Effective Pre-interview preparations

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January 27, 2011

Pre interview preparation begins much before you even apply for the job. You need to have a good career plan in place, your resume made as marketable as possible and more. So, let’s go one by one.
Career plan
A career plan can be made once you have identified content knowledge, transferable skills and identified your positive personal qualities.
Content knowledge consists of those subjects and areas that are familiar to you and also your areas of expertise or specializations. For example, a real estate broker will have knowledge of financing, mortgage banking, property development etc.
The next step in pre interview preparation is to identify your transferable skills. Transferable skills can be thought of as functions, actions or behaviors that you actually do. For example, someone interested in investment banking will have the skills to analyse financial data, work in teams, write reports etc. You must dig deeper to find out more skills that you have used some time or the other in the past.
Finally, for pre-interview preparation,you need to assess and find out positive personal qualities that would be applicable for the job. These cover a whole range such as creative, dependable, detail-oriented, efficient, enthusiastic, independent, persuasive, responsible etc.
Since this site is a resume writing guide site, you can browse around and get all the information you want. However, expect questions from statements you made in the resume. As pre interview preparation, you may have to expand on statements and give concrete examples.
Research the employer
Today, the web will give you information on almost any company. Information such as Products and services, financial data etc. Your research should be deeper and thorough. For instance, you can find out the corporate culture, values, organisation’s goals for the future and the difficulties facing the organization.
As a pre interview preparation, you must also know as much as possible about the job itself. The skills and personalities required, other departments you would need to interact, the biggest challenges of the job, to whom would you report, its position in the organization hierarchy etc. You may need to track down current or former employees, customers or vendors to get this information. It would be good if you can find out something about your interviewer.
Your research should also extend to the larger world- the sector or the profession in which the company is operating. Trends and developments affect organizations and your knowledge about these will put you ahead of others, especially for managerial positions. Such information can be got from trade journals, financial publications including newspapers etc.
What to take and what to wear?
Take several hard copies of your resume, copy of reference list, a good quality pad and pen. Wherever relevant, carry your portfolio and any sample presentations. Ensure that everything you carry is clean, polished and that all items are well organized so that you can quickly retrieve them during the interview.
Regarding dress, remember that the first impression is formed within few seconds of meeting someone, and 93 percent of the overall impression comes from nonverbal messages. If the organization’s dress code is business attire, wear a suit and tie (for men). If you are confused, you can always ask the human resources department for suggestions on appropriate wear.
Your mental preparation is just as important as all the other factors that we have discussed so far in preparing for pre interview. As a candidate, you have considerable control over the success or failure of the interview process. You can pay attention to your own thoughts and feelings before the interview, and can develop a winning attitude instead of succumbing to self doubt, nervousness or false confidence.
It is important to have your anxiety in check and this article will help you a lot in this direction.
Questions and answers
Since, at the end of the day, interviews are basically a conversation, this is an important area and this will be dealt with in another section.
Article by, Suresh Nair and courtesy of Resume Writing Quick Guide – Quick way to a professional resume

Originally posted by Candice A

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