Ten Tips to a Successful Interview

Congratulations! You have secured an interview. But now what? Interviews are tricky, and with practice, they become natural. However, sometimes a bit of advice can go a long way. Here are the top ten tips that you can use to perfect your interviewing skills.

1. Do your homework: Be sure to research the company, the position, and the interviewer (if you know who that person will be). The more you know going in, the better your answers to the interview questions will be. When the interviewer talks to you, she should believe that you are interviewing for your dream job. Doing research shows that you are interested, proactive, a hard worker, and reliable! Doing research is the first step to making a good first impression.

2. Network: Get your name out there! Talk to people in the field and ask them for advice. People love talking about themselves. Not only will you make a friend in your field of interest, but you will also gain advice that you can carry with you throughout your career.

3. Dress to impress: Unless you are specifically told to wear something other than business attire, WEAR BUSINESS ATTIRE. It is better to be over-dressed and professional than under-dressed. Invest in one nice suit. It is a worth-while investment. When your outfit is put together (complete with a smile), it shows the interviewer that you personally are put together.

4. To be early is to be on time: If you are going to be late, you might as well not show up at all. Be early. If your interview is at 10am, aim to be there by 9:30am. The best people will practice their route to the office the day before! Punctuality indicates that you are trustworthy. Trust me.

5. Know your resume: You wrote your resume. You should know it like the back of your hand. Memorize your resume, and be able to run through it in less than a minute. If the interviewer asks a question about something on your resume, be ready to give details and examples. You do not want to seem like you lied on your resume (which leads me to my next point).

6. BE HONEST: I cannot stress this enough. If you lie, they will find out and you will not get the job. "Everyone lies on their resume" is a lie that people who are

deceptive with their resume say to feel better about their decision. It is crucial to be yourself. You will be working with these people; you do not want to start off your relationship poorly! Just tell the truth.

7. R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Be respectful! This interviewer is taking the time out of their day to talk to you. It seems self explanatory, but say "please" and "thank you". A CEO of a major American company once told me that the worst interview he ever conducted was when the man being interviewed took his cell phone out and put it on the table next to him. Respect is incredibly important.

8. Be a friend: You don't need to leave the office with a secret handshake, but you should leave the interviewer feeling as if you are someone they would like to spend time with. If you're nervous, take a deep breath and just be yourself. They are interviewing you to see if you are qualified professionally and personally to join their company.

9. Ask questions: While they are interviewing you, you are also evaluating the company. You need to decide if that company is a place where you can see yourself every day for five days out of the week. If you have a question, be sure to ask! Asking questions also shows interest. You may be interviewing with multiple companies, but make sure this interviewer believes that they are your first choice. Ultimately, when the interviewer asks "do you have any questions for me?", have a question or two ready to go.

10. Practice, practice, practice: Be ready to answer basic questions. You will likely always be asked to discuss your strengths, your weaknesses, why you want to work for the company, and how you see yourself fitting into the company culture. Make sure you have these answers ready. You don't need to sound too scripted, but you should not seem caught off guard. Make them think that you have been there before.

I cannot guarantee that these ten tips will land you your dream job, but they will take you one step closer. Follow the steps and take a deep breath. You are going to shine at that interview!

By: Allie Weltman