I have worked as an Human Resources Professional for five years at a Nursing Company in the state of Florida. In my position I see all walks of life in search of work opportunities with my company. So today, after several "interesting" interviews, I would like to share some tips on how to succeed in an interview!
- Be Punctual! No, that doesn't mean you have to be thirty minutes early (unless requested). I recommend 10-15min. prior to interview start time.
- Be Prepared! Nine times out of ten there was a list of required documents to bring with you and if there wasn't, at the very least, be proactive and make sure that your main form of identification on hand for filing purposes and any certifications that would coincide with the job you are interviewing for. Also, dress appropriate for the position you have applied for... If you are unsure, ask and business casual is always better than street clothes. Make a great first impression!
- Don't bring people along for the interview! I don't understand the concept of bringing your children, significant other, or anyone else along on your interview. No, they cannot interview without an appointment and I would prefer not to have people sitting or causing commotion in our lobby area if not needed. I understand, sometimes it cannot be helped but please take note that it is unprofessional to have someone tag along with you. Have a valid reason if you decide to do this because it may raise question in the interviewers mind.
- Know the position you are interviewing for! Take the initiative to learn about the position you've applied for. Know why you will be a good fit for this position and think about examples of those reasons. Also, know the company a bit so you know why you wish to work for that company.
- Body language speaks volume! You body language is key and helps employers interpret your attitude. Sit up straight and plant your feet on the floor to show confidence. Don't try and appear relaxed because that can in turn be interpreted as a lack of respect or interest. Make eye contact and maintain and open posture. Don't underestimate the power of a smile either.
- Wrapping it up! After the interview ends, reiterate your interest in the position (if sincere). Always remember to thank the interviewer for spending the time with you. If there is a call back waiting time, you may want to ask about the time frame. Shake hands and remember to smile.
- Post interview game! This will definitely get you noticed. Write and mail (snail mail) a thank you note to the person who interviewed you within 24-48 hours of the interview. E-mails are okay but a hand written note is much more personable and shows that you are well mannered. You may follow up with the HR Department, once the time frame begins has passed, for a status update. Try not to be too pushy because that can show future behaviors at the company if you are hired.
People skills all in all are important during interviews. Once a person takes a liking to you they will begin to "pull" for you to do well, whether they realize it or not. Listen to the questions asked and give examples when you are able to. I hope these tips help and I wish you all the best of luck on your future professional endeavors!