Your application and/or resume were of interest to one of the employers that you hoped to land a job with and now, you have been called for that most nerve-wracking of all processes – the job interview.  A successful interview will either get you the position or you will remain on the outside looking for another place to work.  Understanding what employers want from their employees will help to give you the edge in any employment interview.

Prepare Ahead of Time

When you have submitted applications to ten or more businesses, it is easy to forget what it was that attracted you to the one that now wants an interview.  Go back and review their company, the products and services that they offer and the job description of the opening that you wished to fill.

Think about answering questions such as “what can you offer that would add to our company” or “what motivates you”.  These are open-ended questions that require some thought and being ready to answer them shows that you take the interview and the business seriously.

Modern Interview Styles Differ

A few years ago, a coach could have told you what to expect and be prepared to answer in an interview regardless of the position offered.  Today, job interviews have changed dramatically.  Large corporations are altering their company cultures. As a result, they seek candidates who are able to resolve problems and work without constant supervision.  They are looking for loyalty to the company and a willingness to be responsible for your job.

If the job you applied for involves technical skills, practice doing puzzles and solving riddles.  One famous corporation uses this methodology to find out how the candidate evaluates issues and the processes used in reaching a solution.  If you are presented with a puzzle, riddle or math game, your procedure to reach an answer may be more important than whether the answer is right or wrong.

Some employment interviews are casual instead of structured with specific questions and answers.  These interviews are conversational in tone in order to reveal your ability to communicate well with strangers and be socially suitable to their clientele. Listening and responding appropriately to comments without attempting to “one-up” the interviewer’s funny situation or bad moment stories are key to social skills in business.

Sometimes, you will be asked to meet the interviewer at lunch for these interviews.  Make sure that your manners are top notch and that you are familiar with the proper use of all silverware.  Remember to keep your elbows off the table and chew with your mouth closed.  If you are asked a question after taking a bite, motion that you need a moment and swallow as soon as you can without choking.

It is normal to be nervous when you meet the person who has the power to change your life for the better with the swipe of a pen.  Preparing ahead of time refreshes your memory about the company, helps your self-confidence level and steadies those interview nerves.



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