Have a Holly, Jolly Job Interview

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You’ve Got The Job Interview, Now What?

When it comes to landing the perfect seasonal position, there are a ton of things that can go wrong, which is why it’s important to nail that interview. It’s easy to not take seasonal employment seriously, but people are trying to run a business and the Christmas Season is typically when they rake in the most money, which makes their business thrive. Your potential employer is very concerned about finding the best fit to fill in the seasonal help. Landing an interview takes work. Once you’ve earned that interview, you don’t want to mess it up. Demonstrate that you’re right for the position and if your employer is impressed, you might find yourself with a reliable job in the New Year. Here are eight tips to help you make the best impression so you hear, “You’re Hired.”

Anticipate interview questions and prepare answers.

There are five groups of questions you should consider for the interview: your background; familiarity with the field/industry; your functionality and competency for key aspects of the job; your style and personality; and how you see your future. It’s helpful to think about questions the hiring manager might ask and prepare how you could respond.

Prepare questions for the employer.

Good questions indicate to hiring managers that you know what you’re talking about. Consider questions about the character of the company; the history, nature and future prospect of the open position; and the department.

Conduct practice interviews.

The more you do something, the easier it gets, and practice runs will not only help your interview performance but also help you consider the content or substance of the discussion further. Conduct mock interviews with someone you trust. And when you get to the interview, remember to be yourself and don’t be afraid to show your personality. Companies hire real people, not robots.

Prepare to answer the toughest interview questions.

One of the hardest questions to answer is “What’s your biggest weakness?” For interviewers, how you answer this offers insight into your level of self-awareness; how you handle obstacles; and how much you know about the position.

Practice watching the hiring manager’s nonverbal cues for important clues.

People say plenty while not verbally saying anything. Facial expression, eye contact, posture and gestures tend to work together for an overall impression. What are these cues telling you? The answer could help you overcome challenging moments in the interview.

Learn to close the interview with style.

You can do just about everything right and miss a key point: Don’t forget to ask the hiring manager about the next step in the interview process! When friends ask whether or not you got the job, how would you know what to say if an interviewer doesn’t tell you what’s next and you never ask?

Ensure all documents are ready for the interview.

Preparedness says so much in an interview. It’s better to have documents and not need them than vice versa. Have multiple copies of your resume and reference list. Recommendation letters may not be required, but they’re good “leave behind” documents. Other items that will either be necessary or useful include the job description, portfolio of your work, paper and pen.

Dress for positive impact.

The dot-com era ushered in a more casual approach, but the recession brought back a more “dress for success” style. Dress appropriately for the position and also the geography. For example, a mini skirt and tank top in December will make you look out of place and feel uncomfortable. Match your attire with the image of the company.

You may feel like these tips are more important for someone seeking their first interview, or a seasoned employee looking to climb the corporate ladder. But, if you begin learning these interview skills now, then you’ll be master them when it’s time to knock on the door of Corporate America.

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