A couple of weeks ago I received a tweet from an excited jobseeker who wrote that she finally got her first 2 interviews after a 6 month drought. We had been corresponding about her struggles to appeal to the hiring managers in her field within her city.
After a few tweets and e-mails and some simple advice on how to enhance her presence, she began working on this tirelessly. As a result, she got the interviews.
Two days later she followed up to let me know that she did not get either job.
I asked her where she felt things went awry? She said she felt like the interviews went well but wasn’t sure where she fell short.
The next day I attended a networking program where the speaker was Sam Richter, internet search guru and author of “Take The Cold Out Of Cold Calling“. I took a number of his suggestions geared toward client and company sales calls and tailored them to hiring managers and interviews.
After all, in every interview you are tasked with selling yourself to the hiring manager as a way of landing the job. The best way to do so is to prepare, prepare, prepare.
I walked her through the following interview prep exercise and asked how many of these things she did prior to the interview, her answer…ONE !!! Walk yourself through this list and see how many you do before interviewing with a company.
1) Did you go to the website of the company and familiarize yourself with their business, products, mission, values, locations, etc.
2) Did you Google the company for recent news, press releases, and any other applicable news about them.
3) Did you get the name of the person/people you were going to interview with?
4) Did you find them on LinkedIn and see if you have any connections in common? If so, did you contact them to learn more about the interviewer and possibly have them call to give you a recommendation?
5) Did you Google the interviewer(s) to see if there has been anything significant written by them or about them?
6) Did you study the job requirement to make sure you were prepared to explain your experience and how it related to the each required and desired skill?
7) Did you go to their company LinkedIn page and study their stats, demographics, etc.
Did you study your resume (I know this one sounds crazy, but when nervous you should leave nothing to chance).
9) Did you prepare questions to ask them? Many interviewers use your questions as a way of understanding your fact finding skills first hand.
10) Did you ask if their would be time for Q & A at the end of the interview or would they prefer that you ask questions as you think of them?
12) Did you bring a note pad to write down the questions or thoughts during the interview?
11) Most of all, did you try to close them for a decision. Did you ask for the job?
These are just some of the ways to better prepare for your next interview. The point is, those who do not prepare for interviews are likely to lose out to those who do.