As one of the leading employment agencies in Lynchburg, Adams & Garth understands that interviews are always a stressful proposition. However, some situations are certainly more nerve-wracking than others.
For instance, imagine walking into a job interview expecting a face-to-face with one person and it’s actually a panel interview.
To ensure you do a great job – regardless of the type of interview – here are a few tips to help you prepare:
1. The Phone Screen
The purpose of this type of interview is simple: It gives a hiring manager a chance to assess you without having to invest a lot of time.
When you’re facing a phone screen, there are a few things you can do to prepare:
- Make sure you have access to a quiet room in which you’ll be undisturbed.
- Research the company and prepare a list of questions just as if it were a face-to-face interview.
- Be ready to promote your strengths. The great thing about phone interviews is that the hiring manager can’t see you. So, if you need to, jot down a few key thoughts you want to get across so you don’t forget them.
2. The Job Fair Interview
Like the phone screen, a job fair interview is typically a mini-interview that helps an employer decide whether or not they want to learn more about you as a candidate.
For job fair interviews, be sure to:
- Always dress appropriately and present yourself in a professional manner. Too many job candidates see job fairs in a more casual light. By looking sharp, you’ll set yourself apart.
- Find out the companies who are attending the job fair ahead of time (most organizers post lists online). If there are certain ones you know you’d like to work for, then research them ahead so you can show the interviewer you’ve done your homework.
- When talking to the interviewer, focus on one or two key strengths that you think would contribute most to the company. The better job you do at selling yourself, the greater your chance for getting called for an interview.
3. The Panel Interview
For most job candidates, the panel interview is the one they fear most. This is when you’re interviewing with an entire group of people (managers, HR professionals, potential co-workers, etc.) – so it can sometimes feel like more of an interrogation and less of a job interview.
To keep your nerves in check and put your best foot forward, consider the following:
- Don’t get caught off guard. When scheduling the interview, ask specifically who will be in attendance. This will tell you a) how many people you’re interviewing with so you can mentally prepare and b) who they are so you can research them ahead of time.
- While there are certain people on the panel you may connect with immediately, don’t concentrate solely on them. Be sure to focus some attention on each person and make eye contact with everyone.
- Send a thank you note to each participant after the interview. Be sure to write something unique in each person’s note because, oftentimes, they’ll compare notes.
4. The third interview.
It used to be you’d interview once for a job and find out whether or not you got it. Today, though, many employers are using subsequent interviews to ensure they don’t make a hiring mistake.
If you’re on your third – or fourth or fifth – interview, you might start feeling burned out and disengaged. To ensure you maintain your enthusiasm, here are a few tips to consider:
- Before the interview, think about why you want the job. Make a list of the amazing opportunities, the great salary and benefits, the chance to advance your career, etc. Once you remind yourself of all the advantages, you’ll re-ignite your excitement.
- Ask about when the employer will be making a decision. Once you have a clearer sense of how long the timeframe will be, you can better prepare for it.
Need more help with your job search? Give Adams & Garth a call.
As one of the leading employment agencies in Lynchburg, we work with some of the top employers throughout Central Virginia and we can connect you with opportunities that are oftentimes not advertised.