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Interview Tips

What Employers Want to See:

Employers evaluate many things during an interview. The following characteristics influence an employer's final decision on who to hire:

Does your appearance convey pride in yourself and an ability to do the job?

  • Dress - Is your attire at least one step above what one would wear on the job?
  • Grooming & Hygiene - Do you project a clean, neat image from head to toe?
  • Manner - Is your behavior and attitude polite, friendly, confident?
  • Paperwork - Is your application and resume neat and complete?

Can you be counted on to do the job?

  • Attendance - Will you be at work regularly?
  • Punctuality - Will you report to work on time and return from lunch and breaks on time? Will you complete duties in a timely fashion?
  • Reliability - Will you accept responsibility, follow rules, and learn as much as possible about the job?


  • Do you possess the skills or the potential abilities to learn and perform the job
  • Are you willing to learn new skills?
  • Do you have experience or related experience?

Interview Killers:

People will tell you what you should do in an interview, but they forget to point out what you shouldn't do. Make sure you avoid the following mistakes.

A job interview is your chance to leave a positive first impression that is critical in getting a job offer. Many candidates walk in and out of interview rooms leaving memorable negative impressions no matter how good their resume looked.

Any of the following can kill your interview:

  • Come late to the interview.
  • Be intolerant and show strong prejudices against others.
  • Don't articulate yourself clearly, have a weak voice and use poor grammar.
  • Be unwilling to start at the bottom; expect too much.
  • Refuse to work in a team.
  • Don't show appreciation for interviewer's time.
  • Don't tolerate any criticism.
  • Don't give enough details about experience and past employment.
  • Immediately ask how many vacation days or holidays you'll have.
  • Show ignorance of the company history and achievements.
  • Condemn past employers and mention how your boss was mean to you.

Are You Ready?

The Day Before the Interview

  • Make your travel plans for getting to the interview; know exactly where you are going and to whom you will be speaking.
  • Buy your ticket or fare for transportation, fill your car with gas, or re-confirm other transportation plans.
  • Make sure that you have several clean copies of your resume to take with you.
  • Decide what you will wear and check that it is clean, pressed, no missing buttons, etc.
  • Confirm childcare plans and any other plans which leave you depending on someone else. Have a back up in mind in case you need it.
  • Try to learn two or three facts about the company and its products so you will sound well-informed at the interview.

The Night Before the Interview

  • Check the weather forecast. Will you need an umbrella? Should you wear a coat?
  • Do as much of your morning preparation for both yourself and your family as you can.
  • Do something to relax: take a warm bath, exercise, etc.
  • Have a light dinner (no alcohol) and get to bed early.

The Day of the Interview

  • Avoid too much coffee or sugar at breakfast.
  • Brush your teeth and put on deodorant.
  • Remember to take directions to the interview, the name of the person you are meeting, your resume, and other relevant items with you.
  • Give yourself plenty of time to get there, get comfortable, and find the restroom.
  • If you feel nervous, try breathing in to the count of ten and then exhale on the count of ten. Try to increase the count.
  • Observe your surroundings; get a feel for the work place.

Pre-interview checklist

  • Confirm your attendance either by telephone or in writing
  • Name and title of the interviewer
  • Telephone number of the company
  • Pen and paper
  • Appearance OK? Fresh? Pressed? Shoes in good shape? Not over-done?
  • Know why you want the job?
  • Reasons why the company should consider you?
  • Mental frame of mind? Relax.
  • Ready with a smile?
  • Rehearsed answers to possible questions?
  • Directions to interview?
  • Do you know where to park?
  • Extra money and a watch?
  • Copies of your resume?
  • Reference list/letters, portfolios, transcripts, etc?
Our Partners


"I would like to express my appreciation for the effort and professionalism that the people in the Employment and Training One-Stop Office have demonstrated assisting me to secure employment. The individuals in the one stop office have made considerable contributions in the way of developing my resume, approach and interviewing skills. The facilities are as well, very helpful and are exceptional in the resources that are provided. This office is an excellent resource for those who are marketing their skills in the job market."

- Aaron

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