Some “Do’s” and “Don’ts” Concerning your Interview:
Plan to arrive a few minutes early. Late arrival for a job interview is never excusable. In an emergency, call the interviewer as soon as possible.
Most applications are done online and not at the interview. You want to find this out before the interview so that you can bring the information you need to fill one out if asked to. Bring copies of your resume, licenses, training, awards and your prepared list of references.
Smile, and be enthusiastic! People hire those that want the job.
Don’t smoke, vape or chew gum.
Do make eye contact with everyone that is in the interview. Don’t look around the room, out the window, or at the floor. You want to show your interest in the position.
Ask the interviewer to describe what they look for in a new hire, early in the interview. This way, you can make sure that your answers contain your experience and skills that they are most interested in hearing about.
Don’t answer questions with only “yes” or “no”. Give specific details, whenever possible without becoming too wordy. If you do not have the experience that your interviewer is asking about, try to relate it to what you have done. If you are not sure how to answer, begin with what you know and then after a few minutes, ask if this is the direction they are looking for.
Keep in mind that you alone can show your best qualities to an interviewer. Enthusiasm is the key to a successful interview. Make sure that they know why they should hire you.
Be prepared to answer typical questions like: Tell me about yourself? (Be prepared to emphasize the highlights of your work experience, accomplishments and strongest skills that got you the interview). What are you looking for in your next position? What are your strengths and your weaknesses? (When sharing a weakness or strength, show how you have solved problems that occurred and grew from the experience) What do you know about our company? Why do you like working in your field?
Don’t take anyone else with you to your interview, unless the interviewer has been made aware ahead of time. They will be able to make arrangements for a place for them to wait for you, while you are interviewing.
Never make derogatory remarks about your present or former employers. It will not help your situation. It will only leave a negative impression with the interviewer.
It is best to keep your questions to the job, and wait to ask about vacation or benefits, until they show interest in pursuing you further or they bring it up.
Stay away from giving your opinion on things, because you do not know if the interviewer feels differently. Try to keep your answers to the facts, or strengths and weaknesses on the topic you are discussing.
How to answer “what salary are you looking for?”: If you are asked directly what salary you are looking for, try to avoid quoting a specific figure, which leaves the door open for you and the employer. Answer with: “I am very interested in the opportunity. I am flexible and open to a fair offer for my skills and experience.” If they ask what you are making, answer with, ” I am currently earning $____ per year/hour. ”
Salary discussion: Money is not the only thing to consider. You should evaluate the company, the job and the work environment. A position that affords you the opportunity to work in a positive and supportive work environment, offers a reward that money cannot buy. Our job is to handle the salary negotiations before an offer is extended. We help both parties come to an agreement on a fair and acceptable compensation package, which consists of salary, bonuses, benefits and vacation.
Questions to ask:
What is important to you in hiring a person for this position? Or, What are you looking for in a candidate? (This helps you focus your answers to what they are most interested in learning about you and what is important to them)
What areas do you need help with? What problems can I help you solve?
What areas in my background would like more details on?
Is there anything that you would like clarified in my experience?
What are the prospects for growth and advancement?
Tell me why you are so enthusiastic about this company and why you came to work here?
What is the next step in your interviewing process?
What is your management style?
How would you describe a typical week/day in this position?
What are future objectives and goals of the company?
How often will my performance be reviewed?
Could you describe your company’s management style?
What is your highest priority in the next six months and how could I help with it?
How many people work in this department? Will I have an opportunity to meet some of the people that I would be working with?
What are some things you would like to see me accomplish in my first 3 months, 6 months, year?
Is this a new position? If not, why did the previous employee leave?
What is the company’s policy on providing seminars, workshops, and training, for employees to keep up their skills or acquire new ones?
What equipment/machines, computer system and software, do you use?
Closing the Interview
Make sure to emphasize that you are interested in the position before you leave the interview.
What is the next step in your interviewing process?
Then you can ask, “What can I do to help move the process along?” or “When will I hear back from you?
If I am extended a job offer, how soon would you like me to start?
Be Prepared to Answer Questions Like:
Why would you like to work for our company?
What do you see yourself doing five years from now? (or short term and long term goals)
What do you know about our company
What interests you about this position?
What two or three accomplishments have given you the most satisfaction? Why?
How do you think a friend who knows you well would describe you?
What motivates you to put forth your greatest effort?
What have you learned from your mistakes? (Answer similar to what are your weaknesses)
In what kind of work environment are you most comfortable and how do you work under pressure?
What qualities should a successful manager possess?
What two or three things are most important to you in your job?
Describe the relationship that should exist between a supervisor and those reporting to him or her?
How do you determine or evaluate success?
Why did you leave your last job? Why you left other jobs?
What is the most difficult experience you’ve ever had to deal with and how did you handle it?
Who had the greatest influence on your life? Why?
Leave a Lasting Positive Impression – Thank You Letter or email
Sending a Thank You letter or email is imperative. This is your chance to show your interest in their opportunity.
Highlight what you discussed in your interview and how you your skills match what they are looking for.
Send the Thank You letter or email, on the same day of the interview or the following day. This allows you to convey a sense of urgency/ high interest level in the position.
Thank You letter length: Half page to one page in length. Font and Size: Use a traditional font or such as Times New Roman, Arial, or Calibri. Your font size should be between 10 and 12 points. Align text to the left. Format: A Thank You letter should be single-spaced with a space between each paragraph. Use about 1″ margins and align your text to the left like most business letters. Accuracy: Be sure to edit your Thank You letter or have someone review it. Email or Mail: If you decide to mail a letter, it does make an impression to send it regular mail; if you want to have it there the same day or next morning then you should send an email. Header: Start with your name and contact information on a letter. (If this is an email rather than an actual letter, include your contact information at the end of the letter, after your signature. ) Then date your letter or email. Heading: A letter should include the employer’s contact information (name, title, company name, address, phone number, email) followed by the date. An email can just be addressed to the person without the heading. Salutation: Use his or her formal title (“Dear Mr./Ms./Dr. XYZ”) Paragraph 1: Thank the interviewer for their time. Paragraph 2: Reiterate your interest and enthusiasm in the company and position. Paragraph 3: Highlight your experiences and accomplishments. Paragraph 4: Show how this opportunity will help you reach your career goals. (optional) Paragraph 5: Ask what you can do to proceed to the next step, if that was not discussed in the interview. Close: Use a kind but formal closing, such as “Sincerely.” Signature: Your signature, handwritten, followed by your typed name. If this is an email, simply include your typed name, followed by your contact information.
Sample Thank You for the interview Letter:
Your Name (for mailed letter) Your City, State Zip Phone email
Date (start here for email letter)
Name Title Company Address City, State Zip
I would like to thank you for taking the time to interview me today for the ______________. It was great to meet you and your team, and I truly enjoyed learning about your current _____________.
Use this paragraph to talk about what you discussed in the interview that was important to the interviewer, including your skills, experience, and accomplishments.
I am very excited about this position because it will allow me to reach my goal of _______________.
I am very interested in the position. If I can provide any additional information to help move to the next step in your process, please let me know. I look forward to hearing from you soon! (or when they said they would get back to you)
Your Signature (for regular mail letter)
Typed Name Phone (not your work phone, included in email letter)
Counter Offers – Reasons not to accept one:
Your loyalty will be in question from the point you accept one.
They may pass you over in the future for promotion.
The things that they change or give you to get you to stay will likely repeat in the future. It is best to work out issues while you are still a valued employee. Resigning from your position, in order to get a raise or something else you want from your employer, is not the best way to work things out.
Resigning from your current position can be stressful, there are several things you can do to make the process go smoothly.
Resign in writing. Handing your boss a resignation letter or email, is the most effective way to avoid escalating an already uncomfortable situation. Written resignations are formal and will become part of your permanent record.
When you resign, you should give 2 weeks notice.
Resignation Letter Writing Tips
Resignation Letter Length: Keep your letter of resignation letter to one typed page.
Font and Size: Use a traditional font such as Times New Roman, Arial, or Calibri. Your font size should be between 10 and 12 points.
Format: A resignation letter should be single-spaced with a space between each paragraph. Use about 1″ margins and align your text to the left like most business letters.
Accuracy: Be sure to edit your resignation letter or have someone review it.
Email or Mail: It is always best to resign in person, and then follow up by sending a letter of resignation, or for speed send by email.
Header: Start with your name and contact information on a letter. If this is an email rather than an actual letter, include your contact information at the end of the letter, after your typed signature. Then, date your letter or email.
Heading: A letter should include the employer’s contact information (name, title, company name, address, phone number, email) followed by the date. An email can just be addressed to the person without the heading.
Salutation: Address the resignation letter to your manager. Use his or her formal title (“Dear Mr./Ms./Dr. XYZ”)
Paragraph 1: State that you are resigning and include the date on which your resignation will be effective. Check your contract to see how much notice you are required to give your manager.
Paragraph 2: If you want, you can say why you are leaving, but this is not necessary. If you do choose to say why you are leaving, do not include what you disliked about your current job. A copy of this letter will go in your employee file.
Paragraph 3: Unless you know you will be completely unavailable, it is good to say that you are willing to help with the transition period. This sections is optional. You can decide whether you want to add it or not.
Paragraph 4: Thank your manager or your employer for the opportunity to work for the company. You can also mention that you enjoyed working with your coworkers. This section is optional.
Close: Use a kind but formal closing, such as “Sincerely.”
Signature: Your signature, handwritten, followed by your typed name. If this is an email, simply include your typed name, followed by your contact information.
Sample Resignation Letter
Your Name (use heading on mailed letter) Your Address City, State Zip Your Phone: email
Date – (start here with email letter)
Jane Doe Title Company Address City, State 54321
Dear Ms. Doe,
I am writing today to notify you that I will be resigning my position as ________effective two weeks from today. My last working day will be ________________.
My wife has been promoted with her company and her new position requires us to relocate.
I have enjoyed my time here at _________ and will remember it fondly. Thank you for the opportunity and training you have provided me over the past _________ year (s).
Please, let me know how I can help with the transition and in training my replacement.
Signature on mailed letter John Doe Typed Name on mailed letter and on email (include your contact information, phone, email address, here in email letter)
Social Media:Things to consider when you are sharing information
Sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, YouTube and Pinterest are not just for connecting with friends and posting pictures of family vacations. They are the platforms for companies to learn more about you. Now companies are paying more attention to your online presence.
You may want to set privacy settings for things that you do not want made public for anyone to see. Carefully set your privacy settings to ensure different content is available only to your intended audience. The best policy is to err on the side of caution. If you are debating posting a particular picture, link or message, then you probably should not do so.