There are various kinds of interviews. Some are in-person with one individual. Some are with a group over the phone or by video. Some organizations require a series of interviews, some don’t. No matter what interview experience you encounter, you’ll stand out by being prepared and confident.
Plan Your Trip
If you have time before the interview, do a trial run to the location as close to your interview time as possible. Check out the traffic and parking situation, so the day of the interview, you’ll arrive in plenty of time and feel confident.
Before the Interview
- Do your homework. Research the organization. Know their strengths, weaknesses, competitors, and have an answer prepared for how you can help them achieve their goals.
- Dress for success. Colors, shoes, accessories. They all matter. Think basic and professional.
- Ask yourself: Why do you want this job? What makes you exceptionally qualified for it or passionate about it? Be able to articulate it. It can make all the difference.
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Need more interviewing tips?
Check out interviewing tips and dress for success information in the Career Planning Guide (PDF).
Practice Interviewing with Career Experts
Schedule a mock interview with your Career Advisor via Handshake. After the interview is complete, you’ll receive helpful feedback to fine tune your skills and boost your confidence.
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During the Interview
- First impressions matter. Shake hands with your interviewer. Smile. Make eye contact.
- Don’t be afraid to pause before answering a question. Take a deep breath; gather your thoughts and answer.
- Have answers to common interview questions: Tell me about yourself is a big one. What would you highlight? What would you leave out? Give it some thought.
- Ask questions. Jot down a few questions before the interview. It’s perfectly fine to refer to them. Ask about the kind of work you’ll be doing, the work environment. You can even ask about when they’re planning to make a decision about the position.
- Thank the interviewer for their time and consideration. Ask for their business card if they don’t provide it. Shake hands.
After the Interview
- Day 1: Follow up with a thank you note via email or snail mail. Keep it concise. Reiterate your interest.
- Within two weeks: Follow up via email or a phone call. Reiterate your interest. Remember, people get busy. You’re just keeping yourself top of mind.
- After two follow-ups: If you’ve followed up twice (at least a week apart) and haven’t received a response, assume they’ve selected another candidate. Set your sight on the next opportunity!