T Nation

Interviewing Techniques

So I just finished my Phone interview with the Company that I REALLY REALLY want to work for. And I should be getting a phone call to set up in person interview this week.

What are some tips you guys can give? This will be for intern position but I’m hoping I can lead it into fulltime. Regardless I want this job because the company is a big player in this industry, so having it on my resume even an internship will be worth it IMO.

Congrats on the interview!
One thing I like to do is follow up with a letter to the company.
Send them a letter thanking them for giving you the opportunity to interview with them and for considering you for the position and all that.
This is a nice personal touch IMO.
Other interview tips are to be prepared, be prepared and, you guessed it, be prepared!
Research the company and know the things you would like to say.
Don’t script your interview but having bullet points in front of you is helpful.

Have a couple of good questions regarding the future of their products or services and what direction they want t take as a company ready when he asks you “So, any questions?”.

“When can I start” isn’t really what they are looking for.

Jerk off before you go.

[quote]DBCooper wrote:
Jerk off before you go.[/quote]

Not sure if srs.

Well I guess it make sense, I do the same thing for dates, or if I go out.

BE CONFIDENT. Of course don’t walk in thinking it’s in the bag, but be prepared and dress appropriately. If I could look back at all the interviews I have had I wish i could tell myself to have some confidence.

Don’t oversell yourself. Be sure not to talk too much.

[quote]DBCooper wrote:
Jerk off before you go.[/quote]

THIS.

Back when I had to earn my public speaking credit in school, halfway through the semester I learned that jerking off before giving a speech was the best way to reduce performance anxiety. Also, anxiolytical nootropics like L-theanine (!!!), phosphatidylserine, inositol, bacopa monneri, etc will all help with the calm, cool, and collected thing.

Skyz, thanks for that tip! That’s probably the best interview tip I’ve heard thus far.

[quote]rrjc5488 wrote:

[quote]DBCooper wrote:
Jerk off before you go.[/quote]

THIS.

Back when I had to earn my public speaking credit in school, halfway through the semester I learned that jerking off before giving a speech was the best way to reduce performance anxiety. Also, anxiolytical nootropics like L-theanine (!!!), phosphatidylserine, inositol, bacopa monneri, etc will all help with the calm, cool, and collected thing.

Skyz, thanks for that tip! That’s probably the best interview tip I’ve heard thus far.[/quote]

A friend of mine turned me on to that one. He used to manage banks and would interview a lot of people at all different levels of education and placement. Most of them misinterpret that question to mean that the interview is closing up, when really it is supposed to be the start of another conversation about the role you can play in the future of the company.

I used it as such on my last interview and knocked it out of the park.

[quote]optheta wrote:

[quote]DBCooper wrote:
Jerk off before you go.[/quote]

Not sure if srs.

Well I guess it make sense, I do the same thing for dates, or if I go out.[/quote]

I am deadly serious.

[quote]optheta wrote:
Regardless I want this job because
[/quote]

Here is your first problem, and it continues into the rest of this statement.

If you want this to turn into full time you have to thing of it in that way. You aren’t looking for a job, that is mistake #1. You are looking for a career. Once you think of it this way, many things start to change, and many more questions open up on your end.

What stage is the company in? Growth? Maturity? Decline?
What does the future hold for the company?
What is my path to management, upper management, partner?
What is my role in year 1? Year 3? Year 5?
What are the expectations of a first year staff? Second? Fifth?
What opportunities for more responsibility are available in the department I would be hired in?
How big is the team I will be part of?
What are the company’s policies regarding advancement? From within, or outside hire?

Jobs are things you do while in your position once hired. You are interviewing for a career. Remove the whole “resume builder” thoughts from your mind, because unless you are a good liar, good HR personnel can smell that from a mile away.

[quote]DBCooper wrote:
Jerk off before you go.[/quote]

For posts like this, DB, I love you. Literally lolling.

Seriously now, as an employer, the best possible thing you can do is to KNOW EVERYTHING about the company you are trying to work for, CARE ABOUT that company and DEMONSTRATE THIS by first talking about the company, and ONLY afterward talking about yourself and how you possess a particular skill set and the burning desire to apply that skill set to helping that company better realize its mission.

DO NOT talk about your prior experience unless it involves a very specific, uncommon talent or ability that very few others possess. For the most part, you are often competing with a lot of other people with better skills or more experience than you. Thing is, people usually ARE NOT hired for their skills, but for how well they sell themselves. I have literally turned down someone with a law degree in favor of someone (discussed below) who had hardly any experience but turned out to be my ideal hire.

Law degree guy looked amazing based upon experience and ability alone (he was practicing Japanese law, IN Japan, as an American 10 years younger than I am). But I could tell, as “good” as he might have been, he was not going to be good for our school because the entire vibe was me me me.

Ultimately, I made the best hire of my life; a one in a million employee whom I hope will one day be my partner. He beat out literally 50 other candidates including law degree guy because he spent his entire cover letter (a full A4 page) and then interview talking about MY company and how he was impressed with our philosophy and what we were doing for our community.

If you really care, and can demonstrate this, and you are not just blowing smoke up their ass about it, you’ll exponentially increase your chances of getting hired.

[quote]SkyzykS wrote:
Have a couple of good questions regarding the future of their products or services and what direction they want t take as a company ready when he asks you “So, any questions?”.

“When can I start” isn’t really what they are looking for.
[/quote]

Yes.

Extremely good advice.

[quote]Smashingweights wrote:
Congrats on the interview!
One thing I like to do is follow up with a letter to the company.
Send them a letter thanking them for giving you the opportunity to interview with them and for considering you for the position and all that.
This is a nice personal touch IMO.
Other interview tips are to be prepared, be prepared and, you guessed it, be prepared!
Research the company and know the things you would like to say.
Don’t script your interview but having bullet points in front of you is helpful.
[/quote]

Having research on hand about the company along with questions about that’s company’s goals and future, as Skyz suggested, will demonstrate that you are someone who does their homework, takes things seriously, and is serious about his commitment to the company’s growth.

[quote]Smashingweights wrote:
Congrats on the interview!
One thing I like to do is follow up with a letter to the company.
Send them a letter thanking them for giving you the opportunity to interview with them and for considering you for the position and all that.
This is a nice personal touch IMO.
Other interview tips are to be prepared, be prepared and, you guessed it, be prepared!
Research the company and know the things you would like to say.
Don’t script your interview but having bullet points in front of you is helpful.
[/quote]

Awesome tips

If it helps the job entails Data Analytics/VBA coding in Excel/MySQL

So I have a question, i had the phone interview Friday and now I want to to do a follow up email with the guy just thanking him and that I look forward to doing an in person interview. Problem is I don’t have his email, if I were to call the HR person that scheduled the meeting and ask him for the email and just tell him that I wanted to send an email to the interview thanking him. Would that be too soon, pushy?

The person interviewing did ask me what dates I would be available to come in and I told him during the interview. I’m just worried like Cortes said there are probably people with better resumes applying so I really want to do my best to give myself an edge.

[quote]countingbeans wrote:

[quote]optheta wrote:
Regardless I want this job because
[/quote]

Here is your first problem, and it continues into the rest of this statement.

If you want this to turn into full time you have to thing of it in that way. You aren’t looking for a job, that is mistake #1. You are looking for a career. Once you think of it this way, many things start to change, and many more questions open up on your end.

What stage is the company in? Growth? Maturity? Decline?
What does the future hold for the company?
What is my path to management, upper management, partner?
What is my role in year 1? Year 3? Year 5?
What are the expectations of a first year staff? Second? Fifth?
What opportunities for more responsibility are available in the department I would be hired in?
How big is the team I will be part of?
What are the company’s policies regarding advancement? From within, or outside hire?

Jobs are things you do while in your position once hired. You are interviewing for a career. Remove the whole “resume builder” thoughts from your mind, because unless you are a good liar, good HR personnel can smell that from a mile away. [/quote]

You know Im worried that discussing my ability to from intern to full time will possibly take me out of running. Because it looks as though it is primarily just an internship but I’m hoping I can segway it into full time by kicking ass while I’m there.

[quote]Smashingweights wrote:
Congrats on the interview!
One thing I like to do is follow up with a letter to the company.
Send them a letter thanking them for giving you the opportunity to interview with them and for considering you for the position and all that.
This is a nice personal touch IMO.
Other interview tips are to be prepared, be prepared and, you guessed it, be prepared!
Research the company and know the things you would like to say.
Don’t script your interview but having bullet points in front of you is helpful.
[/quote]

Follow up letter is OK, but is pretty low on the list of things considered important. Where I work, by the time you send out the thank you email, the decision has been made.

Here are some tips that most of us where I work look for:

  • Enthusiasm. Can’t be stressed enough. If you are anxious/excited to learn, and can show it, it goes a long way.
  • Humility. Everyone knows you’re right out of school. They’re not expecting you to know everything. That’s why they’re going to hire you cheap; they can use the internship to see if you’re a good fit and you are bright. If you have all the answers all the time, you’re not listening.
  • Congeniality. Don’t be a douche. No one will put that as a reason to not hire, but I’d wager that makes up a large portion of disqualified applicants. Candidates complain that personality shouldn’t matter, but these are people you’re going to spend 8 hours/day for years with.

One candidate came in with a list of things she would have improved upon on our company website, as well as how she would have laid it out and even spelling errors. She stood out in a sea of mediocre technical skill and was very strongly considered.

Another candidate was very mediocre all around but was hired for her hotness (no one brought it up, and it was for an internship anyway). This is another way to go if you can swing it.