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Preparing for an Interview

An interview is a screening process in which you have the opportunity to learn more about the organization while the interviewer has an opportunity  to determine whether you are a good match for their organization.  There are several interview formats: 
Screening – to determine whether you meet the minimum qualifications. 
One-on-One –   usually a key person evaluating your ability to do the job
Panel – a group interview conducted by three or more department representatives.
Peer group – a group interview with potential co-workers evaluating “fit”.

The Behavioral interview is a very popular type of interview.   This type of interview is baesd on the premise that past performance is the best predictor of future performance.  You should be prepared to “tell your story”, so you will want to:  

  • Analyze the position.  What skills does the employer require?
  • Evaluate your own background to identify skills and experiences related to the job objective.  Be prepared to tell interview stories to illustrated specific activities or tasks, what you specifically did and what resulted.    
  • Be prepared to provide examples of occasions when results were different from expected.  What did you do then?  What did you learn?  
To frame your responses, describe “your stories” using Situation, Task, Action/activities, Results.  STAR will help you give complete responses and specific examples of your behavior.

There are usually several parts to any interview:

  • Establishing rapport – greeting one another, getting settled, social exchange
  • Sharing/evaluating information – heart of interview – what does the candidate bring?, why interested in position?
  • Information on position/company – responsibilities outlined, value to organization shared  
  • Questions – candidate has opportunity to ask questions. 

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