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How to have a successful job interview

With military training, you’re always prepared on all things. You’ve been preparing for your military transition to civilian life. And you’re now prepared with your resume, your best tool in applying for a job. But having a captivating resume alone is not enough to make a good impression and land you on a good job. When you’re scheduled for an interview, you must be very well prepared in all aspects, not just your resume. Here are some things that you should do:

Be a Resourceful Researcher — Interviewers expect that you know a lot of things about their company; that’s why you are interested in applying for a job there. To satisfy their expectations and make a good impression, research online about their company. You can find a lot of information on their website, particularly on the “About us” page. You can also get some information on their social media sites. Then, tailor your answers to their questions later on from there. It’s a wise decision to be familiar with what the company does.

Review the Job Description — The hiring manager will check if you know what you’re applying for. If you don’t know the basics of the job description, how can they trust you to be able to perform the job if you are hired? Know the details of what they are looking for and match it to your military knowledge, skills, and abilities. This will help you have a successful career. 

Know your Resume by Heart — Most of the questions by the interviewer will come from what you’ve written on your resume. So it’s best to be familiar in all the things that are there. If you don’t, the interviewer will think you faked information just to make a good impression if you don’t remember the details. You may seek an expert resume writer to create your resume but be sure you review it and know everything that is written since it is your name on it.

List All Possible Questions — Research the most common questions interviewers ask in an interview. This really helps a lot because it will force yourself to be prepared to answer them. Sometimes the easy questions will be the ones that are difficult to answer under pressure. It’s best to make a list of all possible questions that the interviewer may throw to you then practice answering them with a friend. An example of an easy question that is actually difficult to answer is “What is your greatest weakness?” Of course, you don’t want the interviewer to think of you negatively so try to answer it in a way where the positive side of you will still prevail. For instance, answer that question like this: “I may be forgetful at times so I try to make a list of things to be accomplished in a day so I won’t miss anything.”

What’s Your Question to the Interviewer? — Before the interview ends, you will usually be asked “Do you have any questions?” It is advisable to be prepared to ask a question to show your eagerness to work with their company and make the interviewer remember you. If you answer, “None,” you’re out of the game! So, a good question will be: “What’s an average day like in this job?”

Prepare Printed Copies — Take a printed copy of your resume with you on your interview day in case the hiring manager has misplaced it; print the directions to the interview location in case something happens to your GPS; and print the list of your character references with their information to be submitted in case the interviewer requests them.

Dress to Impress — Choose an outfit for that day beforehand to see if you’ll feel comfortable and look impressive. Try not to overdo it, though. You would like to be seen as a professional and nothing else.

Make a Reminder — You may be so busy preparing for the interview that you forget the actual date, so mark the calendar and set your phone to remind you at least 2 hours before your actual interview time. This will give you enough time to prepare for your big day. 

A Good Night's Sleep Before the Big Day — Relax and get to sleep early to be refreshed on your interview day. You want to look good and be energetic to make a good impression.

This is your chance to let the interviewer know that you’re the best fit for the position that they are trying to fill. It’s not the qualifications alone that gets a person hired. The key is to stand out from the crowd and convince the interviewer that you have the strengths the job requires. And since you’ve been in the military, you’ll be the best candidate because you have the military discipline, hard work, and smarts to help an organization succeed.

By: Ritchell Thibodeaux

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