Tuesday, September 15, 2009

How to Prepare for an Interview - Part 2 of 2

So you've done your corporate research, reviewed the company's 10K and press releases and think you know all there is to know about where you're applying. But what about you? Experts suggest you spend 5-10 hours minimum preparing for the interview familiarizing yourself with common questions and knowing all you can about yourself and your experience.

What to know about YOU?

· Your Resume

o Ensure that you understand each bullet and term listed on your resume instinctively. Do not memorize it—synthesize it into your knowledge base.

o Be able to communicate how your experience, academic training and talents listed on your resume mimic what the employer is requiring of the candidate hired for the job.

· Your Goals

o Write down your career goals – what you want and don’t want in a career. Be sure they are well defined and practice communicating them with confidence.

o Be sure your goals and the related time frames associated with completing them are realistic. Check with a trusted colleague, mentor or friend to ensure your achievement time frame is realistic. Coming across as realistic is a sign of experience and maturity, two traits you want to convey on an interview.

o Be prepared to discuss your motivation behind these goals. Employers want to see when things get tough, you will persevere in the job due to deep rooted motivators.

· Your Characteristics and Traits

o TELL A STORY: Have examples ready from your professional life to demonstrate realistically your desired work ethic, integrity and ambition and other traits desired by the target company. Telling a story works so much more effectively than simply saying “I have integrity.”

· Your Challenges

o Be prepared to handle challenging, and even downright negative, questions about you, your experience and your manager/co-workers. Here is a secret: We all have them…so those that can speak most comfortably and diplomatically about them and can demonstrate how they learned from these mistakes/situations win the game…are you going to win?

o Where have you made mistakes and learned from them?

o What decision have you made recently that did not work out as you planned?

o Tell me about working on a project with a difficult co-worker…what was the outcome?

Knowing your background, skills and talents is the best way to communicate to hiring managers how you are right for the job. Armed with strong knowledge of yourself coupled with research about the job, company and culture, you will be able to show how you are the right match for the job. This is an investment in yourself. You are worth it.

Lisa Rangel, PHR (Professional in Human Resources), is the Managing Director of Chameleon Resumes and a graduate of Cornell University. She knows first-hand what resumes hiring managers respond to and from what interviews companies make hires resulting from her 13+ years experience recruiting for international recruitment organizations and boutique search firms. Lisa can show candidates which resume formats and interview tactics she and her corporate clients have responded to when recruiting top-notch candidates. She has written resumes, prepared candidates for interviews and performed job search coaching for professionals ranging from executive to entry-level to returning to work in marketing, sales, legal, accounting, finance, administrative, hospitality, healthcare, education, public service, human resources, technology, management, scientific and public relations disciplines spanning across a multitude of industries and corporate cultures.

Lisa is a member of Society of Human Resources Management, Human Resources Association of New York, and Professional Association of Resumes Writers and Career Coaches. She has been featured on Fox Business News, Good Morning America for Keith Ferrazzi’s “Who’s Got Your Back?” book launch, HeelsConnect.com and Mom-entum Resources.

Chameleon Resumes - Reinvent Yourself!




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