Good luck at the interview stage

admin, May 29, 2008

I came across this news article earlier this week that I thought I'd share with you, as it made me laugh. OnRec listed a story about how 6 out of 10 candidates wear lucky underwear to a job interview. If you read the article you will see it also lists things like 'An object from childhood ie. blanket or teddy bear.

My immediate image was of a job applicant sitting in the reception waiting for their interview with their much loved teddy bear poking out the top of their bag alongside a copy of their CV and references. But the more discreet options are probably much more regular.

Nightmare stories are out there on terrible interviews, but much angst can be put down to being unprepared for an interview. Preparation is key to ensure you don't look like an 'eejut' when they ask you the first question. With the wealth of information available on the internet, there really isn't any excuse for checking your potential employer and what the potential work environment is like.

First step: Search Engines! Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, Ask, a basic step on the internet of wisdom. Find the corporate website for your potential employer, check it out, do they have a news section, newsletters, are they blogging, or are people blogging about them?

Second step: Social networkingкомпютри sites are also another opportunity to utilise your research skills. Where are people talking about this organisation? Facebook, Bebo, My Space? When you start your career, for many it helps define them and their social circles so you can check out whats going on by getting a little web savvy. Don't be naive to think this doesn't go both ways though, social sites have security settings, just make sure you know how to use them. Linkedin is another great way to do a little more business research, they are soon to implement a company profile page which has got to be a crucial recruitment tool for organisations.

Third step: Ask questions, you are about to make a massive commitment, up to 5 days a week (or more) for what could possibly be years. How can you not want to ask questions? Be strategic though, salary questions or asking to be shown who you're sitting next too is not appropriate at such an early stage. Corporate Social Responsibility, and carbon footprint seem to be on many people's agenda, or possibly the culture within an organisation and whether socially there are corporate events that are organised, sports teams etc. Definition around the role is appropriate as not all job descriptions are as accurate as one would think.

The rest is up to you, put your best foot forward, ensure you dress appropriately (leave the killer heels and ripped jeans for the evening) and good luck!