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Interview Skills

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Agenda
Introduction. What type will the interview be ? What to prepare ? What should you wear ? Answering difficult interview questions. Worst Case Scenarios. Ways to rescue a dying interview. Follow-Up.

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Agenda

How to Get your Target Job!!!


Relevant Skills Organized Job Search

Target Job

Prepare for the Interview


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Attitude

Introduction

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Introduction

Got The Job

Your resume has put you at the first stage

It is your chance to do yourself a favor

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Introduction

LAND TO THE POSITION YOU ARE LOOKING FOR

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Introduction

Interview
What is an interview ? What can the process create ?

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Introduction

What is an Interview
Two way process. Argumentative issue. Gather and clarify information. The most important stage of job search.

What can the process create?


Simply, A decision to be hired or not ! Hiring decisions are made on emotion and justified with logic You like things first and then justifies it. Get the employer to like u
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Introduction

The Art Of Interviewing


Can you sell / Market yourself? Can you impress? It is not just answering questions.

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Introduction

Market / Sell Yourself


Suppose you are a product Know your product (SWOT) Know your customers needs Demonstrate how you can satisfy him

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Introduction

Sections of Interviews Preparation The Big Day Follow-up


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Preparation

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Follow Up

Be Prepared for the Journey


Once you have the Interview secured Dont walk-in without keys PREPARATION IS THE KEY!

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Preparation

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Ask your Self

What is your goal?

Which environment? Which Schedule?

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Example
Objective Prepare/ Rehearse to impress

Team environment

Long term goals


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Know the Type


1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Telephone screening. Screening. Second or third interview Headhunting. One to one interview. Group interviews. Panel Interviews. Free Form / Un-structured. Psychometrics. Presentations.
Preparation

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Big Day

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Panel Interview
Two or three interviewers ask set of questions for every candidate. The atmosphere can be formal. STAR.
Circumstances

S-T
What and How Done

A
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Effect of Action

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Free Form
A loosely- framed, few topics Could be away from normal working hours. Unstructured, informal and can be perceived as a chat. It can be difficult to sell yourself without being prompted by relevant questions.

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Presentation
Prepare well Practice

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Preparation

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Psychometric
You will be asked a series of questions to: Discover self-observation. Reactions ? Psychometric tests are becoming popular. Mainly supporting role.

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Answers to prepare
Why can you do the job?
Situational questioning. Behavioral questioning.

Whats your great weakness? Why you change jobs so frequently? What is your biggest mistake in career? How would your supervisor / friends describe you? Tell me a story? Tell me a joke? What can you offer that others dont? What is your major accomplishments?
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Answers to prepare
1- Situational Questioning: You might be asked how you would cope in a hypothetical situation.
For example, how you have dealt with a difficult user at the issue desk in your current job.

2- Behavioral Questioning: You may be asked about your behavior or reaction to a certain situation..
For example, how would you deal with a difficult user at the issue desk ?

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Preparation

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Expectations
General information about the position. Articulate your qualifications and interests. Understand the nature of the organization

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The Matching Process / Self Assessment

Technical skills that match this job. Will your personality match your job?

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R U the right one ?


Prepare your matching sheet Excellent interpersonal skills
Ran team of 3 people for 18 months.

Experience of handling mgmt accounts


Four years of relevant experience

How will your teamwork and leadership spirit help you match with the job?
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Team Work
Are you more comfortable working as a part of a team or individually ?
Be honest If you are a person who would rather work alone, please say it. What is the job necessitates? If you have not stated this, you may have the shock of being one of the team and you may hate your job.

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Analyze your strengths / weakness


Strengths:
Think about how you have used your strongest skills. Keep all your achievements at your fingertips
For example, you may have decided to rearrange the filing system to help your colleagues to find documents more easily.

State the skill & example it. State the skill & show how you use it. Dont just say it, show it.

Weaknesses:
Be ready to explain any inconsistencies or breaks in your career. Think creatively and remember transferable skills.

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Dress For Success


Professional business wear is a must in most of the organizations It is a part of the first impression taken about the candidate There is no perfect dressing but try to select what suits you

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Dress for Success


Dress appropriate to the Organization. Comfortable clothes to you. Show you have made effort. Shows that you are serious about the job.

X Distract the interviewer. X Bright colors.

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What you should know about an organization


Potential advancements. Atmosphere. Benefits. Bonuses. Dress code. Ethics and integrity. Owners. Flexible / rigid structure. Org. goals. Growth potential. Training. Turnover. Company type Main customers.
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Keep them In your heart

Company history. Location. Management philosophy. Management structure. Office politics. Previous problems faced. Product / services. Profit / sales volume. Reputation. Research. Relocation potential. Size. Stability.

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Big Day

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Ready to go to the BIG DAY !

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The Big Day

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Big Day Objectives


1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Going to the interview. Interview Principles , skills & tips Playing the game First Impression Verbal communication The interview questions Gesture and body language Worst Case Scenarios
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Going to the interview


Your route: PLACE Know how to get there. How long it will take. Always allow for extra time.

Arrival: TIME Five minutes early is about right. Always be polite and friendly to everybody

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Interview principles;
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. Opportunity for two people to meet. Its two way street (Not begging, youre equal). The employer is on your side (He wants to hire you). Objection is not a rejection. Let the employer talk and you listen. Increase your chance for second interview (dress , time..etc). Hiring decision is based on emotions. Focus on your accomplishments examples. Be yourself and be the best in it. Use examples to back up statements (STAR). Be prepared to elaborate the CV details. Project confidence all over. Send thank you note. Relax and enjoy.
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Key interviewing skills


Active listening. Preparation. Building Rapport/Relationship.
(Trust, respect & use his name or the companys)

Be yourself yet the best. Control the content not the interview. Get info about the job. Learn to talk about yourself. Let others speak for you
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Interview tips;
Get plenty of rest Watch cultural difference Dress appropriately Bring pen and pad Remember the interviewer name Shake hands firmly Wait before you sit Look for interviewer interests No smoking or gum chewing No profanity Keep it interesting Go in with agenda Dont ask silly Q Dont assume

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Playing the interview game


The pregnant pause
Dont answer rapidly every question. Go pregnant pause after a relatively tough question. Other wise you are who shoots from the hip

Eye contact
Constant eye contact is unnatural Normal conversation, speaker looks away 30-70% of the time Staring makes me uncomfortable

Truthfulness
There is no pillow as soft as a clear conscience. (John Wooden) If u tell z truth you dont need such a good memory (Mark Twain)

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Overcoming objections
Objection is not a rejection
Its request for more info. Employer needs reassurance about experience and learning. Its opportunity.

Predict the objection youll face


Its raises doubts about your ability You dont have enough experience

Dont argue with employers

He: you dont have enough experience in this field You: I realize there may b others w more experience, but I really feel the quality of my experience is the key. Because of the variety of things Ive done, and my level of responsibility earned. I see my five years r equivalent to most people w the 10. There is no question in my mind that I can do an outstanding job for you.

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Master story telling art


Describe yourself
Let me tell you Im hard working,energetic,a true leader and a person who can juggle multiple tasks Problem: Selling too many things so you dont do good job w any of them
(NO EXAMPLES !)

Employer should remember you for weeks. Stories have impact. A non-work experience with a work experience. Show how you overcame the problem.
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Contd

STAR Key points for telling stories


1- Provide all key information's 2- Describe the situation as you came into 3- Describe your analysis & recommendations 4- Describe what you implemented & results obtained 5- Provide interesting details (KISS) 6- Make the story interesting

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Describing Accomplishments
Telling vivid stories requires practice
1- Write 12 accomplishments and write brief descriptions for each 2- Practice giving 3 min. version, 2 min. version & 1 min. version of each

Quantify results. Results sells people. Which / Which resulted in.

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First Impression

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First Impression Elements


7%

38%

55%

Appearance Speech Words

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Verbal / Non Verbal Communication


Greet the interviewer with a strong handshake. Eye contact is an important component of the interview. Always feel relaxed not confused or somewhat stressed.

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Talking Vs. Listening time


20%

Talking Listening

80%

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During The Interview


Sell yourself and be confident about your qualifications. Be honest about your decision criteria of the job. Emphasize the positive sides of your personality.
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Keep them In your heart

Advice

Honest Stay positive in all your answers Promote your skills Have your body language Be straight forward

Enthusiasm

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Project Enthusiasm
Demonstrate it throughout the interview Perform an enthusiasm check
(Straight up in the chair, introduce more hand gestures, tones, add feelings to your talk)

Your potential is your future worth to the organization Show it thru accomplishments Selling potential can overcome ur lack of experience

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Use Power words;


Built Created Decreased Designed Enhanced Established Generated Implemented Won Improved Increased Initiated Introduced Organized Saved Sold Solved Transformed

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Use personality skills in interview


The most admirable skills, Universally accepted Accepting Goal oriented Appreciative Growth oriented Assertive Honesty / Integrity Cheerful Insightful Compassionate Loyal Considerate Mature Cooperative Motivated Decision making Open-minded Decisive Optimistic Diplomatic Patient Discreet Persistent Drive Reliable Easy going Resourceful Effective under stress Responsible Efficient / Productive Risk-taking Emotionally stable Self-confidant Energetic / Stamina Sense of humor Enthusiastic Sincere Flexible Sound judgment Forgiving Tactful Friendly / Nice Thorough Generous

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Talking tips (Do)


Wait for him to finish speaking. Take time, and collect your thoughts. Answer the question. Speak simple and professional. Humor is important but be serious. You will appear Calm, Confident & Polite.

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Talking tips (Donts)


X Answer before being asked. X Quickly fill the silence. X Ask irrelevant questions to the job. X Use the umms, ahhs and slang. X Use your own jargons profanity. X Interrupt Being smart is never expressed by words.
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Example
A1: Be honest A2: Simple A3: Clarify A4: Clarify A5: Enthusiast
A6: Impress

Q:

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The Interview Questions


Tell me about your self? Why did you leave your job? What is your biggest weakness? What is you biggest strength Why can you do the job? Whats your great weakness? Why you change jobs so frequently? What is your biggest mistake in career? How would your supervisor / friends describe you? Tell me a story? Tell me a joke? What can you offer that others dont? What is your major accomplishments?

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Tell me about yourself ?


The simplest Yet can be the hardest. Be yourself. Prepare
Experience Skills Education Ambition

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Tell me about yourself? Experience


Experience Choose relevant experience. How you are profiled. Highlighting relevant work achievements. Fresh graduate, speak about summer training

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Tell me about yourself? Skills


Skills List the relevant skills. Employers look for skills like
attention to detail. strong communication. dealing with deadlines.

Programming skills doesnt mean much for administrative position!

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Tell me about yourself? Education


Education: Vital for the less-experienced. Is it relevant? Did you taking relevant courses

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Tell me about yourself? Ambition


Ambitions: What are you looking for What are you seeking to fulfill. Other Qualities Travel experience, associations and activities.

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Tell me about yourself?


Put it in Writing See the below example:
A sales representative job in a software company requiring 2 years experience would need a personal commercial that goes something like: I have been following a sales career for the last 2 years in the software industry. I have been handling various account sectors, especially the tourism and hospitality sector. At my last job, I was noted for surpassing my target, and helped raise sales by 30% in one year. My strengths are in communication. I pride myself on being able to establish a relationship with my clients and being able to maintain them. I am always meet deadlines, and work well under pressure. My degree in business has helped me get a grip of this career, as well as my coursework in psychology. I have participated in several sales-oriented workshops.
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Example
Be yourself Ambition /Goal Skills/ Education

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Ten things Employers looks for


1. What results youll achieve? 2. How soon youll b productive? 3. How much supervision will u need? 4. Do u generate more value than cost? 5. 5. Can you become high performer? 1. 2. 3. 4. Will u fit into the culture? Will u b fun to work with? Are u responsible? Can u manage ur own development? Will u stay?

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How to excite the employer?


MSSR needs ! Show that you can; 1- Make money for the organization
(Sales, TQM, CS)

2- Save money for the organization


(Productivity,Cut costs, Efficiency)

3- Solve problems the employer is facing 4- Reduce stress level


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Why did you leave your job ?


Stay Positive Show desire for growth opportunities. Employers are looking for employees with good attitudes even when working in bad situations.

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Why did you leave your job ? Fired?


Be honest. Quickly explain it No details especially the political ones. Never ever lie about it or around it

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Why did you leave? Laid off?


It is no longer the same as before. Nothing to apologize for or act defeated. Express yourself simply as follows :
Because of the economy, the company decided to eliminate 2 departments including mine. Privatization necessitates rightsizing. Reasons should be described in such way that interviewer believes he would have left under those circumstances also.

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Why did you leave your job ? Quit ?


Be honest and stay positive. Simply the job was not challenging enough. You are seeking higher levels of responsibility and ready to make the next step on your career ladder.

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Why are you leaving your current position?


Stay positive, even if your previous company has
left a negative impression.
Employers are looking for employees with good attitudes even when working in bad situations.

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What is your biggest weakness ?


Simply, tell him Why he shouldnt hire you.

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What is your biggest weakness ?


Why is he asking ? Mention your weakness. Discuss what you have done to overcome it. Criteria of the chosen weakness:
Real. Understandable. Relatively harmless. Work-related.

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Examples
"I used to have some problems with organization. So now I carry a schedule book throughout the day and I also use this Palm Pilot to keep me on track. It's worked out great!

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Examples
"Once in a while, I focus too much on the details of a project. So now, when I'm working on a project, I always make sure at the end of the day to sit back and take a few minutes to think about the general scope of my work. It forces me to keep priorities straight and helps me keep the right mindset."

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Examples
I tend to be a perfectionist. I sometimes work too hard, leading to unnecessary stress. Work life balance. Used to do things all by myself, now I learned delegation.

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What is your greatest strength


This is a great question to SCAN your skills. Talk about your skills confidentially. Such as being able to plan and organize information.

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Body Language
Personal image is more than just clothes. Smile, make eye contact with all interviewers. Sit back in the chair to be comfortable and confident but don't lounge. Keep still (fiddling, scratching, and arms in a knot indicate nervousness and defensiveness). If you are very nervous, refuse tea or coffee (a rattling cup is a giveaway). Breathing out helps you to remain calm (but breathing in makes your voice go higher!)
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Gestures
Spatial gestures indicate openness. Leaning forward adds emphasis to a point. Leaning backward, to put distance between yourself and the interviewer. Touching your face means that you are stucked, lying or dont know.
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Nervous Candidate

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Interviewer Body Talks

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Body Language - Watch it

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Worst case Scenarios


Late for the interview ? Dont know how to answer a question ? Forgot to bring copies of my resumes ? Called the interviewer by the wrong name ?

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I am going to be late
Take a deep breath, collect your thoughts and rehearse for the coming phone call. He will accept incidents of the couldnt be avoided category.
What does he want to know ?
Why are you late ? What is the realistic estimation of your time of arrival ? Courteous apology.

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Example
Salam Alaikom. This is Mohamad Salah. I have an 11 a.m. interview today for the editor position. Unfortunately, my car has broken down. I should be able to get there in 25 minutes if that's OK. I apologize for the inconvenience and I wanted to inform you as soon as possible."

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I Don't Know how to answer !!


Thats really a good question. Dont use the ummms & ahhhs. Dont ask for time to think. Ask for clarification for the question or a difficult part of it. If you dont need it, dont ask for it. (Molehill out of a mountain) Simply say, Dont know the answer
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Forgot to Bring My Resume!


Acknowledge it upfront. Give a practical excuse. (Lazy?) "I just wanted to let you know that I planned ahead to bring copies of my resume, but my printer didn't cooperate. It broke down on me. I can e-mail you a copy after the interview if that's OK." Make sure you have all emails that likes to have it.

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I Called him by the Wrong Name!


Reasons. Mohamad, I'm sorry. I've met so many great people today, and I'm trying to put names with all the faces. Mohamad, I apologize." Mention his name in the apology. What if the opposite happens ?

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Ways to rescue dying interview


1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Smile Ask Questions Get Feed back Compliments You did everything

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You did everything


Youve done every effort to succeed but you still have the feeling its not working!! Follow the advice:
Just do your best and move-on. Dont worry about things you cannot control.

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Do you have any questions for me?


Yes, you do. You should have one or two. It shows that you:

Have been listening. Made your research about the company.

Never ask about salary, vacation days or other benefits.

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Do you have question for me?



Switch the focus from yourself to the interviewer. Let him do some of the talk. He might reveal one of the clues you need. Prepare your questions in advance.
What's your favorite thing about working at this company? How would you describe the working environment here? What's a typical day like in the department? Why this job is available? What happened with your share price?

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Examples
Does this job usually lead to other positions at the company? What kind of positions? What do you like best about this company? Why? I'm very interested in this job. It's exactly the kind of job that I'm looking for. What is the next step in the interview process? If I got the chance what will be the career pathway What was last year % turn over ?

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End The Big day Journey

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If you get the job, have a great sigh of relief. If you don't get the job, then you have one final stage to go through. If you get to interview stage it means that you can do the job. Remember: they are looking for the right person for the job not the best person overall.

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Finally;

Don't forget to be yourself. Looking natural and feeling confident is your best asset.

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The End