Adulting 101, Part 2: The Interview

The Interview

Now that you’ve done the applying and have heard back from some companies, it’s time to prepare for the first round of interviews! This is the time where your personality can shine. A lot of companies hire for culture and obviously recognized something in you that they liked!

Before heading into the interview, you NEED to do some work. Start off with doing some research about the company. What they do, what they’ve been up to recently, what you would be doing specifically.

* Look up recent press releases published by the company. That is the best way to find out what recent events have occurred in relation to the company. When I had an interview for an internship last year, I read that they had recently been acquired so I was able to ask questions about how that acquisition would affect the department I’d be working in. If they just held an event, ask about that! A company will always appreciate that you're keeping up with them.

* Come up with a list of questions! You should not go to an interview and expect that it will be purely one sided. Here are some good questions to ask:

o What does a normal day look like for someone in this position? You want to make sure that what you would be doing falls in like with your qualifications and that you’d be happy with what a normal day looks like.

o What are the core values of your company and do you expect them to be altered in the near future? Knowing what a company values can help you figure out if you’d fit in well in the company culture and where the company thinks they’re heading.

o Ask them a question about the press release you read or an aspect of their company that would directly affect your position with them. This shows that you’ve done your work as to what the company does, operationally.

o What are some qualifications that other candidates have that I might not have? And does that concern you? This shows that you understand that you are not a perfect candidate but you are willing to learn and develop skills. It also gives you the opportunity to reinforce the skills that you do have that the company may not have picked up on.

* Eye contact! You want to show that you are attentively listening to what those interviewers are saying and that you are really interested in their company and the position they’re offering.

Attire:

It cannot hurt to be as professional as possible. Even if the companies boast about a casual culture, it is always better to be dressed to impress.

Post-Interview

Send thank you notes! This small act can keep you in the mind of those who interviewed you. If they are interviewing other candidates but receive a thank you note from you, you will be in their minds while they are talking to other candidates and can give you a little boost!