Maybe you’re naturally good with first impressions, or maybe you’re practiced every manner of mock interview question you can find multiple times—either way, there’s always more you can do.
That’s probably not the most welcome message in the world, but when it comes to landing your dream job—you know, that thing that could actually make you look forward to the 40+ hours a week you spend on getting a paycheck—did you really expect anything less?
Here are three things you can always do to polish yourself up before this incredibly important meeting.
1. Use the Job Description Wisely
Think of this as your interview prep cheat sheet. The job description basically spells out for you where you should be focusing your preparation efforts, and yet, for some reason people often forget to make full use of this handy guide. It’s essentially an outline of how the conversation will go.
Use it to craft position-specific mock interview questions to practice with or as a checklist for coming up with relevant stories and examples to use. For example, if it says, “looking for a detail-oriented person capable of juggling multiple projects,” make sure you have a story or two exemplifying that.
Finally, see if any questions pop up after reading through it. Is there a missing piece? Clarification needed? Yes? Great—now you have unique, relevant questions to ask the hiring manager at the end.
2. Do Your Homework on the Company
When you’re interviewing, you’re not just trying to sell your skills, you’re also trying to pitch what a great fit you are for the company. The better you know the organization, the more likely you are to stand out when it comes to that second piece. In other words, do your company research and connect the dots as to why you’ll be the perfect addition. (And if you’re struggling to find that connection, that’s a strong sign that it might not be right for you.)
Peruse the website and read the mission, values, and annual report. Check out the company’s social media accounts (and if available, Muse profile) to learn more about the culture. If the team clearly values honesty, make sure to weave that in (naturally). Or, perhaps management seems to love the “get ’er done” mentality—make sure your interview answers hit on that at some point.
Lastly, if you really want to impress, get a sense of the company’s strengths and what it does better than its competitors. No hiring manager hates a well-placed compliment as to why his or her organization’s crushing it (or is going to crush it) in an industry.
Check out Superian Sources at http://www.SuperianSources.com