One of the most challenging tasks you’ll face throughout your career is differentiating yourself from other candidates. As resumes stack to the ceiling featuring applicants with similar levels of experience, the interview becomes your proving ground to make it clear you are the right choice.
Once the interview is scheduled, it is time to conduct more research into the company, the position, and who you will be interviewing with. Your goal in this process is to familiarize yourself with the company and to understand the core responsibilities of the position you are applying for. Your readiness to answer and ask questions related to the job will show you took the time to prepare and demonstrate your work ethic.
During the research process, learn all you can about the person(s) conducting your interview and the team members you will potentially be working with if hired. Great resources include LinkedIn profiles and the company’s website, where you can learn more about their professional experience and career. This will allow you to connect with the interviewer more directly, showing that you took the time to understand all facets of the position and have surpassed a basic understanding of the company.
Know Your Experience
One of the first questions typically used in an interview is a variation of ‘tell me about yourself,’ after which the interviewer will ask you to expand on your experience. The best way to prepare is to rehearse a brief but informative summary of your educational background and professional life. You can then supplement this with examples of how your past experience from each of the roles you have held is relevant to the opportunities offered at the new company.
Negative experiences with former employers can come up during an interview, so be ready to turn the conversation to the positive aspects of your previous employment. This way neither you nor your employer are portrayed in a negative light.
Show You’re Engaged
If you have completed your research and listened intently during the interview, you should have excellent questions ready for the interviewer at its conclusion. Put your knowledge to work with thoughtful questions about the position, the company, or even the industry. Examples include “What do you see as the most challenging aspect of this position?” or “What do want the person in this position to accomplish within the first three months? Six months? Year?”
You can also ask questions to learn more about the company’s values. Ask the interviewer what sets their company apart and follow up on how they expect to see those characteristics translated to the position by their ideal candidate. This will highlight your interest and qualification to exceed the basic functions of the position and align with the company more completely.
Let Your Personality Shine
Being prepared for an interview will help you to stand out, but your personality will give you the edge over other candidates. An interview is a nerve-wracking situation, but you want the interviewer to see who you are and what you’re like in spite of the pressure. The organic presentation of your personality will help the interviewer get to know you better as a person and serves as the ultimate indicator that you are the right choice for the position.
Send a Thank-You Note
Without exception, you must write and send a thank-you note within 24-hours of the interview. Not only is this a display of your professionalism, but what you include in the note serves as a writing sample for the employer. The email you send to thank them can be a deciding factor in whether or not you’re offered the job, so take it seriously!
At Gainor Staffing, We Pay Attention to You
In order for us to facilitate mutually beneficial relationships between our clients and candidates, we take the time to learn your unique skills and career goals to find the perfect employment fit. We get to know you and work with you along the way to make sure you’re ready in the interview, giving you an edge in the marketplace.