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A Brief Guide to Interviewing. Myrna Rudder Allen Rioux. Selling Yourself. No matter how qualified you are on paper, you still need to sell yourself to the people who have the authority to hire you. Preparation. Why Prepare?. preparation builds confidence

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a brief guide to interviewing

A Brief Guide to Interviewing

Myrna Rudder

Allen Rioux


Selling Yourself

No matter how qualified you are on paper, you still need to sell yourself to the people who have the authority to hire you.
why prepare
Why Prepare?
  • preparation builds confidence
  • improves the likelihood of success
  • reduces the possibility of surprises
  • enables you to handle “curveballs”
  • gives you the competitive edge
an interviewing fact
An Interviewing Fact
  • Approximately 75% of the interview is based upon
    • your appearance
    • how well you present yourself
  • Appearance also involves:
    • Attitude
    • Image
    • Verbal and non-verbal communication
dress conservatively
Dress Conservatively
  • Neat and Conservative is best
  • Do not wear heavy perfume or aftershave lotion
  • For women, do not wear too much jewelry, limit yourself to
    • a single necklace or chain
    • a ring
    • small button type earrings
  • For both, no piercings
dress conservatively7
Dress Conservatively
  • You should wear something that avoids directing the focus away from you and onto your clothes.
  • You should wear something that makes the interviewer think “professional” and “competent”.
different clothing types styles
Different Clothing Types/Styles
  • Professional Dress
      • Interview outfit
      • Daily clothing for professional office setting
  • Business Casual Dress
      • Dress down Fridays or casual office environment
      • Career Fair
  • Casual Dress
      • Company picnic
      • Traveling for work
grooming counts
Grooming Counts
  • An expensive suit will not compensate for dirty fingernails, messy hair, and wrinkled clothes
  • Good grooming indicates attention to detail and respect for others
double check
Double Check!
  • Be certain of the date, time, place, name of the organization and the interviewer’s name.
  • Never be late!
    • Be a few minutes early
    • Remember to make time for unforeseen circumstances such as traffic jams, difficulty with finding a parking place
  • Turn off your cell phone!
research the company
Research the Company

Know at least the following:

  • How old the company is
  • What its products or services are
  • Where its plants, offices or stores are located
  • What its growth has been
  • How its prospects look for the future
review your resume again
Review Your Resume - Again
  • Be prepared to answer questions about your
    • Education
    • Work Experience
    • Activities/Interests
    • Major
    • Grades
    • Goals
  • Be sure that what is on your resume is current and accurate and always be prepared to fill out an application upon arrival.
  • Know your references! Have them ready.
preparation tips
Preparation Tips
  • Prepare your answers for typical questions
  • Write down your success stories
  • Select your references
  • Learn about the organization and its people
  • Prepare the questions you will ask the interviewer about the job and the company
  • Select your clothing and have them dry-cleaned or laundered if necessary
how to craft a success story
How to Craft a Success Story
  • Think of a situation (work or school).
  • Explain when or where this situation took place.
  • Explain the situation? What obstacles, challenges or problems called for your action?
  • State the action you took?
  • Share the results or outcomes? Quantify those results – how many, how large, what percent?
  • Convey the transferable skills you used or learned that you can bring to the job.
practice makes perfect
Practice Makes Perfect
  • Practice interviewing with a friend
  • Schedule a Mock Interview with the Career Management Center, if this service is available
  • Practice in front of a mirror or a video camera
the greeting
The Greeting
  • Greet the interviewer by name as you enter the office.
    • if you are unsure of the pronunciation, ask!
    • ask for a business card
  • Take your cues from the interviewer.
  • Be sure to shake the interviewer’s hand firmly.
during the interview
During the Interview
  • Be frank and truthful in your answers – avoid being negative
  • Be enthusiastic about what you have done and what you can do
  • Project attentiveness
  • Ask for clarification if you do not understand any question
  • Be careful not to criticize former employers, professors, or anyone/anything for that matter!
during the interview23
During the Interview
  • Relate past experiences to the skills you will need for the job
    • Give specific examples
  • If asked about salary requirements avoid mentioning one specific amount
    • For co-op positions, refer the interviewer to Susan
  • When pressed for an answer:
    • The fair market value would be a good answer
    • You can refer the recruiter to the co-op office
recruiters are looking for
Recruiters Are Looking For
  • Ability to communicate – can you organize your thoughts and ideas effectively when writing or speaking? Can you present your ideas in a positive way.
  • Self-confidence – Can you demonstrate a sense of maturity and direction that enables you to deal positively and effectively with situations and people?
  • Willingness to accept responsibility – are you someone who recognizes what needs to be done? Are you willing to get it done? Are you willing to do more than what is required of you?
  • Flexibility – Are you capable of change and receptive to new ideas and situations?
recruiters are looking for25
Recruiters Are Looking For
  • Ability to handle conflict – Can you successfully contend with stress situations and antagonisms?
  • Competitiveness – Do you have the capacity to compete with others and a willingness to be measured by your performance in relation to that competition?
  • Goal achievement– Can you identify, work toward and obtain specific goals? Can you look ahead, anticipate the future and make long-range plans?
  • Level of Initiative – Can you identify purposeful work and take action? Do you always wait to be told what to do?
recruiters are looking for26
Recruiters Are Looking For
  • Possession of technical skills or ability to achieve them – Do you possess the skills necessary for the particular job or do you have the ability to learn them
  • Direction – Do you know where you want to be in two or three years? Do you know enough about your field to know the different opportunities available and what type of position will satisfy your knowledge and goals?
  • Level of energy – Are you ambitious? Do you possess drive? Can you take charge of a situation? Would you be willing to put in extra time and time to accomplish a specific task
recruiters are looking for27
Recruiters Are Looking For
  • Interpersonal skills – Can you get along with people who are different from you in any respect? Can you work with them toward a common goal in a professional manner?
  • Leadership– Do you have the ability to gain people’s respect and confidence? Can you organize and direct a group of people? Can you delegate responsibilities?
  • Knowledge of the company – Are you familiar with the company’s products and services; potential growth areas?
recruiters may ask
Recruiters May Ask
  • What are your future career plans?
  • What do you see yourself doing 5 or 10 years from now?
  • In what school activities have you participated? Which did you enjoy most?
  • In what type of position are you most interested?
  • What are the reasons for which you might like to work for our company?
  • What courses did you like best? Least?
  • What kind of boss do you prefer?
recruiters may ask29
Recruiters May Ask
  • What were the reasons for your choice in college major?
  • What interests you about our product or service?
  • Do you feel you have done the best scholastic work of which you are capable?
  • What are your major strengths? Weaknesses?
  • How would a professor, colleague or previous supervisor describe you?
  • What would be the benefit to us of your joining our organization?
ten rules for interviewing
Ten Rules for Interviewing
  • Keep your answers brief and concise
  • 2. Include concrete, quantifiable data
  • 3. Repeat your key strengths three times
  • 4. Prepare five or more success stories
  • 5. Put yourself on their team
  • 6. Image is often as important as content
  • 7. Ask questions
  • 8. Maintain a conversational flow
  • 9. Research the company, product lines and competitors
  • 10. Keep an interview journal
questions you may ask
Questions You May Ask
  • What would be a typical assignment/day?
  • What type of training/orientation would I have?
  • What might I expect in terms of job progression?
  • How does this particular department fit into the entire structure of the organization?
  • Do you have any recent graduates (or co-op students) from UT or Engineering working at your company?
  • How long have you been with the company? What are the positive factors? Negative?
  • Be alert to signs from the interviewer that the session is closing.
  • Thank the interviewer at the close of the interview.
  • Ask what the next step will be.
follow up
  • Send a well-written thank-you letter within 24 hours.
    • An emailed thank-you is okay but also send a formal one.
  • Include a reiteration of the job as you understand it, points you may have forgotten to mention, and a response to any concerns expressed.
    • Restate that you want the job and describe how you will follow up.
  • Keep in contact with the interviewer.
    • Remember to be courteous, respectful and professional.
    • The recruiter may recommend you for something else if you do not land the current position.
  • Keep in contact with the co-op office
in summary
In Summary …
  • Prepare
  • Practice
  • Project
    • professionalism
    • maturity
    • confidence
  • Any Questions?