How To Come Out From A Job Interview Like Rudy

1. Read the job description

When the hiring manager posts a job, she probably spent at least a couple of hours writing the description, and sometimes a lot longer. Memorize the requirements and map your past experience and jobs in the interview to the exact criteria they posted for. Sounds obvious but it’s overlooked by almost every single candidate.

2. Check LinkedIn and the web

Make sure you know the name(s) of your interviewer(s) before you get there and do some homework on the Internet. Use the information you learn to spark conversation. Don’t be creepy (hey I saw your profile on plenty of fish)! If you are using LinkedIn chances are you know someone who knows the interviewer (or know someone who knows someone who knows the interviewer) so ask around before you walk in the door in case there is a friendly connection.

3. Ask your questions first

Your interviewer is not as experienced or as intimidating as you think. They might be as nervous as you. Put yourself in the front seat by asking questions they should answer (without being pushy) like: “How is the company doing?”, “What are the company’s challenges?” or “Why do you enjoy working here?”. You are showing interest and you can use their answers to improve your answers to the questions coming at you next. Save your questions about holidays and happy hours until you’ve got the job offer.

4. Take notes

You probably have the world’s best memory so don’t forget this tip. Taking notes isn’t necessarily about having to look up what you learned later - having a notepad helps you focus on the most important things (jot down at least 1 every 5 minutes). It shows the interviewer you are serious about the job and the points you make might even come in handy for answers later on. Save the doodling for the bus ride home.

5. Turn your cell phone off

It might almost but not really kill you but leave the phone in your bag and turn it off completely. Any kind of buzz from the phone and you will no doubt check if it’s one of those “emergencies” we have so often. No one is going to stop you from checking if your child is being trampled by a herd of buffalo, but take your chances that it won’t happen. Don’t be tempted to look at your own phone even when they look at theirs, and don’t be offended when they do. If you have no choice (boyfriend is finding out if he got the part of Teen Angel in the community theater’s production of Grease) explain it upfront.

6. Follow up with email

As easy as text messages are to send try to resist sending one as you drive away. You’ll probably say something stupid and you might kill someone. Most people are going to find it awkward receiving a message from someone they just left five minutes ago and may misinterpret it. Instead muster the strength to type more than 160 characters under a simple subject line like “Thank you.” Reinforce the 2 things that make you great for the job and make it clear how they can get a hold of you. Don’t try to explain away blundered questions - chances are it wasn’t nearly as bad as you thought it was.

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