Being Prepared for an Interview

Interviewing for a job can be just like taking a test. You want to prepare ahead of time and do everything you can to show you’re the person for the job. One way to prepare for the test is anticipate the questions you will be asked and making sure you can answer each one.

Below are some things to consider as you prepare. Many of these may seem like common sense, but it is always good to refresh. The emphasis should be on what makes you unique, do you have qualifying skills, education, and experience, do you have valuable soft or leadership skills that will help make your employers company better. Things to be ready to cover include:

  • How long have you worked in this particular field – make sure you can describe the positions you have held and what tasks you were responsible for. What makes you unique? To the extent you were part of positive results, make sure to discuss the results and how your work contributed to that.
  • Can you explain any gaps in your work history – Employers are looking for someone that comes to work every day and can be counted on. If you have breaks in your work history, be prepared to explain them. If the gaps are not for positive reasons, explain the circumstances and what you learned from them to show you have learned and have moved past them.
  • Is there any reason you might be unable to perform the tasks at hand – You want a job you will be happy with. If there are things you can’t do, be honest up front. It may mean you don’t get this job, but in the long run it is what is best for you. Conversely, if the employer has flexibility, they may be able to work around the tasks.
  • Do you have any certifications or extra schooling in this particular field (i.e.: internships, OSHA license, apprenticeships) – these show you have some degree of experience in the field and may set you apart from other candidates. Do you focus on timeliness? If you do not have any extras and it is a field you really want to work in, consider pursuing a certification or schooling to get you started in the field.
  • If you were chosen for this position, where would you see yourself in 30, 60, and 90 days from your start date – when applying for a position, try to think long term and understand what opportunities are available to you. Thinking through where you want to be helps you see if the position you are looking at fits your goals.

An interview can be stressful but it helps to be prepared and to avoid common interview mistakes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *