As the old adage goes: “You only get one chance to make a first impression.” This is certainly true of the job interview.
Consider these comments and tips from Jessica Simko, writing for Careerealism:
“These days, it can be overwhelming to think about how much work goes into finding a job. If you are very serious about it, you have likely educated yourself in all the various facets of a job search and become well-equipped to go out and tackle the task. But, so have many others. Once a company narrows down the candidate pool to a group of people they want to meet, and you are one of them, it’s time to start thinking about your next steps. Only one person can be chosen in the end. When all things are equal, what makes you stand out?”
“Finding strategic and creative ways to land job interviews is half the battle. Once you are chosen for an interview, it’s not always going to be enough to arrive early, smile at the right times, answer the questions properly, ask the right questions, and then conduct all the proper follow-up tasks. Chances are you are going up against other candidates who will also be doing those same things. Now is the time to go that extra mile.”
“1. Confirm your interview.”
“2. Develop a rapport with the people who interview you.” “Typically interviews (including phone interviews), start out with some small talk. Don’t just answer questions asked of you, ask them questions too and get a lighthearted conversation going! Ask them how they are doing and maybe share a lighthearted story. Try to help take the rigid formality of a job interview down a notch so that the conversation can flow easier.”
“3. Ask if you can have a tour of the office/building/plant, and so on.” “This is a great way to show that you have strong interest in the company. While on the tour, bring up several things that you know about the company (you have done your homework, right?) and ask questions about them. Take notice of things you see and either compliment them or ask questions about them.”
“4. Make it clear you are interested in the job and the company and not ‘what’s in it for me?'” “Try not to ask questions or makes statements that make it clear that you are only interested in how this job will affect you. Employers want individuals who care about the company. If it doesn’t come up in the interview, ask if you can learn about the company’s values and mission statement and talk about how it aligns with yours.”
“5. Send personalized thank-you letters to every person who was in the interview.” “Personalized means personal and unique to each person who was in the interview. Reference items specific to that person if you can. This is different from sending a standard copy/paste thank-you letter to them all.”
Click the image to read more from Simko.