We are sitting down at the interview table, having just shaken hands, ready to start as hiring manager (me) and potential candidate (you). We are both hoping that this is the one, that you are the successful candidate.
Let’s backtrack and think about each of our preparation for this moment. Mine started weeks or maybe even months ago when I sought approval for this position. I reviewed and updated, or created, the job description at that time. I talked to HR about posting the position internally and externally. If HR was responsible for the initial interviews, I filled them in on what I was looking for in terms of traits, background and experience.
I’ve also put some thought into the dynamic of the team and what I plan to accomplish in the coming year. What weaknesses I want to shore up and strengths I want to increase through the new person. While going through the pile of resumes, I keep all of this in mind. Who might fit the bill? These go on the yes or maybe pile. The yeses will get a phone interview.
I’ve done all of this, fitted into my regular day, as I could arrange it. I’ve done my best to read each resume with a clear mind, but they tend to blur together and I am quickly looking for reasons to put each one on one of the three piles – yes, no, or maybe.
Before we get back to the two of us sitting opposite at the interview table, what did you do to prepare for this interview?
Did you just use the quick apply option on one of the job search websites and send me your standard resume that you have sent out hundreds of times? Or did you take some time to research my company, and tailor your resume to the position that I have posted by highlighting your skills that match my requirements? (Even before that, did you have someone proofread it for errors and clarity?) Have you practiced your responses to standard questions with someone who will help you to present yourself in the best light? Can you tell me examples of your work efforts clearly?
Have you taken a breath and told yourself that you will do your best?
Now we are back at the table and ready to get started. Both hoping this is the one.
Beth Anne Reed has a background in Customer Relations, Process & Project Management and a deep interest in Written Communications.
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