The old adage "Knowledge is Power" is useful to keep in mind as
you prepare for the job interview. In this context, knowledge means a number of
things: know your own capabilities and limitations, what the job you want
entails, what you can contribute to the job, and how to present yourself in the
most positive manner.
There are several types of employment interviews. Being familiar
with them can help you better prepare for your interview.
- Patterned Interview: a
structured format in which certain predetermined areas are explored using
questions which have been written in advance and that are asked of all
- Non-Directive Interview: a
flexible format which is more conversational and does not rely on questions
written in advance. The interviewer becomes more of an active listener.
- Group Interview: a panel
format in which members alternately ask questions of the applicant.
Interviews can be stressful events. These tips for the interview
may be helpful:
- Be Enthusiastic: Show your
interest in the job you are seeking and in the business. Smile. Speak
- Be Yourself: Don't put on
an act. Being yourself can help you relax during an interview and cut down on
- Be Prepared: Review your
resume/job application before the interview to have it fresh in your mind,
because it will be fresh in the mind of the person who interviews you. Carry a
completed generic application with you. This will enable you to provide
information that may be required and to complete an application form if it was
not done before the interview.
- Know the Organization: Your
knowledge of the prospective employer will contribute to the positive image you
want to create. Research the organization before the interview: talk to others
who work there; ask for information about the organization and for a job
description when the interview is set up; use the public library's reference
books on public and private organizations.
- Be Honest: Tell the
interviewer about your work skills, strengths and experience, including any
volunteer work you have done. If you haven't had a particular kind of
experience, say so, but also indicate your willingness to learn new skills. You
don't have to embellish the truth. Simply present yourself as a positive person
with skills to offer the employer.
- Look Your Best: You will
never get a second chance to make a good first impression. Dress appropriately
for the type of job for which you are applying. Looking your best will make you
feel more confident and more relaxed. It will also show the interviewer that
you are serious about the job and about yourself
Good Luck! Don't give up if
you don't get a job immediately. Keep trying. Look upon each interview as a
learning experience which can help you land the job you want.
For More Information:
Consult reference materials at your public library or from the
Government Printing Office.
Career America, U.S. Office of Personnel Management,
Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office
Job Search Guide, U.S. Department of Labor,
Employment and Training Administration, Superintendent of Documents, U.S.
Government Printing Office