Master your job interview.
A job interview is like a first date; you want to be well-prepared and ready to impress. Research the company and group you will be interviewing with. In addition to what you can find on the internet, the best way to research the company is through informational interviews.
Before the interview
Prepare for common interview questions and review strategies for how to answer. Refer to the Question Bank below for industry-specific and behavioral questions, as well as questions that you may want to ask during an interview (plus a few to avoid). Study the job description to anticipate questions related to the role. Print out a few copies of your resume on resume paper and have a padfolio ready. Prepare your business professional attire. Make sure your clothing fits well and free of tears, wrinkles, or stains.
During the interview
The goal of your interview is to find out if you have “chemistry” for a potential long-term relationship, and both parties want to find out if you are a good fit for each other.
Think of the ideal interview as an engaging conversation. Your role is to articulate how your skills, strengths, and experience can bring value to the organization. Ask the interviewers if you can take notes.
Watch your body language to show interest in the conversation and convey confidence. Be ready to back up your resume with further detail and speak concisely.
After the interview
Send a thank-you note to each interviewer within two days of the interview. Hand-written notes leave a stronger impression, but email is appropriate and faster. Customize your notes to reflect your conversation at the interview.
Reflect on your interview performance for opportunities to improve.
Case method interviews
Case interviews are typically used by consulting companies but are spreading to other industries. In a case interview, you are presented with a hypothetical, industry-related problem to address. There is no right answer; instead, the interviewer is evaluating your problem-solving, analytical reasoning, and interpersonal skills. This type of interview can be daunting and intense, but with preparation you can participate in a case method interview with the utmost confidence.
Refer to the case interviewing guide for more information.
Task/testing method interviews
Some employers may give you a task or test to evaluate your skills during an interview. For example, a task may be giving a live presentation during your interview so your employer can gauge your communication skills. A test may be quantitative in nature such as completing a set of accounting problems so the interviewer can assess your accounting abilities.
While you cannot know exactly what you will be asked in an interview, you be very thorough in your preparation by studying and anticipating questions based on the job description and company/industry research. Below are sample questions to help you prepare for your interviews. Schedule an appointment in Handshake to conduct a mock interview and discuss interview strategies with a career coach.
- Consulting questions
- Enterprise risk management questions
- Finance questions
- Health care questions
- Information Systems questions
- Marketing questions
- Real Estate questions
Bonus: Questions to Ask