- Know the time and place of the interview and the interviewer’s full name and title.
- Ensure that you fully understand the job description of the position for which you are interviewing.
- Plan to be 15 minutes early in anticipation of traffic problems or other unanticipated delays.Also, know where you’re going. If possible acquaint yourself with the route. Late arrival for a job interview is never excusable.
- Dress professionally (i.e. proper business attire).
- If presented with an application, fill out neatly and completely.
- Ensure to shake the interviewer’s hand firmly.
- Speak slowly and clearly. Don’t rush the answers.
- Stress accomplishments.
- Ensure to answer every question fully and honestly.
- Don’t jump ahead or give more information than is required. Pay attention to “cutoff” cues.
- Ensure you are consistent in your answers throughout all interviews.
- Don’t answer with a simple “Yes” or “No”. Explain answers whenever possible.
- Avoid saying anything negative about present or previous employers or co-workers.
- Ask questions to show interest in the Company and the position.
- Ensure that they know you are interested in the position; never close the door on an opportunity.
- Look alert and interested at all times and look the interviewer in the eye.
- Relax, smile and have a positive attitude. Give the appearance of energy as you.
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
TRAPS: Beware, about 80% of all interviews begin with this "innocent" question. Many candidates, unprepared for the question, skewer themselves by rambling, recapping their life story, delving into ancient work history or personal matters.
Start with the present and tell why you are well qualified for the position. Remember that the key to all successful interviewing is to match your qualifications to what the interviewer is looking for. In other words you must sell what the buyer is buying. This is the single most important strategy in job hunting.
So, before you answer this or any question it's imperative that you try to uncover your interviewer' s greatest need, want, problem or goal.
To do so, make you take these two steps:
1. Do all the homework you can before the interview to uncover this person's wants and needs (not the generalized needs of the industry or company)
2. As early as you can in the interview, ask for a more complete description of what the position entails. You might say: "I have a number of accomplishments I'd like to tell you about, but I want to make the best use of our time together and talk directly to your needs. To help me do, that, could you tell me more about the most important priorities of this position? All I know is what I (heard from the recruiter, read in the classified ad, etc.)"
Then, ALWAYS follow-up with a second and possibly, third question, to draw out his needs even more. Surprisingly, it's usually this second or third question that unearths what the interviewer is most looking for.
You might ask simply, "And in addition to that?..." or, "Is there anything else you see as essential to success in this position?:
This process will not feel easy or natural at first, because it is easier simply to answer questions, but only if you uncover the employer's wants and needs will your answers make the most sense. Practice asking these key questions before giving your answers, the process will feel more natural and you will be light years ahead of the other job candidates you're competing with.
After uncovering what the employer is looking for, describe why the needs of this job bear striking parallels to tasks you've succeeded at before. Be sure to illustrate with specific examples of your responsibilities and especially your achievements, all of which are geared to present yourself as a perfect match for the needs he has just described.
Question 2What are your greatest strengths?
TRAPS:This question seems like a softball lob, but be prepared. You don't want to come across as egotistical or arrogant. Neither is this a time to be humble.
BEST ANSWER:You know that your key strategy is to first uncover your interviewer' s greatest wants and needs before you answer questions. And from Question 1, you know how to do this.
Prior to any interview, you should have a list mentally prepared of your greatest strengths. You should also have, a specific example or two, which illustrates each strength, an example chosen from your most recent and most impressive achievements.
You should, have this list of your greatest strengths and corresponding examples from your achievements so well committed to memory that you can recite them cold after being shaken awake at 2:30AM.
Then, once you uncover your interviewer' s greatest wants and needs, you can choose those achievements from your list that best match up.
As a general guideline, the 10 most desirable traits that all employers love to see in their employees are:
1. A proven track record as an achiever...especial ly if your achievements match up with the employer's greatest wants and needs.
2. Intelligence. ..management "savvy".
3. Honesty...integrity ...a decent human being.
4. Good fit with corporate culture...someone to feel comfortable with...a team player who meshes well with interviewer' s team.
5. Likeability. ..positive attitude...sense of humor.
6. Good communication skills.
7. Dedication.. .willingness to walk the extra mile to achieve excellence.
8. Definiteness of purpose...clear goals.
9. Enthusiasm.. .high level of motivation.
10. Confident... healthy.. .a leader.
Instead of confessing a weakness, describe what you like most and like least, making sure that what you like most matches up with the most important qualification for success in the position, and what you like least is not essential.
If you're not yet 100% committed to leaving your present post, don't be afraid to say so. Since you have a job, you are in a stronger position than someone who does not. But don't be coy either. State honestly what you'd be hoping to find in a new spot. Of course, as stated often before, you answer will all the stronger if you have already uncovered what this position is all about and you match your desires to it.
Never lie about having been fired. It's unethical - and too easily checked. But do try to deflect the reason from you personally. If your firing was the result of a takeover, merger, division wide layoff, etc., so much the better.
Make sure you've prepared a brief reason for leaving. Best reasons: more money, opportunity, responsibility or growth.
Describer a situation that didn't suffer because of you but from external conditions beyond your control.
4/1983 - 12/1983, Position B;
1/1984 - 8/1987, Position C;
1984 - 1987 Position C.
…a good (job title you're seeking);
…a good manager;
…an executive in serving the community;
…a leading company in our industry; etc.
Monday, August 11, 2008
--Communication begins before conversation. As the program’s authors note, studies show that some 40% of what’s communicated comes through body language and tone of voice. Both must match the message being imparted. When you tell a subordinate that a mistake he or she has made is “no big deal,” don’t roll your eyes and wince. On the phone, voice tone is paramount; never compete with the conversation by eating or allowing loud background noise as you talk.
--Name your counterpart. Nothing establishes rapport better than acknowledging others by name. But in today’s transient world, names are easy to forget or confuse. “Connect the person’s name with someone famous,” the program advises. “If you meet George, mentally connect him to George Washington.”
--Start with small talk. Chatting amiably opens the door to more substantial messages but, advises the author, gauge your counterpart’s reaction so as to not go on too long … and never chat about workplace confidences or gossip.
--Tailor your conversation to your audience. Talks with a boss, co-worker, or customer each require a different style. With bosses, pick the right time and ask honestly for what you need and what they can reasonably deliver. For colleagues, be humble, reliable, and discreet. And if customers call with problems, listen, apologize, and offer a solution. However, a natural smile when it’s appropriate, and even on the phone, applies in all cases.
--In writing, match your format to your audience. A short e-mail is fine for inviting a colleague to lunch, but use a more formal letter to ask an important customer to dinner. Also, remember that others beyond your intended recipient and far into the future may read written words. Never write what you wouldn’t want openly read.
--Meet when it makes sense to meet. Nothing irritates colleagues so much as useless meetings, the authors say. Their advice: Meet only when you need to, with only who you need, and always with a formal agenda. End the meeting by praising participants for something done previous to the meeting. That sends everyone off on a positive note.
The program goes on to address the communications aspects of negotiation, reporting bad news and resolving conflicts, all of which build on the strategies above, and all of which are evidence that good communication skills can be learned when the training program is right.
OK, take time to groan, but only a little. Shift that energy toward getting your organization geared up to comply. No matter what changes the law brings, there are some general principles and techniques to follow in dealing with them. You may want to follow this step-by-step approach:
1. To get a sense of what the new challenge is all about, ask:
Does the new law or reg apply to my organization?
When does the law or reg take effect?
What are the penalties for noncompliance?
What is the intent of the new law or reg?
What does the new law or reg require us to do?
2. Determine what changes the new law or reg will require:
What budget allocations will be necessary?
How will policies change?
What procedures need to be revised?
What existing plans need to be altered?
What departments will be affected?
What individuals will be affected?
3. Make an implementation plan for management’s approval. Include:
The name of the person in charge of implementation
Goals and outcomes
Schedule and deadlines
Milestones and intermediate steps, if it’s a complex implementation
Specific policy and procedure changes
Associated paperwork, online forms, or recordkeeping
4. Follow and complete the plan.
5. Perform dry-run testing if necessary.
Not Sure You Know All the New Rules for 2008?
In 2008, you’ll be facing challenges in the family and medical leave arena, continuing confusion with employee benefits such as health savings accounts and retirement plans, a completely redesigned I-9 immigration form, and more aggressive attempts by federal authorities to root out misclassified employees, to name but a few.
We’ll be reporting on these issues in detail in coming weeks and months, but there’s a way to get a complete briefing right now. Attend BLR’s special 90-minute audio conference, 2008 Legislative Update: The Laws, Regulations, and Court Cases Employers Need to Know about No.