Besides the normal pleasantries of dressing the part, having a copy of your resume, being on time and prepared for the standard “why should I hire you?” questions…here are some interview tips that may surprise you.
- Be prepared to ask questions. I once interviewed Executive Pastry Chef Matthew Peterson from Café Boulud, Palm Beach on my SiriusXM show. He mentioned that when he takes on new people in his kitchen and they don’t ask questions in the first few hours, he tells them to go home.
- Remember, an interview is as much about them liking you as you liking them. To find out more about your employer, ask if they conduct employee satisfaction surveys and if you can see recent results.
- Take notice of further ways to connect with the interviewer. Look around and notice a picture, a poster, a painting, a screen saver or even paper-weight that you can relate to. Ask a question about it and connect with the interviewer on another level. I have a client who asked the interviewer if he was a Rangers fan after seeing a Stanley Cup picture on the wall. Being a Rangers fan himself, the interviewee immediately made a deeper connection with the interviewer.
- Find a signature piece for your interview outfit/suit. Wear something that means something to you. It could be a special pair of cufflinks (men) or an heirloom ring (women). Also where relevant, make sure to incorporate an item from the company’s line of clothing or accessories. I knew a women who interviewed at Coach and made sure she traded in her Guess bag for a Coach one for the occasion.
- Go beyond your resume. If you’re in the interview, the search engine already found all the right key words on your resume. Now is your opportunity to make what you did on that resume come alive in the conversation–make it like a movie that someone wants to watch. Be animated and excited about your story and you will create a more compelling interview.
“Make the most of yourself, for that is all there is of you.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson