Hi Fabulous Working Females,
So you got an interview! Congratulations, receiving an opportunity for an interview is one step closer to getting the job. Even if you don’t get the job, going on an interview gives you experience, insight to a professional environment, and builds connections.
I remember when I was preparing for my first in-person interview, I received helpful tips on things I would have not known to do prior. Now, I want to share those tips with you all. Reality is, how you conduct yourself on an interview can make or break whether you get the job -no matter how qualified you are.
It is crucial you do your research on the company you are interviewing for before- hand. Google the company, study their brand statement and messaging. Educate yourself on recent news and wins for the company.
One of the first questions on an interview can be “So what makes you want to work for us?” or “What do you know about our Company?” In doing your research, you can not only impress the person interviewing you by showing your knowledge and dedication for the role, but you can also relate back to how the company has influenced you in your personal life in reasoning as to why you are a great candidate for the position.
Of course, you will be asked questions as this is an interview... BUT I can guarantee at the end of your interview, your interviewee will ask you “Do you have any questions for me?”
I suggest coming prepared with 5 questions to ask your interviewee. Examples below:
· “Can you describe a typical day in this type of role?”
· “What would you say are the most important qualities for someone to excel in this role?” (then, relate your skillset back to those qualities and what you could bring to the table)
· “What are your expectations for the person in this role?”
· “What is the culture like?”
· “What do you like best about working here at ___”
ATTIRE (DRESS YOUR BEST)
As we discussed in our previous blog post “Dress How You Want to be Addressed”, first impressions are important (especially on an interview). Wear your most professional outfit! Such as:
· Dress pants, button down blouse
· Dress pants, blouse, blazer over
· Dress and blazer
· Pencil skirt, blouse and/or blazer
· Flats or heels (I suggest no sandals)
TAKE NOTES (literally)
What to bring with you:
Make sure to bring a notebook, folder, and pen. It is important that you take diligent notes during the interview when the interviewee is telling you about the role. Also, bring a folder with you to store your resumes & cover letters. There are high quality notebooks that have folders built within, as well as to a place to store your pens. I always use something like the one linked below when I go on an interview.
Resume + Cover Letter (multiple copies)
Come prepared with at least 10 copies of your resume, and 10 copies of your cover letter. (blog post coming soon about resumes & cover letters). Reason being, is you never know if the interviewee will have you meet with multiple people, and it is better to be over prepared than under-prepared. Be sure to offer a copy of both as soon as you meet the person and sit down. They may have a copy already printed out, but in offering your own copies you show you came prepared, in addition to your professionalism right off the bat.
When leaving an interview, be sure to thank the interviewee for their time-as they took the time out of their day to meet with you.
Ask for a Business Card
After wrapping up, ask the interviewee for a business card. If they don’t have one, ask them if they would kindly write down their information
Shaking someone’s hand is also a very professional way to wrap things up on your way out, but it is hard to say now with COVID-19 if that is within protocol.
YOU’RE NOT DONE
To me, possibly one of the most important parts of the interview is the thank you note you send after.
*But wait, how do I have their information?*
THE BUSINESS CARD YOU ASKED FOR :)
Send a thank you note shortly after your interview. I usually do this the same day I had my interview, as soon as I get home. This is because you will be fresh in their minds, leave a great impression with being thoughtful, and can show your dedication with your interest in the job. Within your thank you note, be sure to note some key things you discussed during your interview, and specific points the interviewee told you about the role. Then, in the following paragraph, highlight your skillset as to why you are a good candidate for the role. Thank them again, and say you look forward to hearing from them!
OK, NOW YOU’RE DONE!
You did it! You aced that interview, and did everything you could. If you don’t get the job, that’s ok! It may have nothing to do with your interview and qualifications-there may just have been a candidate that had more of the skillset they are looking for. Going on interviews is great experience, in addition to making you more comfortable and confident going into future interview settings.
Remember: becoming a professional/expert does not happen overnight; it comes with experience, learning opportunities, and failure. That’s all for now ladies, I wish you all the best of luck in your future endeavors and hope this has been helpful to you. And remember…