The Job Interview How to Maximize Your Success

By Kimberly Law, AICI CIP

To do well at the job interview you need to convince the interviewer that you not only have the right technical skills, but that you also have the right attitude, will get the job done and will fit into the company culture. This can be achieved with impression management which includes preparation, presentation and business etiquette.

Preparation
Being well prepared for the interview will help you feel more confident and appear more professional.

  • Research the company before the interview. Find out as much information as you can about the organization. The more you know about the company, the easier it will be for you to prepare. It will also show that you’re interested in the company and willing to take initiative.
  • Consider the best way to answer any questions you might be asked and think of questions to you want to ask. Most interviewers will ask if you have any questions. Asking questions will create a confident impression and demonstrates that you’re professional. Asking the right questions can also help you determine if it’s the right company and position for you.
  • Bring everything to the job interview that you might need, including your resume, letters of reference, certificates and proof of credentials. Have everything organized so you can find things quickly and easily.

Presentation
At the job interview, always present yourself in a professional manner with enthusiasm and confidence. Attitude and self-presentation plays a big role in impression management. It isn’t just what you say. How you say it, is just as important.

  • Arrive at least 15 minutes early, just in case.
  • Dress appropriately for the interview and the position you are applying for. Determine this by the company culture and the position you are applying for. Dressing more formally for the job interview will generally appear more professional and serious than business casual dress.
  • Show that you are interested and excited about the company by focusing on the organizations needs. Let them know that you will be committed to the company’s success.
  • Listen carefully to questions and answer questions honestly. Answers should be relevant and to the point but answered in a positive way. Focus on your successes. Always try to turn negatives into positives.
  • After the interview, follow up with a thank you note and a few days later with a phone call. Not everyone does it. It will help you stand out.

Your body language and the way you carry yourself can say a lot about your confidence level and the way you feel about yourself.

  • Stand and sit up straight. When speaking with the interviewer, lean forward slightly and smile when appropriate, maintain eye contact and look attentive. This will show that you are interested in what the interviewer is saying.
  • Shake hands firmly, web to web. Handshakes should never be limp or overly aggressive.

When competing for a job, a little preparation and a confident self-presentation can go a long way to give you that needed edge. They will help you appear more professional, feel more focused, come across friendly and show that you’re enthusiastic. Try these tips to make the most of your job-interview and make the best impression, next time you need to outclass the competition.

Kimberly Law, AICI CIP, owner of Personal Impact Image Management is a Certified Image Consultant, specializing in helping clients make the best impression possible, including personal appearance and etiquette. Sign up for Image Matters & receive FREE reports. Or learn more about business etiquette in our special report ‘Minding Your Manners, Everyday Matters’.

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