by Yaneke Douglas
It is summer time, school is over and now you are on the hunt for a job or an internship. You apply to every possible position with the hopes of receiving a response. A couple of companies seem interested in you, so now you have to prepare for the interview. Besides the obvious, dressing appropriately for the position, having excellent hygiene and speaking as clearly as possible, there are a few interview tips that everyone can use which will give you the upper hand over other applicants.
Tips that will make you stand out:
1. Researching your position and company
NEVER go into an interview without knowing some background information about the company, the position you are applying to and or the department you will be working in. Typically a very popular question asked by interviewers is, “what do you know about our company?” Having a well thought out and well researched answer shows that you are curious and interested in the position. A suggested idea is to write a cheat sheet of some information and any interesting points you discover about the company. This way you will have all of the information at your fingertips. Having a cheat sheet will not matter because an interview is not a test but simply a way to promote yourself as the best for the position.
As I mentioned before, an interview is essentially an advertisement or a way to market yourself to an employer. Would you get Dr. Dre headphones if he did not market them as a must have item? I know I would not even look at them if this was not the case. This is essentially the same when you go on an interview. With confidence, you will be able to show that you are prepared for the job, you are mature, and that you feel like you are qualified for the position. These are all traits that interviewers look for in their future employees.
3. Always have a couple of questions prepared for your interviewer
When researching the position at hand try to jot down around five interview questions. During most interviews there is a point where you are asked the infamous, “Do you have any questions for me?” Being prepared with these questions always helps especially if you went through a long interview and your mind is overwhelmed. You may not need to ask all five of the questions but it’s good to be prepared as some interviewers like to see how long you can keep the conversation going. For some sample questions click here.
4. Bring at least three extra resumes and a pen
Always, always, always bring three extra resumes with you. One resume is in case that the interviewer does not have a paper version of your resume. The other is for anyone else you may meet on the interview. The third resume is for yourself; this resume will be a great aide for you to refer to. Make sure to bring a pen; even two pens, in case one runs out of ink! Little do people realize that something as simple as not having a pen will be a hint to an employer that you are not prepared for the interview and thus would not be prepared at work.
5. Be 15 minutes early or at least on time
Make sure you are early! Some employees will automatically write you off if they have to wait to meet with you, especially without notice. If you can’t make it on time try to call your contact person 15 minutes prior to your meeting in order to let them know the time you can make it. This way, you are being considerate of their schedule.
Using these five basic tips, you can go on any interview, whether as a fashion blogger or a financial analyst and leave a great impression on the interviewer. Best of luck and happy interviewing!