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Preparing for an InterviewJob Interviews


Should you be called for an interview, it is important that you properly prepare to sell yourself as an ideal candidate.


10 Critical Success Factors nearly every company is looking for:

  1. Positive attitude toward work
  2. Proficiency in field of study
  3. Communication skills (oral and written)
  4. Interpersonal skills
  5. Confidence
  6. Critical thinking and problem solving skills
  7. Flexibility
  8. Self-motivation
  9. Leadership
  10. Teamwork

In the first five minutes, the interviewer will note:

  • your appearance
  • your grooming
  • your handshake
  • your personal presence
  • your eye contact
  • your articulation
  • your personality

Learn more about the position and organization:

  • Research the organization; if they have a web site, explore the various departments
  • Talk to employees who work for the organization
  • Call an employee currently working in the position you are being interviewed for
  • Find out who is the president or head of the organization, how long the organization has been in business

Rehearse answers to potential questions:

  • Learn the kinds of questions you may be asked and practice the best answers
  • Learn to express your weaknesses as positively as possible
  • Practice mock interviews with a friend

Practice reciting highlights of your qualifications:

  • Know three good reasons why you are an outstanding candidate and work them into your responses
  • The goal of an interview is to have you effectively communicate your skills and abilities

Dress professionally and be well-groomed:

  • Dress for success. Make a favourable first impression
  • Avoid wearing too much cologne or perfume
  • Your hair should be clean and well-groomed
  • Shoes should be polished and coordinate with your suit or dress

Arrive early:

Give yourself lots of time to find the location, park and relax prior to the interview

During the interview:

  • Shake hands firmly and don't take a seat until asked
  • Don't slouch, and always maintain eye contact with the interviewer(s)
  • Speak in a firm, confident voice and always present a positive attitude
  • Avoid saying "uhmm". Take a deep breath, reflect on the question, and organize your thoughts before proceeding with your answer
  • Listen to the interviewer(s) carefully; make sure you respond to the entire question; don't be afraid to ask the interviewer to repeat the question
  • Being positive about your past experiences, relays a message that you most likely will be positive about future employers
  • Bring any notes along with you that you feel would help you


Whether you did or didn't include reference names in your resume, bring to your interview a list of three work related references

Ask questions:

  • Prior to your interview, develop and prepare a set of questions to ask the interviewer; ensure that your queries are not covered on their web site
  • Ask relevant questions during the interview
  • Learn what happens next 

Points of Interest

Last updated:
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
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