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Kurs: - Business English

Modul: Job Interview - Razgovor za posao

Autor: prof. Gordana Matorkić

Naziv jedinice: Interview




"People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." - Unknown

When going on an interview, you want to present yourself to your best advantage. This is your chance to let the people interviewing you learn about your skills, knowledge, and strengths as present yourself for the first time. How do you do this?

First Impressions

Appearance counts, and is the basis for forming first impressions of a person. A neat, well-groomed appearance in an appropriate business suit comes across much better than casual clothes, or inappropriate make up and jewelry

Friendly, open people are also perceived more positively. When first meeting the employer, greet them with a firm handshake, a smile, and look them in the eyes. Listen attentively and don`t interrupt.

Be On Time

Being late does not impress interviewers, and creates the impression that you would arrive late to work. So try to get to the interview on time, or even a few minutes early. This will give you a chance to do a last minute check on your appearance in the restroom, and to fill out any paperwork.

Do Your Homework

One thing that will positively impress not only the recruiter, but also managers who may interview you, is knowledge about their company. Take the time to research the company, and be familiar with terms used in the industry that you are interviewing for. Being familiar with the company products, the services that they offer, and who their major competitors are will show that you have a real interest in the company.

Bring several copies of your resume (2 or 3) in a folder or portfolio since you may meet with several people during the interview. A cover sheet with personal references should accompany it.

Do your homework BEFORE the interview. This will make sure that you can:

Answer Their Questions Well

During an interview, you will present yourself well if you answer the questions completely and concisely (nodding or grunting "yes" and "no" to questions, or rumbling for a half hour when asked about your experience are both equally bad). Instead, well thought out answers that demonstrate your skill and strengths as they relate to the position you are interviewing for will come across much more favorably.

Be as positive as possible during the interview. Do NOT speak negatively of a former employer, even if they are the worst possible, since this will be considered a problem area with you, or a bad attitude.

Be honest, and NEVER lie or try to avoid answering. Do NOT say, "You can find that on my resume" since they are interested in YOU and how you interact with others, and your personal knowledge base. They can read the resume later. But do make sure that all information on your resume is correct, since the company will check on references, dates and job information.

Ask Intelligent Questions

After answering their questions, asking good (i.e. relevant) questions of your own will also create a good impression.

You might ask the employer to describe the job in more detail. You should also have several questions written down to refer to, based on the background research you have already done to prepare for the interview.

Ask the employer what he or she is looking for in an employee, or the three most important things they are looking for in the person they hire. Then, listen attentively to the answers. Find out why the position is open.

Your questions should focus on the job, the company, and what the employer wants or needs, not salary or benefits at this point. Do NOT ask the interviewer "Why should I work for you?" or "How much will you pay me?" since this puts them on the defensive, and creates the impression that you are only self-serving or mercenary.

Practice Makes Perfect

It is a good idea to practice an interview before actually going to one. This will give you a chance to work on answering questions, listening, and getting feedback on your body language. See if a friend or co-worker can help you by asking you both standard and "surprise" interview questions that make you think and answer spontaneously. Include some hard ones as well.


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