Be an Interview Ace

Plan for and conduct a successful job interview


In deciding what to wear for the interview, try to dress similar to how the interviewer dresses. Not a psychic and don’t feel like breaking into your potential future employer’s closet? The next best suggestion is to dress professionally and conservatively. It is not the time to try out a new style, and dressing too well is always better than not dressing well enough.

In addition to preparing questions and answers, and conducting rehearsals, it is important that the travel plans for the interview are well thought out and planned ahead of time. Bogardus suggests arriving at the city where the interview is located the evening before. He warns that there are too many risks when traveling the day of the interview. Besides, the day of the interview shouldn’t be spent worrying about traffic or flight delays.

The day before the interview should be spent reviewing interview notes and questions, wardrobe, and directions or maps.

Maintain confidence
So after all of the hard work, the day has finally arrived. On the day of the interview the most important detail is arriving on time. Eat a light breakfast and head out early.

Bogardus swears that rehearsal is the key to being confident in an interview. “If people have rehearsed and are prepared they are a lot more confident and have the attitude that they are going to win the interview. They come across not as arrogant but as prepared and confident, and someone that you believe could do the job. I think that the biggest mistake is not taking it seriously enough, thinking that they can wing it or simply not knowing that they need to do a lot of preparation.”

It is time to be confident. You have prepared and are ready for this. The job search can be discouraging, and if this isn’t the first interview it may be even more discouraging, but still you must hold your head up high and exude the kind of confidence that makes others think they need what you have to offer.

“Not everyone has that kind of confidence that you would like to have at that point. I think a lot of it has to do with No. 1 convincing yourself that this is a job you really want, and No. 2 that you are indeed qualified to do the job,” explains Bogardus.

Upon entering the building, greet the receptionist or secretary in a friendly and respectful manner. Chances are they will be questioned later on their impression of you.

While in the interview maintain eye contact and good posture. Throughout the interview try to incorporate the previously decided three reasons why you deserve and are qualified for this job into your answers. You have hopefully prepared by thinking of potential questions you will be asked. When answering these questions take your time and do not rush through answers. It is important though that answers do not turn into rambling. It is OK to tell a story or two, but keep them focused and relevant.

Bogardus warns, “The war stories need to be relevant to the job and you can’t tell too many, or it begins to look like all you have is past experiences and no current experience. I would make any war stories as current as possible in your chronological history, and I would try to make them as relevant as possible to the job.”

Placing blame on a past employer or coworker should also be avoided in an interview. When asked about a past boss Bogardus suggests saying the following: “Every job brings new experiences. I have learned from the jobs that I thought were fun and went well, and I have probably learned just as much or more from the jobs that didn’t go as well.”

Throughout the interview it’s important that even as tough questions arise and your qualifications come into question that the urge to talk yourself up with exaggerations or lies is met with honesty. It is typical procedure that following an interview the HR department will verify information provided on the resume and in the interview. If a lie is uncovered it will more often than not result in termination or a scar on your reputation within that company. At the same time, you don’t want to be hired for a job that you are not qualified for and almost guarantee you will not succeed, leaving another blemish on a resume.

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