Easy Rules Of Interview Etiquette That Keep You Poised And Looking Great

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Job interview etiquette is important for obvious reasons. Apart from helping you land your dream job, it makes the whole experience much more pleasant for both parties.

Just follow the following simple rules of interview etiquette and be confident that you are putting your best foot forward.

  • Arrive about 10 to 15 minutes early, not earlier than that. And definitely not after the scheduled time! Travel the route you have to take to the interviewer’s office the day before, so that you know how long it takes.
  • Dress in business attire, even if the office allows casual wear. T shirts, flip flops, etc are best avoided.
  • Be polite to everyone you meet, including the receptionist, if there is one. After all, any of them might be asked what they thought of you.
  • Turn off your cell phone. And whatever you do, DO NOT check social media while the interview is on!
  • Do refer to the interviewer by name.
  • Be alert and interested from beginning to end.
  • Sit up straight without being rigid. It is fine to lean forward a bit, as this indicates interest. Don’t overdo anything, though.
  • Be calm and confident but never egotistical or aggressive.
  • Use a firm handshake and a sincere smile. Put your hand out and clasp gently but firmly. Not too little pressure, nor too much. Practice with a friend beforehand, if need be. 
  • Project keen interest in the company and the interviewers; never act disinterested.
  • Be positive and confident – never get defensive at any question or comment at job interviews.
  • Maintain eye contact with the interviewer without crossing the boundary into staring.
  • Don’t ask for refreshments of any kind.
  • Speak of your accomplishments with specific examples.
  • Don’t put down any former employer or colleagues.
  • When asking them questions, be sure to ask about aspects other than just money.
  • Don’t excuse yourself to go to the bathroom during the interview.
  • At the end of the interview, say thank you.
  • Follow up by email and thank each person who interviewed you. Look up the organization’s website to get their names spelled correct and for their exact designations.

Follow these simple interview etiquette rules and you’ll come out way ahead of competitors who violate them!

Job Interview Buzz Words – Concepts You Can Use To Get The Job You Want

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There are three interview buzz words that are considered most important by companies. In fact, these three are the cornerstones on which the whole interviewing process is based. If you understand what’s behind these job interview buzz words, you’ll enhance your chances of success greatly.

So what are these job interview buzz words? Let’s take them one at a time.

The first buzz word: Capability

This concept is all about finding out “Can this candidate do the job well?” If you’re the job seeker, your role is to convince the employer that you can indeed do the job well. How do you do that?

You do it by providing hard evidence of your performance in the past. You need to have examples of specific performances / accomplishment ready along with details like numbers. You must be able to prove that you have relevant experience, and have produced specific results.

Of course, you should be able to demonstrate you have relevant knowledge about your area.

Second buzz word: Fit

The interviewer wants to know, “Can this person fit into my organization and work?”

Even if the job hunter demonstrates that he or she can do the job well, that alone is not enough. If the interviewer gets the feeling that the candidate somehow does not ‘belong’ to that organization, he may not be selected.

You’ll find ideas about ‘fit’ throughout this site.

Third buzz word: Desire

Let’s say the job seeker is fully capable of doing the job and seems to fit in well. The next question is, “Does he want the job?”

To prove this, you must not only be enthusiastic and state that you’d like to have the job, but must back up your claim of interest in the company by proving that you know something about them. In other words, the background research you’ve done must show through.

That’s how they’ll get convinced that you really want the job.

Plan your preparation around these job interview buzz words and you’ll come out far ahead of most candidates. See other pages on this site as well as this resource for more information.

6 deadly interview bloopers that can torpedo your chances of success

Home » Interview Bloopers

If you’re guilty of one or more of these interview bloopers, you drastically reduce your chances at job interviews. Unfortunately, job hunters make these huge mistakes time and again.

One of the best things you can do to get that job is to just avoid these issues. Here are the big six – and ways you can avoid them.

1. Being unprepared

This is one of the biggest mistakes of them all.

The path of least resistance is to appear for interviews totally unprepared and wing your way through it.

Now, this approach has landed jobs for people.

However, the fact that it works sometimes only adds to the danger. It masks the greater fact that it does not work much of the time. That’s why its one of the big no-nos.

What does being prepared mean? Well, this entire site is, in a sense, an answer to that question. But specifically, here is a page with a great list of common interview questions and answers, to get you started. Check it out!

2. Thinking that you have nothing to offer

The only reason they will hire you is because you can help solve some of their problems. Or achieve certain results. You have something solid to contribute.

Yet, most candidates behave as if the only party who has something to offer is the person doing the interviewing.

That breeds lack of confidence like a dirty, stagnant ditch breeds mosquitoes. It’s a big blooper with a cascading effect which can cause the interviewee to trip up at critical moments.

Unless you can get your thinking straight on this point, you will be afraid and unsure.

Yes, an interviewer will judge you. But it is up to you to judge him and his organization as well.

3. Going without the fire inside you

No enthusiasm inside you, no ‘fire’ inside. This is often the result of the first two mistakes listed above.

When you are unprepared and believe that you do not have anything to offer – you end up with no enthusiasm at all.

In fact, far from being enthusiastic, you are probably filled with fear and misgivings.

Being enthusiastic simply means having a feeling of energy and eagerness when you contemplate your potential new job and therefore by extension, the interview you are about to attend.

You can certainly be a very quiet, introverted person and yet be very enthusiastic. Because enthusiasm has nothing to do with introversion / extroversion in the first place.

But the fact is – your enthusiasm or lack of it will cause a similar response in the interviewer. You can’t expect an interviewer to be enthusiastic about you when you are not.

So make sure you take all steps to light your fire and avoid yet another common job interview blooper.

4. Thinking your interview ends at the interview

Many candidates do just that. They leave an interview and then wait by the phone, hoping it will ring with a job offer at the other end.

That happens. But the game is all about improving your chances of landing the job you want. You want to make things happen.

Lack of good follow up can mean that you do not get the job. Because it may have gone to someone else who is doing a good job of following up.

The good news is, effective follow up after job interviews is not all that difficult. See this page for ideas about interview thank you letters.

5. Not demonstrating what you can do for them

The most effective way to respond to questions at interviews is to tell them real examples of how you achieved certain results or solved specific problems in the past.

You must let your potential employers know how you can be useful to them. That’s what the preparation, the interview tactics and the follow up are all about.

Many job hunters treat the interviewers to dull recitals of their background, or their educational qualifications, etc. Such answers are big interview bloopers.

Before, during and after the interview, be ever willing to look at things from the other person’s point of view. Then you will be able to demonstrate how you can create value for them.

6. Not relating well enough to the interviewer

Think about it.

Who would you prefer to hire — someone who comes across as relaxed and engaging, or someone who seems tense and aloof?

The answer is obvious.

Yet, many job seekers come across as stiff and stressed out. This can hurt their chances quite a bit.

Remember, the interviewer is a professional like you who is looking to solve a problem. Relate to him or her by being relaxed and pleasant, and keep the interaction going back and forth in a natural fashion.

In other words, be yourself!

Candidates make these six deadly interview bloopers every day. Avoid them and have a successful job hunt!

The Truth About What To Wear For A Job Interview

Home » What To Wear For A Job Interview

What you wear at a job interview is important because a book IS judged by its cover! Sure, it’s not right. A book should be judged by its contents.

But it isn’t. Your opinion of a book is already half-formed when you look at the cover. So you must pay attention to interview attire. That’s why you need to plan it thoughtfully in advance.

The interviewer’s impression depends on the extent to which your clothes are appropriate to the occasion. That’s the basic fact about interview attire.

Here’s a simple way to determine what your attire should be. Find out what people in that industry or profession are wearing and dress slightly more conservatively than them. That way, you are almost always safe.

This is the easiest way to decide what to wear for a job interview. Of course, whatever you choose to wear must suit you as a person.

Now, what is considered appropriate attire depends on the kind of job that you target. If you are an archaeologist who is interviewing with a senior archaeologist in a field where he is doing excavation, you might well dress in a casual fashion.

If you are trying to get hired as a business development manager with a large multinational firm, then of course, you would probably dress in a very formal fashion, in a suit.

Your dressing should be appropriate to the level or position that you are trying to get, keeping in mind the norms of the industry. In particular, if you aspire for a job at a higher level that you are currently, your dressing and outer demeanor has to reflect what is appropriate for the new position.

In general, you may be better off maintaining a formal wardrobe of high quality, somewhat expensive clothes which you use only for special purposes like interviews than buying relatively cheap clothing in large numbers.

The latter is of course, fine for your casual, everyday wear wardrobe. This is about your special purpose wardrobe in a situation where you need to conserve cash and yet look terrific.

In fact, you can have just a couple of good suits and vary the tie, shirt and other accessories to give them a different look at different times.

Conservative, old time industries like banking, consulting, law and many areas of business require you to dress in a sober fashion, with subtle, understated colors.

Other industries like entertainment, advertising, technology, etc permit the use of bolder, more casual colors as well as dressing. But an interview is never an occasion for sloppy dressing or for overly flashy dressing.

If you’re not comfortable with formal interview attire, take the effort to dress formally several times before the interview. Perhaps you can go to a wedding or other social function in formal wear.

If you have purchased a new suit or dress, wear it on at least one occasion before the interview. You must not be uncomfortable or feel stifled when appearing for the interview.

For men, a clean, white shirt is often the best bet. If you wear a jacket or a suit, ensure that the sleeves are long enough – it looks odd to have too much of your shirtsleeve sticking out. And wear your jacket without a gap between the back of your neck and the jacket collar.

Apart from dress, pay close attention to your personal grooming. Everything from neat hair to cut nails to being on guard against body odor and bad breath is important.

Do you know that people sometimes lose jobs because the interviewers can’t stand the bad breath or body odor? There are plenty of good products available in the market which can neutralize both problems, so there should be no excuse for not using them.

Three secrets to successfully fielding tough job interview questions

Home » Three Secrets To Fielding Interview Questions

It is important to anticipate interview questions and prepare them. At the same time, your responses should be sound natural and not come across as if you memorized them. This is a mistake many job seekers make when preparing for interview questions.

Ensure that you are clear about the core ideas you are projecting — your accomplishments, skills, strengths, etc. That’s one of the best tips for interviews. You can even rehearse these responses to interview questions.

But do not memorize a written script word for word. Just remember the key ideas you want to convey and let the words flow at that specific time. That’s the first secret to dealing with questions.

The second secret is to light their fire. What does that mean?

One of the most overused, yet highly relevant words in connection with interviews is enthusiasm.

If you project enthusiasm and energy, you can see the other person lighting up as well. Perhaps not always, but the effect is there, although interviewers sometimes try to maintain a poker face and not give away their feelings via body language.

Some job hunters maintain a bland, detached expression and body language answering questions at interviews. That’s a big mistake. So is speaking in a monotone, with no voice modulation.

Make sure that you radiate enthusiasm and energy, speak in an appropriately modulated voice. You can light their fire easily if you have yours burning brightly.

One of the most effective actions you can take in interview situations is to smile often!

A sincere, confident smile. Not one of those plastic varieties which appear to be fixed permanently on the face. Even smiling should not be overdone.

More than once, recruiters have told me that they hired someone over another equally qualified candidate because the former was a pleasant person who smiled a lot.

Now, I don’t know whether that’s rational or logical. But I do know it works. Remember the power of a sincere smile — and use it as your secret weapon!

These three secrets can take you a long way when you are responding to interview questions.

Need some help in tackling an upcoming job interview? Check out this resource. This can help even if you are short on time.

The easy, simple way to improving listening skills at job interviews

Home » Improving Listening Skills

One of the keys to success at interviews is having good listening skills. You know the best way to irritate an interviewer? Just interrupt him mid-sentence and start answering his question before it’s finished.

And then discover that you gave a perfect answer – to the wrong question! If this has happened to you, think seriously about improving listening skills. That’s one of the most useful job interview tips.

The most direct benefit of careful, attentive listening is that you get to hear exactly what the question or comment is!

You won’t believe how many people seem to have trouble with this. They just can’t wait to interrupt someone else and start hearing their own voice.

The other – and very important – benefit is that attentive listening is actually a subtle compliment to the interviewer. It means that you value him and what he has to say highly enough to listen completely and carefully and only then reply.

When you want that job, doesn’t it make sense to compliment the interviewer, especially in such a subtle and effective manner? Improving listening skills has huge payoffs.

If you have trouble with this, make it a point to consciously listen carefully when someone is saying something. Start doing this immediately, whether the interview is one hour off or one month away.

You’ll then be much better prepared with answers to tough interviewing questions.

If you are even the slightest bit unsure about the question, rephrase the interviewer’s question saying “If I understand you correctly, .….(rephrase in your own words).

Do this once or twice during the interview even if you’re sure you heard him correctly. Obviously, don’t overdo it by rephrasing every question they ask you!

That’s the simple and easy way to improving listening skills at job interviews.

How To Confirm A Job Interview In Writing

Home » How To Confirm A Job Interview In Writing

After you receive an interview call, you should know how to confirm the job interview in writing, if that’s required. Here’s how you can write a confirmation note to the employer.

Dear (Name),

Thank you for your consideration in calling me for an interview for the position of (name the position you’re applying for).

In line with our phone conversation today, I’m confirming that I’ll be attending the interview on (date) at (time), at (place).

I’m looking forward to meeting you to discuss the results you can expect from me.

Your Name, etc.

And that’s all there is to it, whether you send it by email or as an old fashioned letter.

Now that you know how simple this is, go ahead and do it. Take the time to prepare well for interviews and come out ahead!

Meeting with your prospective boss — Interview questions and best approaches

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Before getting into interview questions, a few basics. This is usually the most critical interview in the hiring process. The manager you report to or those at 1 — 2 levels above him are usually the key decision makers. That makes these free interview questions very important.

Interviews with your bosses are likely to be technical and will get into the nitty-gritty of your work and your accomplishments. Therefore these free interview questions and the kinds of answer to questions in interview you must give are tailored accordingly.

Your boss is primarily interested in one thing – can you create results for him and help him meet his objectives? You need to compellingly showcase your background, your work and accomplishments.

You need to develop what we call contribution statements. They’re short, verbal snapshots of what you can do for them and a demonstration of your skills. You will have to describe ways in which you made a difference in your previous work.

Summarize your key accomplishments and skills with specific examples of each.

This is where your preparation, including fact gathering about this organization, can come in handy. If you have taken the trouble to learn as much as possible about present and future challenges of this organization, you can show how you can help solve those problems or add value in other ways to his work.

Typically, the manager interviewing you is also keen to fill the position and have a competent person on the job as soon as possible. He’s hiring because he needs someone to do a job and produce certain results.

Therefore, in a real sense, he wants you to succeed at this interview and later, at the job. Carry this thought with you.

Here’s a list of common free interview questions and the sort of answers you should be giving. Check it out now.

Know effective answers to these executive interview questions – and get a real edge

Home » Executive Interview Questions

Given the highly competitive business environment, executive interview questions today are aimed at making sure that only the right person gets hired. That’s why effective preparation is the key to landing good jobs. This selection of executive interview questions needs to be considered carefully.

Dig up facts about the company, industry and the persons you’re meeting. And of course, about the job itself. That’ll give you the foundation to tackle these executive interview questions. Look thru the rest of the site for free interview answers.

  • The most common opening question in job interviews: Tell me a bit about yourself. (See this resource on interview answers for an exact strategy on answering it)
  • Give me an example of how your major weakness has caused problems at your job
  • What three words describe you?
  • In a group setting, are you generally a leader or a follower?
  • How did you define success when you were in college? How do you define it now?
  • What makes you think you will fit in with our company?
  • How have your job responsibilities evolved since your joined your present employer?
  • Tell me how you handled a major challenge at the workplace?
  • What is your approach to dealing with recalcitrant staff?
  • How much leeway do you need in decision making?
  • How do you motivate your staff?
  • According to you, what’s the major issue facing this industry today? How will you handle it?
  • How well networked are you with peers in this and other industries?
  • Describe your ideal job?

These executive interview questions aim to reveal the real you. The preparation you do will definitely stand you in good stead.

The untold story of second interview questions for candidates

Home » Second Interview Questions For Candidates

What do round two interview questions really focus on? Well, you know that if you’ve been called back for a follow up meeting, you’ve made the first cut. In most cases, second interview questions focus on the issue of fit.

They already know you can do the job. Now they want to make sure you’ll fit in and that you actually want the job. That’s what employment second interview questions are all about.

That being the case, the second interview will not focus on basic information, your background, etc, in most cases. They want to get to know you as a person.

There are two common traps you can fall into. One, you might get overconfident thinking the second interview is just a formality to get over with. That may not be the case. Second, you might go to the other extreme and put yourself under severe stress. That’s unnecessary too.

Do be vigilant and take the second interview seriously. You should focus on developing a good rapport with the interviewers. That’s important.

Ask them if they have anything that stands in the way of selecting you for the job. Often, this will reveal any objections / doubts they have in mind. And you’re now able to overcome those objections.

Also ask them where they are in the decision process, the time-frame involved and what the next step is.

If you keep these points in mind, you’ll find it easier to deal with all second interview questions that come your way. Follow the previous link to find more about questions and possible answers.