Many candidates express confidence that they interview well. Many employers express sentiments otherwise! Surveys show that candidates frequently overestimate their effectiveness in interview situations. This is probably because they don’t get the opportunity to listen to themselves or listen to their competition.
Job interviewing is a high-stakes activity. Do it well and an offer of employment is a likely outcome. Do it poorly and you are rejected. The importance of an excellent résumé and cover letter, notwithstanding, it is the job interview that ultimately determines every hiring decision. Therefore, I encourage each and every job seeker to put maximum effort into interview preparation. Shrewd candidates practice for interviews. Practicing adds polish and prepares you for the difficult questions.
Your “job” as the applicant is to anticipate the questions you may be asked, formulate impressive and cohesive responses, and then deliver those somewhat rehearsed answers in a way that sounds completely natural and off-the-cuff.
Preparing yourself for the typical interview questions is essential. However, know that a skilled interviewer will not simply ask you the standard questions. He or she may also challenge you with technical questions unique to your occupation or behavior-based questions. You may even be given a test to assess your personality attributes or your skill level with computer software. This is often done on-the-spot as part of the interview process.
Interview Practice Sessions
Interview coaching can do wonders to get you ready for the real thing. You will be coached on what to say in response to all types of questions and what questions you should and should not ask of your interviewer. Based on your unique background and the kind of work you seek, I will give you an “interview agenda.” Your interview agenda will be the most important points I want you to convey during your interview. These talking points may include specific accomplishments you have had that I think are particularly pertinent to the new position as well as personality characteristics you possess that are also relevant to your future success. If you are willing, we will actually role play and rehearse your responses. In addition, during our practice session, issues related to your speech rate, facial expressions, and body language will also be addressed.
A typical interview coaching session is 1.5 hours. Some individuals need just one session while others benefit from a second session, and very rarely, a third. If we need to do additional sessions, it will only be because we both feel you need them in order to be successful on your real-life interview day. You are welcome to bring your own questions but this is NOT necessary as I always develop both basic and advanced questions in preparation for these sessions. My feedback will include very specific coaching as I will tell you exactly what to say in response to questions you have difficulty with. I will also prepare you to discuss salary issues effectively, which is often a very tricky topic to finesse.
The fee for the 1.5 hour interview coaching session is $250. Subsequent sessions, which may be of shorter duration, will be billed at the rate of $100/hour.
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