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A career consulting agency providing individuals and businesses with career counseling, education information, resume writing, interviewing, job search strategies, and links to employment opportunities.

Empowering individuals to achieve their educational and career potential.

Interviewing

Some Observations About Interviewing
bullet They need you more than you need them.
bullet It's not about skills, it's about cultural fit.
bullet Be prepared, but not rehearsed.
bullet The best job hunter will get the job, not necessarily the best candidate.
bullet The quality of the questions you ask might be as important as the answers you give.
bullet If there's something you'd rather not divulge, be prepared with your answer in case the question is asked.
bullet There are illegal questions, but there are no illegal answers, except for lies. Lies will catch up with you sooner or later.

The main purpose of an interview is finding a fit. Very seldom are skills an issue. By the time the resumes have been studied, the odds are good that all interview candidates will have the ability to do or learn the job. No, the question is one of personality, confidence, desire for the position.

Here are the types of questions typically found in interviews:
bullet Theoretical Questions - Questions that place you in a hypothetical situtation. These questions are more likely to test your skill at answering questions rather than in doing a good job. Example: How would you organize your office personnel to move into a new facility?

bullet Leading Questions - Questions that hint at the answer the interviewer is seeking by the way they are phrased. Example: Working on your own doesn't bother you does it?

bullet Behavioral Questions: - Questions that seek demonstrated examples of behavior from your past experience and concentrate on job-related functions. They may include: Tell me about a time you had a problem with someone you work with, and how you handled it.

bullet Open Ended Questions - these require more than a yes/no answer. They often begin with "Tell me�", "Describe�". The classic example: Tell me about yourself.

bullet Closed-Ended Questions - used to verify or confirm information, such as: "You will be giving me some references from your previous employer, is that right?"

bullet Why Questions - reveals rationale for decisions you have made or to determine your level of motivation. Example: Why do you want to work for this company?

Commonly Asked Conventional Interview Questions
bullet Tell me about yourself.
bullet What do you know about our company
bullet What sets you apart from other candidates?
bullet Why would you like to work for this company?
bullet Why do you want to change your field of work (or leave the job you hold now)?
bullet What are your greatest accomplishments to date?
bullet What is the ideal work environment for you?
bullet How did you hear about this opportunity?
bullet Do you know anyone who works here?

Commonly Asked Behaviorial Interview Questions
bullet Tell me about a situation were you "blew it". How did you resolve that situation?
bullet Tell me about a time you experienced failure. How did you deal with that?
bullet Think of an instance when you thought outside the box and acted differently than conventional wisdom. What was the outcome?
bullet Describe how you deal with meeting deadlines. Give me some examples.
bullet What have you learned from some of the positions you have previously held?
bullet Tell me about how you've dealt with working with difficult co-workers or customers.

Negative Factors Evaluated During the Interview
bullet Lack of knowledge about the company or the position
bullet Poor personal appearance
bullet Arriving late without a good reason
bullet Overbearing, aggressive manner
bullet Inability to express oneself clearly: poor voice, diction, grammar
bullet Lack of confidence and poise, nervousness, lack of interest or enthusiasm
bullet Failure to maintain eye contact
bullet Limp handshake
bullet Inability to take constructive criticism
bullet Asks no questions about the job

Questions You Could Ask (You should already know a lot about any company you want to work for)
bullet I'm interested in knowing why the position is open.
bullet Can I see the work space?
bullet Is it possible to talk with someone who does or has done this job?
bullet What are the typical first year assignments?
bullet What type of ongoing training do you offer new employees?
bullet What do you see as the greatest challenge in this position?
bullet What opportunities exist for professional growth and development?
bullet What characteristics does a successful person have at your company?
bullet How would you describe the typical day on the job?
bullet How are employees evaluated and promoted?
bullet Do you use a mentoring system here?
bullet When can I expect to hear from you?
bullet An excellent site that gives a great pitch for asking questions and being prepared to fully participate from both sides of the table is: job-interview.net. They also have more suggestions for questions to ask, and a list of the "dumb dozen" - what not to ask.

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