By Jenifer Brown
An in-person interview is a professional business transaction where you are the salesperson and the product! No successful sales professional ever “closed the deal” without preparation!
Take a deep breath and relax
NOTE: Do not forget to turn off cellphones, tablets, etc. to ensure NO distractions.
Take the initiative
When entering a room for an interview, make the first move to introduce yourself with your hand outstretched for a firm handshake. (Your handshake should be firm whether meeting with a male or female).
This body language demonstrates you are enthusiastic about being there and interested in the company and the position.
It also demonstrates confidence and integrity.
Maintain direct eye contact
Eye contact should be maintained throughout the interview; however, looking away to gather a thought is normal.
Eye contact demonstrates confidence, honesty, interest level and enthusiasm.
Adapt your style to the interview type
When interviewing with human resources, your technical responses can be stated in general terms. However, when interviewing with a technical manager be as technically detailed as possible.
Human resources normally looks for personality behavioral traits to see if you would fit in the organization.
Although that is also a concern for technical managers, they tend to focus on whether or not you can handle the position technically.
Keep responses related
Always keep answers related to the topic, not to what you might feel is important in your background.
Many times job candidates go off on tangents that have nothing to do with the position.
Back up your response with an example
About 90 percent of the candidates respond to a question without backing up their statements. Use examples to add credibility and to help the interviewer visualize your capabilities.
Your examples should be directly related to the position for which you are applying.
Keep it positive
If you are asked why you left a company, always explain your departure in a positive manner.
Negativity makes interviewers uncomfortable and concerned that you might be the same with them.
Never bring up money/benefits
Discussions about money or benefits should not take place until a verbal offer has been made.
They may feel you are more concerned about the money or benefits than the opportunity or that you could be too easily enticed to change companies if a better offer came along.
Interviewers who bring up money and benefits during the interview (especially the first) are probably screening you to see if your expectations are in line with the budget allocated for the position or if you are realistic about your experience or background.
Never name a dollar figure; doing so at this early stage rarely helps you and could actually take you out of the running altogether. Most candidates say an amount that is either too high or lower than what the offer will be.
When it’s your turn, speak up
At the end of an interview, they will usually ask if you have any questions. On a psychological level, the interviewer has put the ball in your court and given you an opportunity to ask specific questions.
This is your chance to mention your related achievements or experiences that might not have come up.
Assume they want you
It is rare today for an employer to receive a written thank you so this really makes you stand out!
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