The job interview can be one of the most nerve wracking experiences you’ll ever go through. Magazines and websites regularly run stories about how to answer questions, what mistakes to avoid, etc. In this month’s On the Job segment, independent career consultant Sasha King explains all you’ll need to know in order to nail the interview.
One of the most important things King mentions is for an interviewee to ask questions of the company. She calls it “auditioning the company” while they are in turn auditioning you for the job.
“The first question I usually have them ask is ‘What are your 30, 60 and 90 day goals for someone in this position?’ Why would you want to know that? It helps you, as a job seeker, to know what they expect of you in your first 90 days. But, it also sets a favorable impression with the interviewer that you plan on achieving certain things within the first 90 days, or know what the expectations are.”
Another question King recommends asking, is what qualities the company is looking for in an employee. She also recommends asking what skills are necessary to do well on the job, which may not have been listed on the job description itself.
Group interviews are becoming more common. King says not to fret, however, as even though you are being interviewed by multiple people, interviewees actually have more control over a panel. Before you enter a group interview, have examples of situations you have previously worked through on the job, and how you have strategically handled them to achieve a result.
“Because you’re interviewing with multiple people, no one person has control over the interview. So, this is where taking those ‘star’ examples, and making sure you have several of them… having those examples you can actually treat the interview like a presentation to a bunch of people.”
King says one of the most important things to do before entering an interview is read the annual report of the company. She also recommends going to websites such as GlassDoor.com, which provides salary information and reviews of what it’s like to work for the company.
She stresses being a cultural fit may be just what the company’s looking for. For some companies, it doesn’t matter if you have a Harvard or state school degree. If your personality is a cultural fit, you may just nab that second interview.