Interviewing Tips: General Tips

Interviewing for jobs and internships can be exciting, intimidating and nerve-wracking all at the same time.  Here are some suggestions to navigate the interview process effectively and make a positive impression during an interview:

Be confident, communicate clearly and remain poised.  It’s common to be nervous meeting someone new as you interview for a job or internship.  Successful interview candidates are confident during the interview – confidence can be a positive sign of your belief in your abilities. During the interview, be mindful of your posture, demonstrate good eye contact and speak with a confident tone of voice.

Share your story.  While you will be asked to respond directly to several questions during a typical interview, it’s important to share your story to explain your relevant experiences and qualifications for the role.  Providing a 30-60 second response to common interview questions such as “Tell me about yourself” or “Walk me through your resume” can be helpful to showcase your narrative.  Focus on your most significant and relevant experiences and be intentional with transitions in your story.

Structure your responses to interview questions.  Responding to interview questions in a structured manner helps the interviewer understand and remember your most important points.  Consider using the STAR method (situation, task, action and results) to organize a longer response into an effective answer.

Ask thoughtful questions at the end of the interview.  Employers try to gauge a candidate’s interest in the role based on questions they ask at the end of the interview.  Ask questions focused on what you want to learn about an employer that would be helpful for you.  Try to tailor your question(s) to the individual interviewer(s) – be careful and avoid asking questions the interviewer may be unable to answer.  Use your interview questions to help determine if the employer and position are the best fit for you.

Send a brief thank you note after the interview.  Be prompt and send an email to your interviewer after the session – mention something specifically discussed during the interview that was significant to you while thanking the person for their time and consideration.  Sending a thank you note is good etiquette and can reinforce your interest in the position.

Career Services wishes you the best as you navigate the interview process!  Connect with us for individual assistance and guidance.

By David Ross
David Ross Director, Undergraduate Career Initiatives