Raniesha in Virginia writes, “I’m finding it difficult to find a career in my field, even in the entry level. I’ve recently graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Administrative Accounting, and I have had a few interviews, but nothing has fallen through for me. So I’m wondering if you can assist me on giving me some tips on how to land the job.”
Thank you for sending the question and first let me start off by saying congratulations on landing the interview, because it’s challenging for some job seekers to even get the interview. So congratulations that’s a great accomplishment! All right, so here are 3 steps to a successful interviewing.
1. Research the company before you get the interview.
- For example, are you on social media? Are you on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook? I know Raniesha is on LinkedIn because she reached out to me that way. Let’s go a step further. Are you following the companies where you would like to work on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook? Are you a part of their LinkedIn Group? Some companies actually have LinkedIn Pages and Groups on there. So, I would suggest to definitely join their groups, listen to their conversations, see what’s going on there. That could help you prepare for the interview.
- Do you have a blog? (WordPress or Blogger) I would strongly suggest get a blog and write about your industry. You can write about articles that you read, things that people are saying on the Group, add your opinion and your professional opinion about things, and things like that. That would be great to do, even on interviews.
2. I would suggest scheduling an interview, an informational interview. Interview someone in the company where you would like to work. I would strongly suggest interviewing the Head of the Department. Ask them questions that you would really want to know about that industry. You know, how did he/she get into the industry? What would they suggest that people do that’s interested in getting into the industry? Where do he/she see the company that they’re currently at in the next five years or what challenges are they facing in that company? And things like that, because this is very important for you to know, because the issues that they’re having at that company may be the same challenges that they’re having at other companies because it’s in the same industry. So, I would definitely say setup an informational interview. If you have a blog, then you can post your interview on your blog and let that person know. “Hey, I just wrote an article about you,” and I think that’s pretty impressive.
Here are some suggestions from an article that I read 10 Job Interview Tips From A CEO Headhunter By: Russell S. Reynolds Jr. with Carol E. Curtis Published on: June 11, 2012 One of the things mentioned in the article is that you want to prepare for your interview ahead of time and you know, most likely, they’re going to ask behavioral questions. They’re going to ask questions like: why don’t you tell me a little bit about yourself? When you are asked this question, Recruiters just want to know about your career and you want to be short and straight to the point. You want to make sure that you’re, not going on and on and on. Hiring Managers just want to know the trajectory of your career and to get a sense of what you think is important and how have you performed these things. So, make sure you focus on your strengths.
Oh! One more thing. You want to focus on what interests the interviewer because if you go on a tangent about something totally different, you’ve lost the interviewer. You want to focus on what the interviewer wants to know. This just helps the recruiter make sure that you’re qualified for the position.
The other thing that it stated in the article was of course you know Recruiters are going to ask the weakness question. That is just something that they’re going to ask, and that’s okay. The key to answering this question is to be confident in the fact that your weakness doesn’t make you less of a great person to be for that position. Recruiters just want to know how are you going to handle this weakness question. What are you going to tell the recruiter? So, make sure you let the recruiter know that you’re working on that. You’re working on your weakness, and how you’re working on it.
3. Keep your interview answers short and straight to the point. Now, when I say keep it short and straight to the point, you want to use the CAR method. You want to tell the recruiter what was the C – challenge. When they ask you the question use an example from a previous job that you had. Also, you can use your internship. The A is Action. You want to tell them what action steps did you take to solve that challenge. Then, last but not least, is the R – the Results. You want to tell them what results did you give. Here’s an example of Raniesha’s C.A.R method using your internship:
- So, when they ask you a question, your challenge part would be: “During my internship last summer, I was responsible for…” Okay? So, that would be the C.
- The A, which is the Action, would be: “I designed a new promotional package to go out to the students,” and elaborate a little bit more on that.
- The R would be Results. You could say something like: “We used some of the student’s great ideas and raised attendance past the numbers from the previous year.” That’s could be your CAR method.
Now I’d like to hear from you. Click on the Comment link, and share your interview tips to get a job.
Do you have a job search question? I know you do, most of you job seekers do. Well…if you do, click on the ‘Contact Jacqui’ tab and drop your question into the form or, you can email your question to me. So I can answer it on the show!