Preparing for a job interview

Summer brings up a lot of opportunities. It can mean summer school, traveling, catching up on Netflix, or more commonly, getting a job. Especially true for those who have just graduated, finding and landing a job can be stressful. But finding and applying for jobs is only the first half of the search. The hardest part may be in the interview that follows. For those of you applying for jobs, there are some established 'dos' and 'don'ts' for making sure the interview goes as smoothly as possible. Here are some things to remember before going in to an interview.

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The New York Times released some insight on preparing for a job interview. First on the list was to know the company you're trying to work for. It would be incredibly unprofessional to walk in not knowing anything about the company first. Some pre-interview research could really come in handy. Perhaps the owner of the company went to the same college as you or was in a similar extra curricular. Having a link to connect you and the interviewer will personalize the interview and reflect your knowledge and interest in the job/company.

Once a thorough and detailed research on the company, including its trends, faults and weaknesses, has been done, the most important step after is to prepare for the actual questions in the interview. While the exact questions asked are unknown, have a list of detailed experiences that show growth or achievement in a work environment ready. Take along some samples of your work in case it better illustrates the type of work you've done. Be comfortable and prepared in telling them who you are and the specific responsibilities and challenges you've dealt with. This will show you are ready for any question on the spot as well as leave you with great specific answers, versus vague explanations of what you did at some club meetings.

Being comfortable in your interview leads to exuding confidence. This means no slouching, stuttering, mumbling or fidgeting. Keep eye contact and have a firm handshake. Dressing professionally is also crucial. Even in a more casual atmosphere, it's important to show you take the interview and job seriously.

After the interview is over, email them a thank you note and attach your resume or online profile. The key to a good interview is always confidence and being prepared. A personal interview could be a huge advantage if you do the proper preparations in advance. Know the company and mostly, be your self, your best self.

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