Tag Archives: interviewing

5 Tips for After Your Interview

So you were invited to interview for your dream job! I’m sure you spent quite a bit of time picking out an outfit to wear and researching the company/position beforehand. After the interview, you think you did a pretty darn good job! What’s next?

What you do after the interview can make as much of a difference as what you do during the interview. Don’t miss these key steps to making a positive, memorial impression, and hopefully, getting a job offer.

1. Get Their Contact Information

The first most important thing you can do during an interview is asking for your interviewer’s contact information. Even if it’s awkward, you are meeting this person and you never know how your paths might cross in the future.

So, after interviewing, ask your contact for a business card. If they don’t have a card handy, ask for their email address and write it down.

2. Send a Thank You Email Immediately

A simple ‘thank you’ email can make a huge difference and differentiate you from other candidates. So many people forget about this one really simple last step, and therefore, the candidates that take the time to do this really stand out of the crowd!

The best way to follow up is to send an e-mail within 24 hours after the interview. Reiterate why you’re the best choice for the job and thank them for taking the time to interview you. Even if you aren’t interested in moving forward with that position/company, I’d still suggest sending a simple “thank you” email. You never know what affiliations that company has, or what contacts are in the interviewer’s network. This simple step may benefit you in the future.

3. Send a Thank You Letter

To show the interviewer how serious you are, utilize snail mail. While emails and phone calls can occasionally come across as somewhat cold forms of communication, handwritten notes are warm. In your note, thank them for their time and address a few things you discussed in the interview. Make sure to tailor the letter to each company.

Typically “snail mail” will take 2+ days to be delivered. This will bring their attention back to you, and give them an opportunity to recollect their thoughts regarding your interview and qualifications.

4. Keep Notes

After the interview, write down who you met with and the date of the meeting, what you talked about, what you learned, your impressions, and any concerns you have. It’s important to keep track and to stay organized with the contacts you made.

5. Call for a Status Check

Contact your recruiter! Ask if they can provide you with any feedback and/or coaching so you can fine-tune your interviewing skills.

We hope you can utilize this information in your job search! Check out The Temp Blog’s Coaching Corner next month for more tips & tricks.

 

Elliana Vaughn joined The Temp Connection team in February 2017. She currently serves The Temp Connection as a Recruiter and Sales & Marketing Coordinator. She can be reached via email at elliana@thetempconnection.com.

Video Challenge-You Need An Elevator Speech

People in an elevatorTHE CHALLENGE:
Email me a video of you giving your 30-60 second elevator speech. For the next few weeks, I’ll feature the best ones on The Temp Connection website, Facebook, Google+, and YouTube. Remember, no longer than 60 seconds. Email entries to: diana@thetempconnection.com.

You must have an elevator speech!

Imagine finding yourself in an elevator with the hiring manager for your dream job—and you don’t know what to say. Gasp! For five floors you wrack your brain trying to work up the nerve to begin a conversation. The elevator doors open. The hiring manager exits, never knowing that the perfect candidate was standing tongue-tied right behind.

It’s called an “Elevator Speech” because you only have as much time to make a great impression as it takes an elevator to go from the top of the building to the bottom. In Tucson, where there are only a few tall buildings, that’s not a lot of time.

An elevator speech is handy for scoring an interview, making a sale, gaining a prospect, selling an idea, getting a referral; attending a networking event…you get the idea. The elevator speech is almost as important as your resume and needs to be regularly tweaked to fit the occasion.

A quick Google search reveals myriad articles on how to write an elevator speech. I recommend writing a 30 to 60-second elevator speech. Traditionally, I’m wordy and get excited when speaking in front of people, so mine is almost 60 seconds.

Your speech needs to:

  1. Be concise, clear, powerful, visual, targeted, goal oriented, and have a hook.
  2. Tell a story.
  3. Grab the listener quickly.

Salisbury University has great advice on crafting an elevator speech, and they even include a worksheet. Check out the worksheet and the article, How to Craft a Killer 60 Second Elevator Pitch That Will Land You Big Business.

What your “Elevator Pitch”must contain:

  1. A “hook.” Open your pitch by getting the Investor’s attention with a “hook,” a statement or question that piques their interest to want to hear more.
  2. About 150-225 words. Your pitch should go no longer than 60 seconds.
  3. Passion. Investors expect energy and dedication from entrepreneurs.
  4. A request. At the end of your pitch, you must ask for something. Do you want their business card, to schedule a full presentation, to ask for a referral?

An article on Forbs.com, The Perfect Elevator Pitch to Land A Job, breaks down the writing process into nine easy-to-follow steps:

  1. Clarify the target.
  2. Put it on paper.
  3. Format it.
  4. Tailor the pitch to them, not you.
  5. Eliminate industry jargon.
  6. Read your pitch out loud.
  7. Practice, practice, practice!
  8. Prepare a few variations.
  9. Nail it with confidence.

Take the challenge! Email me a video of your best elevator speech, and you could win a chance to shine across social media.

How To Interview The Interviewer

How To Interview the Interviewer

Relationships and job interviewing are exactly alike. Both require two-way communication. Interviewing for a job should follow the same rules as getting to know that hot guy/girl across a crowded room—it usually begins with, “Hi. My name is….” And follows with polite questions and conversation. Or, depending upon your technique, “Come here often?”

I don’t recommend the latter.

“The chief ends of a conversation are to inform or to be informed, to please or to persuade.” – Ben Franklin

Be Yourself
Identify what is important to you. Figure out what you need to be successful on a job. If you work best in a quiet, contained, library-esque environment, you won’t want to work the concessions at Peter Piper Pizza. The Wise Job Search website offers an extensive list of questions to ponder before and during your job interview. Here are my favorites:

  • What kind of work environment suits you the best?
  • What management style enables you to do your best work?
  • Do you prefer a role with a lot of contact with others, or one where you work on your own?
  • Are you looking for an opportunity to be creative, or work within established guidelines?
  • How far are you willing to commute to work each day?

Be Involved
Never go passively into a job interview. From the moment you arrive at the interview location, begin your interview process. Make note of the surrounding area. Here are things to consider:

  • When you go into the building, what environment is presented?
  • Is it busy, noisy, friendly, comfortable, uptight?
  • How are you greeted?
  • Does the one welcoming you present as professional or friendly? Or, does the greeting committee look like they wish to be anywhere but there?
  • How long was your wait?

Be Nosy
Ask questions, ask questions, ask questions! Tailor your questions to reflect what is most important to you. People, all people, are naturally charmed when asked about themselves and what they do, and employers want applicants to ask questions. Asking questions shows interest in the company and culture, and demonstrates your interest in finding the right fit, too. Of course, you’ll need to be tactful and diplomatic when asking your questions. No sense in alienating your prospective employer. Be sure to ask questions that are open-ended, such as:

  • Describe the group I would be working with?
  • Where do you see someone successful in this role going next?
  • What personality characteristics tend to be most rewarded in this organization?
  • Would you say this is a very structured environment or not… can you give me examples?
  • What do you enjoy most about working here?
  • Tell me about your own path in the company.

Being yourself, being involved, and being nosy during interviews sets you apart from other candidates by demonstrating that you are thoughtful and a ready participant in the interview process. In addition, you will find the answers you need to make the best employment decisions. Interviewing your interviewer opens two-way communication and puts you in the position, as Ben Franklin said, “To inform or to be informed, to please or to persuade.”

What kinds of questions do you ask in interviews?

Does Age Matter?

We are all facing the effects of the “Big Reset” being thrust upon us by this particularly vexing economy, and this means that adapting and adjusting on every level is vital to success. Let’s face it; we live in a world of judgments and perceptions where everything, from fashion to finance, matters. And so, it follows that within the job-hunting arena, age matters, too. This is not a good thing, or a bad thing, or an unfair thing—it just is and should be faced pragmatically. So, how are we going to face it?

Just as there are definable passages in human development (infancy, childhood, adulthood, middle-age, and old-age), there are definable passages embedded within, “The Great Job Hunt.” There is an age-appropriate approach, and it’s all about the decades, baby.

Twenty-year-olds are worried about getting their foot in the door. During this decade, experience is limited, but it is an optimal time for taking career risks, since fiscal responsibility is low. This is a time of experimentation, when working for lower wages, interning, or even volunteering is a grand way to gain valuable experience.

Thirty-year-olds are becoming a little more focused in their career trajectory. This is the decade to focus your resume on showing job growth and longevity.

“Think about the next job on your resume,” said Elizabeth Lions, Human Resources Consultant and Career Coach. “Does it make sense in your career path? If it doesn’t, don’t make that move. Your resume tells a story.” (http://www.theladders.com/career-advice/job-search-in-your-20s-30s-40s-50s-60s).

By the 40’s, your career should show, not only growth, but also focus and meaning. However, because of skills and experience, you are now considered more expensive to employ. You need to convince prospective employers that you are worth it. The focus is now on “branding” yourself (http://www.theladders.com/career-advice/successful-career-planning-management).

The dream of retiring in your late 50’s and 60’s, collecting Social Security, and sailing off into the great sea of relaxation, hobbies, and travel is quickly morphing into the nightmare of retiring, perhaps, but because of that pesky, economic “Big Reset,” having to flail your way back into an age-slanted job market. It’s scary. In order to combat the age stigma, 50 and 60-year-olds need to remain current on all fronts: Technology, skills, vernacular, appearance, attitude.

Invest in yourself; learn new and current technology. Re-imagine your transferable skills; update your old ones. Lynda.com offers practical tutorials that really work, from MS Office to the latest software and business skills. This is the time to believe in yourself, and to convince others to believe in you. After all, you have decade’s worth of practical and valuable experience to offer employers.

Is your conversation up to date? Do your words “date” you? Do you know what Facebook is? Are you on LinkedIn? While you may have zero interest in actively pursuing social media, social media is a major currency of the modern job market; it is employment cache. Get plugged into the vernacular of social media so that you can speak intelligently and be engaging to a hiring manager who will, more than likely, be your child’s age.

Be your own best advocate and package appropriately. A very big concern to employers for hiring candidates in the 50’s and 60’s is health. During these decades, health issues can be costly to employers, so focus on being and presenting a healthy package. Be fashion-forward on interviews. Sit up straight, make eye contact, and smile. Amazingly, statics reveal that as people age, they smile less. Smiling is associated with youth. Pull out the Crest White Strips and smile!

Finally, you have years and year’s worth of real-world knowledge.  You may even have advanced degrees; you know a thing or two. Don’t be a Know-It-All. It is vital to always remember that no matter your age, an old dog can learn new tricks! Get excited about learning new things, be a good listener, and be enthusiastic. Present this image and your prospective employer will be excited about hiring YOU!

Interviewing Tips from Tina-The One Who Has Seen It All

I work at the front desk of a reputable staffing service and you would be amazed at what I see! Some people who come in to interview wear short-shorts, tight and revealing tops, baggy shorts and shirts that I would have put in the recycle bag a long time ago! You don’t want to wear anything that you might wear while out clubbing on a Saturday night. You want to come in like the job belongs to you!
First impressions are very important. The clothes you wear might send a negative message to the first person you come in contact with or to the person you are interviewing with. It can be viewed as a major reflection of your character and deflect from your true talents. Treat your interview with the staffing coordinator/recruiter the way you would with any other job interview. It is important for you to make a great impression and stand out from others so that you are considered first for great opportunities.

A few tips:
Make your jewelry simple
Clean clothes should fit, not baggy, too short, tight or low cut
Conservative colors work best
Skirts/dresses 3 inches above the knees or longer
Hair, neat and tidy
Refrain from wearing strong perfumes; some people have allergies
Be prepared: Nothing is more embarrassing than not having what you need in a job interview. Be sure to bring a current resume, two pieces of ID, and a list of references with current contact information. Make sure you have looked at the website of the company you’re visiting. And please, don’t take your children to the interview when visiting the staffing service. Make prior arrangements to have a friend or family member care for them while you are away. Good luck and happy interviewing. Comments appreciated.