“For the things we have to learn before we can do, we learn by doing.” – Aristotle
Just like actors who “role play” as part of their training to learn their craft, we need to role play the interview process. The best way to sharpen your interview skills is to practice interviewing. Even 20-plus year professionals need to re-fresh their skills. Planning ahead and anticipating the kinds of interview questions which may be ask is the best place to start. Gaining rapport from the outset is important for you to master. However, keep in mind it’s important to let the interviewer control the flow. The inevitable “tell me about yourself” question will be posed to you. Keep your answer to 2-minutes or less. Employers are not looking for your life story! Your ability to put your answers into capsule styled answers is very important. Be prepared to discuss key segments of your experience and achievements. Have at your fingertips the ability to articulate 3 to 5 achievements for each position you have held during your career. Of course, questions regarding your strengths and weaknesses will come up. Reasons for leaving past employers will be asked. Most importantly, be prepared to discuss why you are interested in the organization and what appeals to you about the position. Be prepared to articulate how your background and experience fit the role. To do these things effectively, you must research the organization and re-read the position specification to determine how your background lines-up.
It’s important to practice making a great impression that will position you ahead of the competition. The best way to do that – PRACTICE.
Until next time…