- Prepare, Prepare, Prepare. Do your homework on the company, website(s), and the people you are meeting with. Here are some of the locations to check:
- Social Media: Make sure to look at all their social media sites so you can get a sense of the people and culture.
- Company Website: Review their website in detail so you are very familiar with their products and/or services.
- Non-company pages: Don’t forget to check non-company sponsored pages like Glassdoor.com to you can get some feedback from people that have worked there.
- Employees: Review the background of all the people you are meeting with, as well as the leadership team. If you know who you are meeting with, you may want to send them a LinkedIn invite and a “Looking forward to meeting you” message.
- Review the job description and create your “Why me?” message. You should have at least 10 reasons why you are the right person for the job, and try to work those into your conversation and answers. These reasons should tie right back to what they are looking for in the job description.
- Prepare for the questions you don’t want them to ask. We all fear those GOTHA questions, like “so what have you been doing with your time since you have been off” or “What would others say your biggest weakness is?”. It can be uncomfortable, but if you prepare a thoughtful answer ahead of time, it could make or break your interview.
- Use numbers, be specific. Employers are looking for people know their business, so when you can, show what you know. Rather than telling them that a project you worked on helped grow sales. Tell them sales were up 15% over the previous year and we had an additional 100 new customers. It shows you know your stuff, are metrics driven, and shows off your good memory.
- Look the part. Don’t just prepare what to say, prepare your look. Shine those shoes, iron those pants, clean out the candy wrappers from your case. Employers are looking at everything, not just your resume. Always dress your best (unless they tell you to come business casual), get that haircut you have been putting off, treat yourself to a manicure. Whatever has you feeling and looking your best!
Best of luck and get that job!