Once you have successfully gotten past an organization’s initial job screen (by submitting a solid resume that documents your skills and experience that gets you “in the door”), your next task is to stand out in the interview. To do so, you must be prepared to demonstrate more than what is in your resume. When you interview you must bring more than a list of tasks and experiences from your past; you must bring your intellect and creative energy to the interview.
Here are a couple of things that you can do that will help you stand out in an interview.
- Think ahead about what you want the interviewers to know about you. They may or may not ask it directly in their set of questions, so it’s important that you are ready to articulate the traits and the specific skills that you possess that will be valuable for this position. Examples include such things as your ability to see both the big picture objectives as well as the details that support the achievement. It could include your commitment and inspiration about the purpose or mission of the work, or the satisfaction you derive from working with dedicated, professional people on projects that matter. Think deeply about what sets you apart in this way and then find ways to weave these bits of information into the interview.
- Be sure and ask thought-provoking questions when asked at the end of the interview. Ask questions that are pertinent to the business (not when do you start or when will you know about the job selection.) Examples could include such questions as, “What are you most excited about as you approach the new year or the future?” or, “What are the most important tasks ahead as you look at the future?” or, “How has the work/industry changed over the last five years and what does that mean to the business?”
These are just a couple of suggestions on how to prepare at an enhanced level for your interview. Always be ready to address the regular aspects of skill and experience, but we believe that you will have a far more successful interview if you include these two aspects in your preparation and delivery.