I?ve had a lot of jobs in my life, most of which have been in the television field. In that field, you can expect to move... a lot. Typically, there are to 2 or 3-year contracts then you pack up and find the next market. Since becoming a Marine Corps spouse some moves have been difficult for me, but its all I have ever known career-wise. That's right, in my career even before being a military spouse I expected to move often!
I was a television reporter/anchor for different tv stations across the United States, even working for two NFL football teams as their in-house tv reporter and tv host. I have been a marketing director for a law firm, a pool and beach lifeguard, and even was a medical device sales representative. (Random, I know.)
Having to move so often both in career and in personal life, I have had a little experience going through the interview process. I?d like to share five of the most valuable interviewing skills I?ve obtained throughout the years.
Be confident, not cocky.
It?s crucial to be confident in your abilities. If you are applying for a position, chances are you know how to do the job or at least have some idea of what it will entail. Take the experience you have and use that during your interview. If you don?t have the exact experience, that?s okay too, use your education or certifications as a showcase of your abilities. Show them that you are coachable and if you really want to impress them- take the time to learn about those skills ahead of time, even if it is a general overview. Make sure that you are coming off as knowledgeable, but not a know it all. Nobody likes that, not to mention it lacks class. Believe in yourself! After all, if you don?t believe in yourself, how do you expect the interviewer to believe that you?re capable of working for their company?
Do your research.
Not only should you have a good understanding of the position you are applying for, but you should know the company to the best of your ability. Research. Study. Find out everything you can about the company prior to your interview. Not only is this impressive to the interviewer, but it shows you truly care about the position and are ?all-in.? An easy way to do this is by making connections on LinkedIn with people from that company and then talking to them about what they do- this isn?t the time to ask for a referral, but it can help you get a leg up on the competition.
Yes, you read that correctly. Know yourself. Be honest with what you know and what you don?t know, but assure the interviewer that you are the right person for the position. You should know what makes you stand out from your competitors. What makes you unique? What are your greatest assets and how can they help make the company better? Why an interviewer should hire you over someone else? These are all things you should know about yourself. Plan out how to answer those questions or similar questions, and always relate the response back to not only your experience but also directly to the company. If you are not quite sure how to answer those questions, take a little time to do some soul-searching and figure it out. If you don't know yourself, how can you properly help an interviewer know you?
Many people breeze by this section of the interview but it is very important and should be treated that way. Think of it like this, you may be the one getting interviewed for the position, but you are the one interviewing the company. Will you be a good fit? Do you all have similar goals regarding work? What is the process from here? Take the bull by the horns, so to speak, and ask if you?re a top candidate and even ask if there is anything you can clarify for them before you leave. It will show you have done your research giving you have an all-in mentality, helping ease the stress of not knowing if you answered something correctly, and letting you know just what to expect next and when.
This may sound cliché, but being yourself allows you to truly showcase your knowledge, skills, and abilities. Pretending to be someone you are not will only be a problem in the end. Honesty is truly the best policy and its one trait you want to make sure you exude from the first hello to the offer, acceptance and even resignation. Be sincere and honest, and everything else will follow.
Let me leave you with one final piece of advice. Don?t be nervous and have fun! Wear a smile knowing that some nerves are okay, and are totally normal, but don?t let them get the best of you. You are applying for this position because you believe you are the best candidate for the job and company. Own it, and luck good! If you feel like you may need a little more assistance in fine-tuning your interview skills, our Employment Specialists are able to help guide you.
Written By: Alexandra O'Neil