General Tips

  • Think in terms of how you can satisfy the organization's needs. Do your homework and be prepared.
  • Read about the organization. Study the literature in the Career Library.
  • Be familiar with literature on similar or comparable organizations. In other words, know the industry or field, so that you are able to compare companies.
  • Know what position you are interviewing for.
  • Know what is important to you, and be aware of your your skills and strong points. Be prepared to show how you will be an asset to the organization because of those interests and skills.
  • Be prepared for all types of interview questions and see examples below. Some interviewers will use the open-ended, "Tell me about yourself," and lean back to listen to your response.
  • You can prepare for this kind of question ahead of time by sitting down and writing a short autobiography. What have you done that you really enjoyed? What skills did you learn from your education, work and extracurricular activities? Which of these skills are most valuable to you personally, professionally, and academically? Use your imagination and write down even those things you have done which may not seem important to you, but may be of interest to an employer. Be prepared to "Tell your Story."
  • Research the employer in advance of the interview. Ask intelligent, thoughtful questions and show genuine interest in the company. Try to assess the interviewer's sincerity and enthusiasm about the organization. Ask questions regarding your own requirements in a job such as organizational structure, diversity of assignments, access to other professionals, opportunity for professional development, extent of responsibility, independence vs. close supervision, and any other job-related areas that concern you.
  • Concise, precise, succinct responses attract interview points. Interviewer's questions are asked not only to get answers, but also to learn how efficiently you handle data. Interviewers are unimpressed with vague or long-winded replies to questions.
  • Interviewers want to be assured that you are goal-oriented and expect you to be able to discuss both your short and long-term goals. Listen during the interview to decide if your goals match up with company direction.
  • "Do you have any questions about our company?" That question often strikes fear into the applicant and results in too many low-priority questions. Ask questions that touch on career growth, supervision, performance evaluation, professional development, and job responsibilities. Also, ask about new company projects or initiations.
  • Separate yourself from other candidates by being clear on your passion for the position and why you would be an ideal "fit" for the role. Understand what is expected of you on the job, and how you could add value to that particular department's mission.

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