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Effective Interviewing

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Five Strategies for Effective Interviewing
1. Research – It is essential to thoroughly investigate the company or organization which you are applying to. Research can include navigating the company’s website, looking up past reports, browsing different positions and their importance to the company, and also what the mission statement of the company is. Not only is it important to research the company itself, but also the person who will be interviewing you. Knowledge of the company and the interviewer are impressive ways to show that you are highly interested in the position which you are interviewing for. Also, knowing about the position will help you prepare a list of qualifications so that you can easily prove that you are the best candidate for the job.
2. Prepare – Being prepared for an interview shows responsibility and initiative. A beneficial way to ensure that the interview will run smoothly is to have someone ask you practice questions commonly asked in an interview. By doing this, the person asking the questions can give constructive criticism on your speaking skills, mannerisms, and body language. While it is great to have answers prepared, you must keep in mind that the answers should not sound scripted. An interview should be a natural way to speak about yourself and showcase your best qualities.
3. Dress Appropriately – First impressions are incredibly important during the interview process. Wearing professional attire cannot be stressed enough. There are different general rules depending on your gender. Women should remember to avoid wearing too much jewelry, perfume, or make-up. Less is always more! Men, too, should avoid spraying on too much cologne. A collared shirt and dress pants with simple, closed toe shoes is a timeless outfit for a woman to wear to an interview. It is very standard for men to wear a clean, tailored suit. It is also important to feel confident and comfortable in your choice of clothing. Some companies may have a more informal dress code, but regardless, you can never be overdressed for an interview. Dressing for success will make a positive impression to your interviewer.
4. Show Interest – As stated above, a great way to show that you are interested in a job is to demonstrate that you have done some research prior to the interview. Preparing a list of questions regarding what the job entails and what the future plans of the company are shows interest in what lies ahead for the company. Interviewers are often impressed when the person they are interviewing is able to ask questions and build conversation about the company. An interviewer likes this trait because it shows that the interviewee is taking the job opportunity seriously and is willing to go above and beyond the other candidates. Asking detailed questions and building discussion also demonstrates that you are paying attention to what the interviewer is saying. Questions should be prepared in advance, and additional impromptu comments can also make a statement.
5. Follow Up - Thank you notes should always be written within 48 hours after an interview, even if the interview did not go as well as anticipated, or if the position is no longer of interest to you. Writing a thank you note is a simple act of generosity. It is the courteous thing to do because they took the time to discuss the opportunity with you. These notes can leave a lasting impression in the interviewer’s mind. Being polite to the interviewer shows that you will likely be polite to colleagues and customers as well. This note should be a brief recollection of what was discussed during the interview, what stood out to you about the position, and an expression of gratitude for the time and consideration. Also, reiterating why you are a good candidate for the position can refresh the interviewer’s memory if they are comparing you to other candidates.

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