Rest assured that your FirstPRO Professional Search consultant has the skills, contacts, experience and desire to help you find the new career opportunity that’s perfect for you. Our client companies expect their search assignments to be filled as quickly as possible, and they depend on FirstPRO Professional Search to meet their executive search and staffing needs. When your FirstPRO Professional Search consultant locates a position that matches your goals, skills and cultural fit, you will receive our critical data and special services.
KEYS TO A SUCCESSFUL INTERVIEW
Also, avoid negotiating your own salary objectives. Instead, persuade the management at the interview that you are the ideal candidate for their need with one of the following statements:
Finally, do not leave the interview without closing for the next step in the process. Never exit the interview while leaving any stones unturned. Don’t be afraid to ask the tough question:
If you do not ask this hard question, you may never know if any yellow flags exist. The initial interview may be your only window to uncovering these lingering concerns or hesitations on the part of the interviewer. Address these issues while face-to-face. Otherwise, you may lose the opportunity for the second interview.
THE SELF-EVALUATION PROCESS
Before engaging in the search for an even stronger position than the one you currently enjoy, conduct an objective self-evaluation. This is vital in making the most effective presentation possible during your first interview. Beyond needing your professional skills, companies have differing corporate cultures and look for employees with personality types that fit best.
Next, make a list of your strengths and skills. After studying it carefully you will feel at ease in describing both the experience you bring and the contribution you will make to the organization. This attribute list is also a powerful tool in helping you to write your resume.
ADVANCED INTERVIEW PREPARATION SKILLS
Once your FirstPRO Professional Search Consultant schedules an interview for you with a prospective employer, it is critical you be well prepared. Extensive preparation instills superior confidence, elevating your ability to conduct an impressive interview, and to receive an offer.
This brings you back to the strategy of “Selling Yourself.” You may have mastered the skills in your chosen profession, however, in a competitive situation, your interview style is paramount. More often than not, the job offer is extended to the candidate with the stronger interviewing skills.
RESEARCH THE FACTS
By thoroughly analyzing the company, you will be better prepared for a more in-depth interview. Read financial statements, recent news releases and recognize historical economic trends for both the company and industry. Know the nature of their business, office locations, their divisions and number of employees. Learn about their competitors, study their corporate leadership (you may find a name you know from a prior experience) and learn as much as you can about their corporate philosophy.
If the company is publicly traded, useful information is readily available. Check online for a Dun & Bradstreet listing or a Moody’s summary. Also, Hoover’s, Yahoo Finance and other public databases contain valuable information. Most importantly, read the company’s website. Try dropping their name into one of your favorite search engines and see what pops up. These resources will provide comprehensive background information that will be invaluable to you in the interview process.
Interviewing managers expect for you to be familiar with who they are and what they do. Be conversant about their industry.
Make a list of 10 specific questions to ask during the interview. Remember, the interview should be an exchange of information between you and the interviewer. Be prepared to answer and ask pertinent questions. Practice these responses. Through this interrogatory process, you will discover whether the position is right for you.
Some probing questions could include:
THE RIGHT ANSWERS
During your interview, you will likely be asked a wide variety of questions. Be prepared for some surprises and, maybe, some curve balls.
Anticipate the following:
If your resume reflects a lot of “job-hopping,” be prepared to answer questions about this. Remember that a positive explanation is both plausible and appropriate. Perhaps a prior employer relocated or went out of business. If you were asked to relocate and stay on, this is worth mentioning. Try to stress the beneficial aspects of each move but be careful not to justify short tenure as a “better opportunity, higher salary or shorter commute.” Employers do not want to be next on your list of brief stays for any reason. Keep the focus on seizing an opportunity, without appearing to lack loyalty and dedication. This can be indeed tough to balance, but it can be done and we can show you how.
You may be asked about your “worst” position or supervisor. Phrase your answer carefully. For instance, if a previous manager tended not to follow through or delegate well, you should emphasize that you learned to get the information you needed to accomplish the task for yourself.
You may also be asked about your ability to deal with stress and conflict.
Try using this statement:
When it comes to interviewing, the fewer negatives the better. If you have had an unpleasant manager in the past, or the company’s work environment was especially difficult, it is always best left unsaid or neutralized.
Once your FirstPRO Professional Search consultant has secured you an interview, it’s up to you to sell yourself to the prospective employer. As a result of your diligent preparation and rehearsal, you should feel totally confident and prepared.
The following are just a few things to keep in mind before and during the interview:
If you’re not offered the position at the interview, be realistic. Frequently, other key people must be consulted before the offer is extended. The hiring official may also want to discuss your candidacy further with your FirstPRO consultant. Other candidates may be scheduled for interviews, and the hiring official may want to complete that process before making a decision.
After your interview, follow up immediately with an email or letters to the interviewer (or interviewers). Whether you have been offered the position or are still under consideration, this serves to strengthen your position in terms of professionalism.
Also allow us to discuss your approach and content BEFORE sending as we oftentimes have the advantage of prior dealings with this manager. We know what they look for in this regard.
The letter should thank the company for the opportunity to interview and emphasize your enthusiasm for the position. Include any thoughts about the position’s responsibilities and what additional contributions you can make to the organization that may not have been discussed in the interview. Close your correspondence by stating that you look forward to further discussion about the opportunity. Get your letter in the mail the same day or the day following your interview.
If a second interview was mentioned, indicate how pleased you are to schedule that meeting and that you will review your calendar with your search consultant.
Immediately following the interview, call your FirstPRO Professional Search consultant to provide comprehensive feedback on how the interview went. This will give your consultant an accurate recap to help plan a follow-up approach with the hiring manager.
Your consultant will then coordinate the hiring process by arranging any subsequent interviews, salary negotiation and relocation requirements, establishing a starting date, and resolving any open points in terms of questions on either side of the process. Before the “marriage” takes place, we will stay in the middle of these discussions so that neither side has any negative feelings associated with negotiations. This makes for a much better “honeymoon.”
In the end, these strategies can be your key to a more successful and satisfying professional future.
Additional Interviewing Tips: