“Tell me about yourself”, “What are your strengths and weaknesses?”, “Tell me about a time you worked on a team.” Can you answer all of these questions with confidence in your delivery? If not, you may need to work on your interviewing skills a little before you step foot into that room to vie for that coveted internship. Using some of these tips below, you can help bring your A-game so every company will want you on their team.
Research- Nothing looks worse in an interview than not knowing anything about the position or company. You’ll often be asked about your knowledge of the company and its products or specific knowledge relating to the position. Nobody expects you to be an expert but going a little further than the homepage can do you some good. When I approach a new company to research ahead of an interview, I always take a top down approach. It’s critical to be able to answer the following questions. Who are the big players in the industry? What makes this company standout among its competition? What kind of a role does the position you’re going into play into the larger mission of the company? Most importantly, what key skills can you bring that make you uniquely qualified for this position at this company?
Build That Relationship- I often see students who are hyper-focused on getting through that half-hour interview in a small conference room where they have to answer only a few questions. The interview process is so much more than that, and it started before you accepted the offer to interview. This can be a huge advantage to you if you use it right. I’ve always found it key to seek out ways to get in front of people at your dream employer and get to know them. I always try to build that relationship with a recruiter or hiring manager through simply learning more about them. Interviews are just as much about what you bring as what they bring. Seek out opportunities to speak with representatives from the company. Whether it’s an Information Session or Career Fair, try to talk with recruiters from that dream employer so they can connect the name on the resume to you.
Thank You Note- The most important thing to remember is also the easiest to get right. After each interview, remember to send a quick thank you note to those you interacted with, who took time out of their day to speak with you. It’s important to personalize each one with something you learned or enjoyed talking with them about.
Using these steps, as well as scheduling a practice interview at the Center for Career Development, will help you be in top form for your upcoming interview and you’ll make sure that next time that company needs great talent, they’ll remember your name.