5 Ways to Prep For Your Next Interview
Academics? Membership? General financial livelihood? If your life is intertwined with any of these future situations, they are all points in life where you could be faced with an interview of one sort or another. Sometimes it's quick, a mere informality, but that doesn't mean that if you show up late or ill-prepared it will be okay with the institution or business you are pitching yourself to. Whether you're an introvert of sorts or not, sooner or later you will be participating in this classic, polite conversation where you have to pitch yourself like a brand new novel to a critical publisher. No matter what situation you're facing, here are some key things to remember:
1.Be on time, but NOT too early - obviously, you know you need to arrive at least a few minutes before your appointment, but ask ahead to see if there is paperwork that needs to be filled out ahead of time, and make room for it. This shows forethought and good planning. However, if you show up more than 20 minutes early, that is a bit inconsiderate. Many times your interviewer could have earlier candidates right ahead of you, or have their own daily meetings to deal with. Having to worry about having you there before they planned to can sometimes be an inconvenience.
2.Research! - know the history (and some interesting facts) of the school or business to which you are applying. Having some info to bring up in the conversation and showing genuine interest is a point on your side and makes the interviewer see you are a person that cares about showing up with their ducks in a row. This is invaluable in professional and academic circles.
3.Memorize your resume - please. Invariably, you will have an interviewer who's cousin works at that one place that one time and "do they still work with fundraiser XYZ?", you have to be ready to touch on any point you list, so even if it is fluff make sure you have a thing or two to say about it.
4.Practice - with a friend or in front of a mirror, let them interview you. Even a friend or classmate that is not taking it at all seriously can be great practice because you can turn a joke question into a serious answer and be prepared for anything.
5.Ask questions - always. About the company/school, it's work and projects, what it is like working there. Whether you pepper them in through the body of the interview or you save them for the end where during the wrap-up they will say "Great. Do you have any questions for us about the program?" - the answer is always "Yes..."