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The Clothes Make the Job Seeker Make sure your interview clothes are clean and pressed

a few days beforehand. Also, make sure you have a neutral colored umbrella on-hand in case of rain. Don't Forget Your Resumes! Make good-quality copies of your resume on a nice grade of paper. Take more copies than you will possibly need just in case. tore the copies in a folder where they will stay clean and unwrinkled. !rgani"e your portfolio, tear sheets, professional reference lists or any other papers you think your prospective employer would like to see. Make sure your purse or briefcase is stocked with everything else you#ll need$ A working pen %no pencils&', a notebook, breath mints, a comb, the umbrella ( mentioned and some tissues. Practice Makes Perfect )ike most things, people get better at interviewing with a little practice. *edicate one night prior to the interview to a mock +,A. -ou can set this up with a friend or conduct the interview yourself with a list of frequently-asked interview questions and a mirror. *on#t panic if, during the actual interview, you are not asked any of the questions you practiced. The point of practicing is to .warm up. to the process of answering questions on the fly. Do Your Home ork pend at least two days before the interview researching the company. Take notes. Memori"e important facts. A little preparation goes a long way. A couple of hours researching the company and practicing answers to interview questions can give you that e/tra bit of confidence you need to ace the interview. eal the *eal 0ith trong 1eferences A good reference confirms and elaborates on the information in your resume. More important, he gives positive feedback on your skills and e/perience. 2ormer managers, clients and colleagues make the best references, because they have first-hand knowledge of your job performance. (f you#re new to the workforce, you may want to ask a professor or teacher to serve as a reference. Avoid using friends and family as references as well as people who have known you less than one year. Most importantly, make sure you#ve asked permission before listing someone as a reference. (n this case, the element of surprise won#t work to your advantage. (f you e/pect an employer to check your references, it#s a good idea to call the people you#ve listed and forewarn them. That gives them time to think about what they#ll say. (t also gives you an opportunity to prepare them by describing the position and pointing out your relevant e/perience and skills. urviving the 3hone creen Many recruiters have been trained to be sensitive to timing issues, so if their call finds you at an inopportune moment, follow these steps$ 4/press you enthusiasm$ .That#s great news& (t#s so nice to hear from you,. 4/plain briefly that .now is not a good time for me to talk,. 0rite down %and confirm' the recruiter#s phone number and name as well as a good time to return her call, Thank the recruiter sincerely for his or her call$ .( really appreciate your call. ( look forward to talking to you soon.. 3repare 5eforehand (f you#ve arranged to call a recruiter back for a phone screen, take some time to prepare by practicing the following$ tandard interview questions$ 0hy would you like to work for us6 0hat is your greatest strength6 7reatest weakness6, etc. A brief summary of your background as well as any difficult topics that are likely to come up %a lapse in your work e/perience, for e/ample', A response to any salary questions. %( usually recommend giving a range, rather than a hard number. 8eep in mind that if your range is drastically outside the target area, you will most likely not reach the interview stage.' !ther Tips Take the call in a place where you will not be interrupted and where you can speak freely. (f you#re in a room with a T9 or radio, turn it off.

Make sure your answering machine greeting is professional. !ne recruiter ( interviewed for this series recalled a message that went like this$ .-o& -o& -o& Ain#t :ome& 5ye&. ;eedless to say, that person was dropped from consideration. ome people suggest that your voice sounds stronger if you speak while standing up, but if this feels uncomfortable to you, by all means sit down. The most important thing here is to be rela/ed and comfortable. According to folks who talk on the phone a lot, this makes you sound more positive. Don't Talk too Much Being long-winded during an interview makes you sound chatty and unprepared. Avoid this common blunder by keeping your answers to about 60 seconds or so during an interview (unless the answer really calls for a lot more detail). ou can perfect this by practicing answers to typical interviewing !uestions ahead of time. "ot only will you sound intelligent and polished# but you$ll also be less nervous knowing that you were prepared. Words Don't Always Tell The Full Story! %uring a &ob interview# what you convey non-verbally may be &ust as important as what you communicate verbally. 'nterviewers typically take note of a candidate$s non-verbal cues as they evaluate their skills and !ualifications. (acial e)pressions# hand gestures# posture# and tone or inflection of voice all indicate a candidate$s level of confidence and overall interest in the role. *rior to an interview# have someone you know ask you +mock interview+ !uestions# then have them offer feedback on any non-verbal habits that may be distracting or unprofessional. Never Turn Down an Interview! ,here are many reasons as to why you should never decline an interview with a potential employer or recruiter. "ot only do you have the opportunity to practice your interviewing techni!ues# but you never know what kind of valuable contacts you may develop from the encounter. -aybe the current &ob opening isn$t .the one for you.# however# a few months from now# the ideal position could become available. -aking favorable impressions and networking with various people is an important part moving your career in the direction you want. Let Me Introduce Myself /hen someone asks an open-ended !uestion# such as# +,ell me a little bit about yourself+# nothing can lose a listener$s interest faster than an over-detailed# rambling response. A well-prepared and practiced introduction is likely to capture an employer$s attention and leave them wanting more. 0se descriptive statements which relate to your skills and achievements. /hether in an interview or &ust networking# a good initial presentation will set the stage for a positive and pro-active conversation. The Interview is a Sales rocess ,he key is to sell yourself by highlighting not only the knowledge# skills and abilities you could bring to the company# but also your accomplishments. As you answer all interview !uestions# make sure you are in a sales mode. 's the interviewer (the buyer) getting the information they need from you (the salesperson) to make an informed decision to buy from you (offer you the &ob). %on$t forget to close the sale by asking for the &ob1