INTERVIEW TECHNIQUES

 

It’s show time!  More than likely you will be nervous, most people are, often times even the interviewer is nervous too!  You need to carry on with the presentation as an opera star with butterflies before the opening curtain would. The show must go on!  

 

Make it a point to not judge or read into anything the interviewer says or does, or even doesn’t do!  There are many different styles of interviewing, some can be brash and indifferent, other interviewers will be very friendly. Never read into the interview... just give it your all, each and every time!

 

Here are some pointers to help you aspire during your interview...

Arrive On Time

There’s nothing worse than showing up late for a job interview.  The first few minutes of the interview are the most important.  Show up at least 15 minutes early, if you are going to be late, CALL to let them know. When you call, be sure to apologize and let them know what time you can be expected and make sure you’re not late again.  When you meet the interviewer, be sure to apologize for being late.  The best excuses would be that you were tied up with work at your current employer, or that you were at another interview, or got lost on the way over. Showing up late could cost you your chances of landing the job so try to show up at least 15 minutes early.  On the other hand, don’t show up too early because you may come across as desperate.  Also, the interviewer may feel pressured to meet with you and could throw off their schedule.

 

Treat Everyone You Meet As Equally Important As The Interviewer

When you initially arrive at the interview location, chances are, you will enter a reception area, meet a receptionist or secretary and be asked to sit and wait.  Other employees may be around watching you.  Make sure you are courteous to the receptionist or secretary or any one else you meet.  Also, you should appear competent and professional when you greet these people.  You should greet the receptionist or secretary by introducing yourself:  “Good morning, I’m Jane Morris.  I have a 9 o’clock appointment with Mr. Lewis.” Wait to be invited to sit in a specific place.  If you are wearing an overcoat, take it off before you sit down.  Interviewers sometimes ask their employees for their opinion of candidates.  “What did you think about the candidate?  Did you have a chance to talk to him/her?  What did he/she do while they were waiting?  Do you think you’ll like him/her?”  The opinions of these people can be very important to the interview process.  So make sure you treat everyone you meet as important to the interviewer.

 

When Waiting For The Interviewer, Do

Something Relevant To The Interview And The Job

For example, after turning in your application ask the receptionist if there is any company literature you can review, etc.  Don’t ask self-centered questions about parking spaces, vacation or breaks. Your small talk should emphasize your interest in the organization as well as your genuine concern for the job being offered.  You might learn something important that will help you in the interview.

 

Communicate Positive Behaviors During The Critical First Five Minutes

The first five minutes of the interview, which may not even address job-related questions, are the most important.  It’s during this time that critical first impressions are made and interviewers decide whether or not they like you.  And being likeable is one of the most important aspects of getting hired.  If you make an excellent first impression from shaking hands, dressing right to handling the initial small talk, the rest of the interview may go extremely well.  He or she may decide within the first few minutes that they want to hire you and the rest of the time will be spent reinforcing their decision.  Make sure your perfume or cologne isn’t too strong and jewelry isn’t distracting.  The last thing you want is to be remembered for your strong scent or your noisy jewelry.

 

Greet The Interviewer Properly

Chances are the interviewer will come out to the reception area to greet you. Stand up straight, shake hands firmly, and maintain eye contact.  Listen carefully, look energetic, speak in the positive and introduce yourself:  “Hello, I’m Jane Morris.  It’s a pleasure to meet you.” Watch what you say.  This isn’t a time to make jokes, look tired or appear nervous.  If you’re asked any questions about finding the place or about other interviews, appear confident and positive by showing them you handled it just fine and with ease. This isn’t the time to ask about getting your parking validated!

 

Wait To Be Invited To Sit

The particular seating arrangement for the interview may be important to the interviewer.  You may, for example, be asked to sit on the other side of a desk or table.  You may be asked to sit on a sofa.  Whatever the case, don’t look like you are in a hurry by taking a seat before you are invited to sit.  Chances are you will be asked to sit a comfortable distance from the interviewer where you can both maintain good eye contact.

 

Keep Your Hands, Arms And Elbows To Yourself

If you are sitting at a desk, keep your hands, arms and elbows off the desk and away from any distracting items like pens or pencils.  Try to look alert, energetic, and focused rather than fidget with your purse and show your nervousness or irritating habits.  If you don’t know what to do with your hands, try folding them.

 

Sit Up Straight And Lean Slightly Forward

Avoid leaning back in your chair or looking extremely comfortable.  This posture may communicate that you are more interested in talking about yourself than in listening to and learning from the interviewer.  The best thing to do is sit up straight and lean slightly forward so as to give the impression that you are listening attentively, like when someone is telling you a good bit of gossip.  Nonverbally, it communicates that you are interested in the individual.  You will look more alert and energetic.

 

Let The Interviewer Start The Conversation, But

Take Initiative And Offer Some Of Your Own Openers

It is the responsibility of the interviewer to initiate openers.  During the first few minutes, the interviewer will probably talk to you about your trip, the weather, the location, or some other small talk topics.  Respond to the questions with more than just “yes” or “no”.  You need to take some initiative here and show your personality.  You can initiate your own small talk and say something positive about the office or the artwork or even the people you met in the reception area.  You might discover that you and the interviewer have something in common like having kids or loving animals.  Show some personal interest but by no means should you go overboard or seem fake.  In the end, how you handle yourself during the first few minutes will set the pace for the rest of the interview.  If you seem energetic and confident, things will probably go smoothly.  On the other hand, if you project the opposite, things might not go the way you hoped they would.

 

Reduce Stress And Nervousness By

Practicing A Few Techniques For Stress Reduction

You can control your nervousness better by taking deep breaths.  You can do this without getting noticed.  Also by taking your mind off of yourself and concentrating on the other person, you feel a little more comfortable.  If you are nervous, you’re probably being too self-conscious.  Rather than concentrate on your needs and fears, try to focus on the other person’s needs and questions.

 

Focus On The Interviewer’s Needs

Assume that the interviewer is concerned with their needs and that they are looking for someone who is productive and easy to get along with.  You must confirm in their minds that you are that person.  You do this by stressing your strong points to the employer, answering all of the trouble questions and by handling the small talk.

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