show that you are fully capable, skilled, and that you woud be a pleasure to work with. An employer looks for someone that is accomodating, flexible, and someone that will be a great team player. You want to show up prepared, but you also want to show you are warm and personable.

6. Send a Thank You

Want to be set apart from the crowd after you leave the interview? Write your interviewer a handwritten thank you card. After all of my interviews I have sent a hand written thank you, thanking the interviewer for taking the time to meet with me. If you discussed something personal in the interview reference it in your note. “Hope your kids enjoyed their time at the lake!” Show them that you were listening and that you care. If you are interviewing for a tech savvy position a very nice email thanking them can do just the trick!

Photos by Andi Stempniak

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