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Job Interviewing - Ten Tips for Success!

Whether this job interview is your first or your 51st, it never hurts to brush up on your skills and do some advance prep work to ensure success. Learn how to play up your key strengths, minimize your weaknesses, and make a great impression overall. Here are ten tips from my arsenal of career advice.

1. Relax, you'll be more authentic and confident if you do.

The best suggestion I can give before an interview is to just relax. Easier said than done, right? It helps to remember that you have education, training, and experience working in your favor. Think of all the ways you provided value to your past employer. Did you land a huge account? Go above and beyond on a certain project? Take a deep breath, recall your accomplishments, and let go of the tension. Know that you're worthy... and who knows. Maybe you're even overqualified for the position!

2. Remember, you're interviewing them, too.

So many people view the job interview as a test - and they'd better pass with flying colors or they're in trouble! On some level, yes, you're being tested - but the "test" is simply to see if you're a good match for the company. It works the other way, too. This is your chance to see if theirs is the kind of corporate culture that fits your style. It's possible that you'll get there and find out you don't even want the job! Or, you might figure out that it's only worth it if they meet you at a certain salary amount. Ask lots of questions... know what you're getting into, and then weigh your options carefully.

3. Be prepared, know the company.

You'll notice that many companies not only have a specific "personality," but they're mighty proud of the little perks and quirks that make them unique. Do they have their own brand of soda, like Microsoft? Do they offer Flex Time for working parents? Find out if they're noteworthy in the news. Visit their company website and do your online research. Were they part of a recent merger? There is no better way to show your sincere interest than actually being interested. You might learn something really cool about this company that tells you, "Go for it!" Or, you could uncover some hidden dirt that makes you think twice before working there.

4. Take the pressure off... you have options!

Think of the job interview as an opportunity to cast seeds and check things out. This is a "get to know you" or feeling out phase, not a contest or do-or-die situation. Try to avoid becoming too attached to any one job. That old saying, "Don't put all your eggs in one basket" could not be more true than for the career search. Sometimes things take an unexpected twist or turn. You could be "90 percent sure" that you'll be on Company X's payroll next month... and suddenly the phone rings with an even better offer.

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