(Sorry this is so off topic but I just need some advice in a hurry)
So basically I am horrible at speaking with people. But alas, I was offered to be interviewed one on one for something that I cannot possibly turn down. I have never been interviewed in my life and am beyond terrified. I do know some of the questions he may ask me which is a plus. Any advice or thoughts on how I should prepare would be a tremendous help. Thank you guys so much
(Sorry this is so off topic but I just need some advice in a hurry)
It would be useful to know what it’s for or it’s hard to give advice, will try to help if possible!
Is it for a job?
Bring an extra resume.
Research the company’s values, a bit about the person interviewing yourself and of course the position.
Make sure you remember to provide past examples of your work - So give examples of a time when you needed to overcome a challenge in the workplace, a time when you showed great leadership, a time where you etc.
Make sure to always ask a follow up question, when they say any questions - It shows you are interested in learning more.
Hope this helps.
This is spot on and concise. They may ask strengths and weaknesses also. So maybe have a couple of those things in mind!
Good luck my friend!
It is a university interview. Academically I am in the range (25 to 75th percentiles) and I have a lot of good extra curricular activities, but because it is a “top university” they reject tons of well qualified candidates ( like my sister who had been grades and test scores than me but less extra curriculars).
Thank you so much for your fast reply
Thank you for this advice, I will definitely make sure to bring a copy of my resume and it is super brilliant to have the past experiences of leadership and such already in mind. Thank you so much for this!
I’m applying to college now too. I had an interview with MIT several weeks ago. Honestly what you should do is rehearse some answers and things you want to say to obvious questions, but for the most part BE NATURAL. They want to see that you are a unique and personable person, not a robot that can read your resume and statistics. The interview is supposed to be to get a sense of who you are. Be prepared to try to tell a funny story or something. Try to be sociable. I mean I got wait-listed so this might not be the most credible advice but it’s what everyone says lol.
If you don’t know the answer to a question, do not guess or BS or try to make something up. Instead, calmly state that you’re unsure of the answer and ask an intelligent followup question that shows you know how to problem solve.
There may be a post on a university forum that mentions prior interview questions, worth googling… I’ve been able to find lots of questions for the grad program I’m interested in. Also helps to remember that if you’ve made it to the interview stage, the interviewer WANTS you to succeed or it’s a waste of their time – so they are on your side!
So, I was a hiring manager for several years in retail. Granted, this may not be an apples to apples comparison considering the job, but I can give you advise on what does work in any interview:
Don’t be yourself, be the best version of yourself.
It’s a little bit like going on a date for the first time. You want to show them who you are in the best possible light. They already know you are human and have flaws, they are going to evaluate you on a whole level not just what pros you have.
Don’t get down on yourself. Nobody in there wants to have a pity party. Find ways to be optimistic, learn to answer “tough” questions in a way where you make a positive experience out of it. “What is your greatest challenge” or something similar is a typical interview question. Find a way to make that answer about learning from an experience, or find a way to make your challenge a chance to exploit an opportunity from it. Worst answer you can give is by saying you were defeated… and that’s it.
Don’t bullshit the interviewer
We know when you’re full of it. This falls back on best version of yourself. I once had a guy tell me the reason he left his last job is because he hated the work and the hours. The position we had for him, was literally the same thing, and I made a point to tell him that. As soon as I said that too him he jumped on a soap box and told me what a great company we were and how he loved to work as hard as he could and never missed a day blah blah blah. I ended the interview.
Read your interviewer
This is actually a little bit harder to do and is a little more in the realm of “people skills” than anything else. Does your interviewer nod when you say something? Does he/she pause when you give an answer? Does the interviewer converse with you or just ask questions? (Try to get them to converse, it shows them your human). Making adjustments mid interview is not a bad strategy. The last interview I had with the company I’m currently with I was in a room with a Senior manager and a (standard) manager. Both young guys slightly older than myself, with wedding rings on. I made it a point to talk about kids. We talked about their kids for 20 straight mins. I found something that could be a conversation piece and ran with it.
Best interview I ever had, we laughed, swore, talked video games, family and of course the job. I was chosen out of seven candidates and all of them were more qualified than I was. I got them to like me, showed them I was human, showed them I had other interests, other passions, and could do the work.
- Feed back is a gift
Sounds like your field is slightly more competitive than my own, so take feedback -even rejection- as a good thing. In the event they don’t take you. Ask if there is something you could have done better, don’t be afraid to ask, they have already rejected you. And don’t become defensive about it, just accept what they have to say.
No matter what happens, become better from the experiance. Good luck dude!
How much time do you have?
Depending on the time, you will have different ways to nail the interview better.
If your interview is tomorrow, the best you can do is to catch up on obviously questions that would be asked (since you know the questions, evidently prep for those) and don’t blunder on basic questions. Then, more importantly, get a good night’s sleep and please dress as appropriate as possible. First impressions count a lot, and remember, if you give them exactly what they want to hear, you just become the average. What they are looking for is what makes you different compared to the other qualified candidates.
Super good stuff! Thank you so much for such an in-depth analysis of interviewing (especially because of your background). I really like the wedding ring story, I hope I can think on my feet that fast
Also, the part about asking and learning about how you can be better for the next time is another fantastic idea. I honestly think I am going to take notes and do some practice runs to see how I can improve with all of this new advice.
Luckily I have around a week or so, but I will definitely focus on what makes me unique and how I would contribute to the school in ways that most students wouldn’t be able to.
I’ve been working on this for quite a while going to my school’s career networking center twice a semester for the past couple years working on resume building and interviewing skills in preparation for what you’re doing. Before that I also worked in retail as an assistant manager and I worked with the GM on hiring and interviews. There are some great posts here but I really, really liked all the advice @silversnorlax204 wrote down. Everything they said nailed it.
In addition, I would reemphasize that you should Google who you’re interviewing with and try to learn as much as possible about the organization. The question “what do you know about [insert company/school]?” could very well come up, and may even be the interviewers first question. I would also highly suggest looking up the S.T.A.R. technique and learning about that. It’s just a way of responding to questions about situations with a clear path from “here’s what the problem was” to “here’s what I learned from it.”
Finally, keep your appearance in check as much as possible! You can express your level of care by how you dress and carry yourself, and it’s a big confidence boost when you feel like you look your best. Beyond clothing, keep your nails nice and your hair (head and facial) kept so that it looks intentional.
Best of luck!
Be upbeat and enthusiastic.
EXPLAIN HOW ACCEPTING YOU WOULD BE GOOD FOR THEM. Works every time;)
Really neat about the S.T.A.R. technique! I will definitely look in to incorporating it into the way I approach answering. Thanks!
Follow up with them after and send an email saying thanks for taking the time and maybe ask about next steps and if they need any more information from you. Goodluck
HOW GREAT IS THIS COMMUNITY - running to this persons aid about something completely un-Pokemon related.
Yes – a lot of young people think it’s unimportant to send a thank you email. This is a huge mistake. Send a thank you email that explicitly mentions things you learned during the interview (based on the questions you asked) and how great it was to hear more about XXX. I do a mild amount of hiring at my current job and if a candidate doesn’t send a thank you email it’s a big red flag.
Honestly this! It just goes to show the quality of people on this site and how strong the community is. I honestly don’t think I will ever find a better community that the E4/PKMN squad.