• Tutorial on how to "score big" at job interviews
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"Preparing Yourself For Job Interviews..."

  It is a real shame that many job seekers spend endless hours doing everything necessary to obtain good interviews, but then fail to prepare themselves for those interviews and thereby waste what could have been a career-changing moment. 

Here is a proven series of steps you can easily do to make yourself a more effective interviewee: 

  1. Research the target company.  Use the Internet and library business sections to find out everything possible.  The corporate web site, trade association, professional groups and networking can also be helpful in gathering relevant data.
  2. Learn as much as possible about the specific job.  Try to obtain a job description before the meeting.  Evaluate the key qualifications and how you match up.
  3. Develop your Communications Strategy.  Plan your opening statement, discussion of your background and what key skills to highlight.
  4. Prepare to answer difficult questions: “Tell me about yourself,” “Why should we hire you?” “What are your biggest liabilities?” among others.
  5. Plan and rehearse short, 60-90 second example stories illustrating your primary abilities/skills.  Be specific and try to include quantifiable (numbers, dollars, percentages) results.
  6. Use your research to ask questions about the company.  This demonstrates your knowledge and, while the interviewer is talking, gives you time to rest and think.
  7. Plan and practice statements to buy more time when the “money” questions arise (How much do you make? How much are you looking for?).  Example:  Mr. Jones, I can appreciate why you ask that, however I wonder if I could learn more about your needs so we can determine if I am a viable candidate before getting into pre-offer issues like money?
  8. Dress appropriately.  That does not necessarily mean a high-end fashion look.  Try to find out what “business standard” is in the company.  Or, ask the interviewer during the phone invitation what would be appropriate.  If you can’t find out anything, the safest bet is to dress in formal business attire.
  9. Don’t be late!  Nothing can sour a relationship faster than arriving past the interview hour, flustered, embarrassed and mouthing excuses.  Study and plan the route.  Drive it beforehand, learn traffic patterns for the time of day you are scheduled to be there.  Leave early and grab a cup of coffee down the street.  That way, you know you will be on time.

  If you do all this, you will be a very effective interview candidate and might even grow to enjoy the process.

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