Nobody wants to be just another face to a resume passed between decision-makers during an interview. And we can do without the rehearsed answers to an overused list of generic interview questions. We’ve been through the interview process time and time again, but how can you spice things up and make the long-lasting impressions that help job seekers get employed? Here are some thoughts on the matter:
Of course, it’s essential to bring your resume to an interview, but what does it really say about you? And is it saying what you want it to? How does anyone really know you without having an actual conversation first?
A resume can be helpful if you can effectively highlight everything a company wants to see in their next hire, but that’s easier said than done. In this instance, working with a recruiter can be highly beneficial in helping relay your history, experience, and value to a hiring manager.
“The truth is, not all recruiters are equal.”
– Jerry Beech, gpac Search Consultant
These days, a resume might as well be a super-sized business card. Some are flashy and have a nice feel to them, but it’s still just a piece of paper. The magic really begins when you bring material that showcases your work or gives insight into the productivity and impact you had in previous teams and positions. Think about your proudest accomplishments throughout your professional career and the best way to present that information during an interview.
For most, interview prep can feel like auditioning for a part in a life-changing blockbuster film. However, memorizing frequently asked interview questions and your answers to them won’t help you stand out above the others applying for the same position.
Asking questions can express your interest in and eagerness to know more about the company that may be hiring you. So, instead of focusing on what interviewers may ask, think about what you could ask to get the most out of your interview. How much do you know about the hiring company’s culture? How many teams or departments will you be expected to work in? What’s their onboarding process like?
Having just the right answers can make or break your position in the interview process, but asking the right questions can help you decide if the role or company you’re applying to is even worth your time and effort.
Hopefully, before having an interview, you know whether or not you want the position. But there’s always a chance that you may be unsure or that new information about a company or their culture can sway you one way or another on accepting an offer. Asking questions is the best way to remove any doubt and clear up any uncertainty you may have about moving forward.
Though there’s probably no rule about putting your best foot forward in an interview, it goes without saying. What may be less obvious about putting your best foot forward is the lasting value it can provide whether you get the job or not.
Making a good first impression is excellent, but making a lasting first impression takes a little bit more effort, and there’s more to gain once that effort is put in.
For instance, a hiring authority that remembers your attitude and character from an interview, even if you weren’t offered the position, will also have you in mind when similar roles open up. An impactful first impression may even lead to companies referring you to their friends or network of trusted organizations that may be hiring.
Provide a positive, enthusiastic, and memorable first impression that has the potential to open doors and opportunities beyond what was initially intended in an interview.
With all this said and done, don’t forget what you’ve come to the interview hoping to gain. With the right kind of interview prep and practice, you can better control the flow and direction of the interview process. Perhaps even, to an extent, the outcome.
Feel free to take some of these ideas and apply them to how you prepare for an interview. And for more insight on the interview process from both ends, check out the rest of Jerry Beech’s episode on gpac’s podcast, The Howl.
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