Interview preparation is a critical component of a job or internship search. Preparing for the interview is almost as important as the interview itself. The key to successful interviewing is knowing who you are and knowing the organization with which you are interviewing. To prepare for any interview, you should:
- Do a self-evaluation
- Research the organization
- Review sample questions you might be asked and questions you can ask the interviewer
Remember, it may be who you know that will get you the interview, but it is what you know that will get you the job!
Important Steps to Preparing for an Interview
- Do a self examination. Know what you are looking for in a position by evaluating your values, interests, skills and abilities. Know why you want to work for each company you are interviewing with.
- Prepare and practice for your job interviews. Put together a list of potential interview questions and think about how you might answer the questions if asked. Also, always bring questions to ask the interviewers.
- Schedule a mock interview with one of our professional staff members. Mock interviews are intended to help you sharpen your interviewing skills and are useful when you are applying to graduate school, for an internship or a full-time employment opportunity. Mock interviews are generally conducted in person, though if you are unable to visit our office, we can do a mock phone interview with you.
- Research, research, research. Before going to an interview, you will want to learn more about the company, department and industry trends. Depending on the company, you can find this information on their website, through the news or by word of mouth.
- Dress for success! First impressions are extremely important to employers. Make sure you dress appropriately for the industry in which you want to work or intern. Practice wearing your interviewing clothes so that you are comfortable in them.
- Practice making eye contact when you're talking with someone. And don't forget to smile!
- Practice your hand shake. It is important that it be firm. Don't give someone a "dead fish" hand shake. Conversely, don't break someone's bones.
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