Answering the questions is not all the company is assessing about you. Here are a few reminders as you prepare for your on-site interview, that say Hire Me!
- Remember that everyone you meet at the company is potentially assessing you, so be polite and courteous to each and every person you interact with at the company.
- Make sure you have the contact information (especially email address!) for anyone who interviews you. The easiest way to get this is often to ask for a business card. It’s often most natural if you ask for the card at the beginning of the interview, when he or she is introduced to you. Simply say, “It’s great to meet you. Do you have a business card?”
- In the interview, be sure to specifically express your interest in working for the company. Don’t be too forward or aggressive, but after you’ve had a chance to learn more about the job and its requirements, it’s fine to say something like, “The more I learn about this job, and the better I get to know the company, the more I know I’d like to work here!”
- Be prepared to give a “closing statement.” If you’re given the opportunity near the end of the interview, be ready to summarize (in 90 seconds or less) why you think you’d be a good fit for the position. Bonus points if you can incorporate in some fact or tidbit that came up in the interview that particularly resonated with the interviewer. Although you want to prepare this closing statement in advance (and practice it several times), you don’t want it to sound canned or rehearsed.
- Ask if there is anything else you can provide to the interviewer to assist in the hiring decision. This could include a list of references (you, of course, have this all ready to go!), work samples, a 90-day plan (what you’d do in your first 90 days on the job), etc. Find out the best way to get this information to the interviewer, and when they want it.
- At the end of the interview, don’t be shy about asking what the next step is. You want to know if there is another round of interviews, and when it will begin. Ask if it’s okay for you to follow up with your interviewer if you haven’t heard from them. (This is especially important to request if the next step in the process hasn’t been defined, or if there is no definite timeline for additional interviews or a hiring decision.) Ask how many candidates will advance to the next round of interviews. Do they have a specific start date in mind for the position? And finally, inquire about how they’d like to be contacted for follow-up — do they prefer phone or email?
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