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Interview Tips

  • Arrive 10-15 minutes early, but only go in about 5-10 minutes early.
  • Dress professionally – business dress.
  • Review the Company website and be familiar with their business.
  • Be yourself.
  • Be honest about your experience and your limitations. Also be confident in what you do know.  If there is something you don’t know, tell them you are eager to learn it.
  • When you go to an in-person interview be sure to shake hands firmly and smile when you greet people.  A smile makes a huge
  • Listen first and then respond.
  • Be Positive – refrain from stating any negatives regarding former employers
  • Definitely don’t interrupt and don’t come across as very chatty.  Nerves tend to make some people talk more.  And make sure that you do answer questions rather than going off on a tangent. It can happen quite easily.
  • Have a couple of questions ready that show that you did some homework on the company.
  • Don’t talk about pay.  I repeat, do not talk about pay – leave that to us.  We’re expert at it and, the more you make the more we do so our interests are aligned with yours.
  • If you are talking to multiple people, be sure to make nearly equal eye contact with all of them – do not just focus your attention on the highest ranking person in the room, nor more on men than women or vice versa.
  • Assume you are being watched from the moment you pull into the parking lot. There are a lot of companies that have their receptionist (or someone else) watch people and report anything they noticed.
  • Treat the receptionist VERY well! Many times candidates are ruled out just because of the way they interact with a receptionist.  Smile, introduce yourself, and don’t just treat them like they are there only to call somebody down to meet you.
  • If at the end of your interview, you continue being interested, let the Interviewer know – say it! If you’re on the fence about it, say it anyway!  Often as the idea of making a change gets real people get nervous, but after they think about it for a while they realize they do want the job.  If you don’t leave them feeling like you’re eager to have the job you may have already lost the opportunity.
  • Ask the interviewer: “What’s the company’s biggest threat to success this year, and how will I be able to help overcome it in this role?”
  • Read “10 Essentials for Your Interview.”
  • Click Here to check out “10 Ways to Impress During an Interview” (you must have a LinkedIn account to view this). And again, Be Yourself, you will be terrific!


Interview Questions That You May Want to Ask

  1. If I were to start tomorrow, what would be the top priority on my to-do list?
    The answer to this question will give you more insight into the current state of the position, while the question shows that you’re invested and interested in learning how you can start things off with a bang. The added bonus lies in the Jedi mind trick: now you’ve already got your interviewer picturing you as the position holder.
  2. What would you say are the top two personality traits someone needs to do this job well?
    The answer to this will be very telling. “Creative” and “intuitive” can be translated to mean you will be on your own, while “patient” and “collaborative” could mean the opposite. Not only will this question allow you to feel out whether you’re going to be a good fit; it will also get your interviewer to look past the paper resume and see you as an individual.
  3. What improvements or changes do you hope the new candidate will bring to this position?
    This answer can shed light on what might have made the last person lose (or leave) the job, and it also tips you off on the path to success. Asking this shows an employer you are eager to be the best candidate to ever fill this position.
  4. I know this company prides itself on X and Y, so what would you say is the most important aspect of your culture?
    This type of question is sure to impress, as it shows that you’ve done your research on the company and gives you a chance to gain insight into what values are held to the highest ideal.
  5. Do you like working here?
    This question might take interviewers back a bit, but their answer will be telling. A good sign is a confident smile and an enthusiastic “yes” paired with an explanation as to why. If they shift in their seat, look away, cough and start with “Well…”, consider it a red flag.Regardless of their answer, employers appreciate getting a chance to reflect on their own opinions, and this turns the interview process into more of a conversation.
  6. Is there anything that stands out to you that makes you think I might not be the right fit for this job?
    Yes, asking this question can be scary, but it can also be beneficial. Not only does it give you a chance to redeem any hesitations the employer might have about you; it also demonstrates that you can take constructive criticism and are eager to improve—valuable qualities in any candidate. Read More from the Brazen Careerist Blog


Other Interview Questions That You May Want to Ask

Ask questions such as:  “What’s the company’s biggest threat to success this year, and how will I be able to help overcome it in this role?”.  Other questions to ask include:

  1. What are the training and development opportunities?
    A PwC study tells us that one of the main reasons that people leave businesses is due to a lack of career progression. Candidates know that training and development improves their skills and increases their chances of career progression; so, top candidates will want to know about training and development opportunities. Make sure to respond in detail, explaining your formal and informal training and development opportunities. Also explain how candidates can access this training. If training budgets are small, focus on how your business uses coaching, mentoring, experiential learning, stretch assignments and job rotation to train staff.
  2. What is the career progression potential at your business
    Top candidates want to progress, so explain where internal roles are advertised and how they can apply, and describe one or two employees who have started low and progressed through the business to really demonstrate career potential in your firm. If you are a smaller business lacking formal role-based, career progression, explain how candidates can grow and increase their responsibilities and salary in your firm.
  3. What is the company culture at the business?
    Culture fit is key today, not just from the employer side. Top candidates want to work in a positive culture that they respect and is line with their values. So explain the values by which employees and managers operate in as positive and as honest a light as possible. Make sure it’s not too glossy (unless it truly is perfect!) as it won’t sound credible; so, you might want to outline one or two areas for improvement too.
  4. What is your personal management style?
    Studies show that one of the main reasons that employees leave and fail to meet their performance goals is a lack of rapport with their direct line manager. Good candidates know that it is important to gel with their line manager. So be open and honest about your management style, e.g. hands on/ hands off, or democratic/authoritarian etc., so the candidate can make an informed decision about his or her potential fit.
  5. How do you plan to deal with changes in the market?
    The best candidates will be commercially minded and will have SWOTTED up on your business model. They will know the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats in your business area and will want to know how your business is planning to address them. You need to show that you are a strategically led company that can adapt to the environment by outlining how you plan to address any known weaknesses or risks to your business and/or how you plan to exploit emerging opportunities.
  6.  How do your employees wind down?
    All employees who work hard and smart know that they need time to wind down to sustain performance and health over the long term. You don’t want to give the impression of supporting a workaholic environment, so, of course, explain how you value employee health and talk about your wellness programs and commitment to work-life balance.


25 Questions To Ask at the End of An Interview

  1. Have I answered all your questions? Do you need any more details to help with the decision?
  2. Where do you see the company in 5 years?
  3. What do I need to accomplish in the first 90 days to be successful?
  4. What are your expectations of the role?
  5. Who do you consider the company’s top competitor and why?
  6. Why are you better than your competitors?
  7. Describe the company culture?
  8. What do you like most about working with this company?
  9. What are the challenges of this position?
  10. Describe a ‘typical’ day for this role?
  11. How do you help your team grow professionally?
  12. Is this a new position? If yes, what problem does it solve? If not, why did the previous employee leave?
  13. Will I meet any of the team members during the interview process?
  14. How do you evaluate success? And celebrate it?
  15. What is your timeline for deciding on the role and when can I expect to hear from you?
  16. What is the most interesting project you have worked on while here? And why?
  17. What do you consider your biggest achievement while at this company?
  18. What concerns do you have at this stage?
  19. What is your biggest mistake in business and what did you learn consequently?
  20. What will be my biggest roadblock in this role?
  21. What is the future of this role?
  22. How do I compare with other candidates?
  23. When it comes to work, what keeps you up at night?
  24. What qualities does the candidate need to excel at this role?
  25. Can people develop quickly here? Do you help Candidates develop professionally?

Things to Avoid

Check out this video about what to avoid doing during an interview.

Things to Bring with You

Check out this article on things to bring to an interview.


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