During the Interview

 
 
  • Greet the interviewer by name (use Mr./ Ms./ Mrs./ Dr. as appropriate). Be certain you know how to correctly pronounce his/her name. You should initiate handshake.

  • Bring copies of your resume and copies of other pertinent documents.

  • Try to be relaxed, yet attentive.

  • Don't wiggle your foot or put the death grip on the arm of the chair. It is okay to let the interviewer know that this is your first interview or that you are nervous. Remember, interviewers are people too, and they have been in your shoes. If you are honest about being nervous, he/she may be more understanding than if you try to put up a false front.

  • Give short answers that demonstrate honesty and knowledge. DON'T TRY TO INCLUDE EVERYTHING YOU KNOW ABOUT THE SUBJECT. This is not the time to recite a book. Remember, it is usually obvious when a person is "trying to impress"... just be yourself.

  • DO NOT offer negative information that is not asked for. If asked, "Can you type?", say yes or no. Avoid qualifying your answer by saying things like "I can type 20 words a minute." Communicate to the interviewer that you are QUALIFIED for the position, not unqualified.

  • If you do not understand the interviewer's question, ask for clarification. This will help you avoid talking too much and/or not answering the question that was asked. Interviewer's report that one of the biggest "turn offs" is when an applicant rambles on and on without ever answering the specific question that was asked.

  • Don't simply agree with whatever the interviewer asks you. One person agreed that he was "getting really tired of taking IQ tests," when in fact, he had only taken one IQ test. The interviewer decided that the applicant did well on the IQ test because he had had lots of practice. This was, of course, incorrect.

  • Maintain a comfortable amount of eye contact. Do not "stare him/her down," but it is far better to have too much eye contact than not enough. DO NOT look down at the floor or at your feet. It is generally believed that if a person cannot look another person straight in the eye, then he/she is not "coming clean" with the other person. You certainly don't want to appear that you are hiding something.

  • Educate yourself on illegal interview questions. Some employers may ask you these questions to obtain additional information.

  • Let the interviewer know if he/she has answered all of your questions. As was mentioned earlier, interviewers expect serious applicants to have questions in mind.

  • If you decide that the job is not exactly what you want, let the interviewer know this toward the end of the interview. This may increase the chance that the interviewer will recommend you to someone else.

  • Establish when you can expect to hear from them again. If the interviewer does not specify a time, you have a right to ask. Generally, a period of two weeks is standard. If the interviewer tells you that he/she will be back in touch within a certain period of time, you should be patient until that amount of time has passed. If the time period passes and you still have not heard from the organization, you can call the interviewer.