Following on from last weeks post on How to Send A Resume to Small Business, this week we are taking a look at the interview process. We were lucky to have 5 girls who all interview very well, but in my time in pharmacy we had some shockers. Here is my pointers on the right way to interview for a job.
Job Interviews The Do’s and Don’ts
Your Interview Starts When You Send In Your Resume
Your resume is my first impression of you. If it doesn’t have a cover letter attached, you come across as unprofessional, if it is full of spelling errors, you are immediately discounted for my administration position. Grammatical errors are not so huge with me, unless they are glaringly obvious. If the position was advertised on Facebook, be careful how you are tagged. Be polite in your dealings with the company, even when asking questions on Facebook.
Phone Manner is Very Important
When you have applied for a job, expect a call about an interview. When the phone rings, do not answer with a simple “Hello”. Show your professionalism right from the moment you answer the phone. “Hello, Nicole speaking”, is perfect! Think about it, there is a limited amount of time your potential employee is able to get to know you and if you are right for the job. This begins from the initial contact, and that first phone call, is the very first time you are likely to have spoken to that person. Always best to leave a lasting good impression.
Be on Time
There are only a couple of reasons why being late would be acceptable, and none of these are acceptable without a phone call to advise your employer, BEFORE you are late. I can recall a lady coming to a pharmacy interview 10 minutes late. A decision was made to give her a trial period, and she was late every single day. This is the impression you are giving your potential employer right from that first meeting.
Presentation is everything. I do not suggest going out to buy special clothes for your interview, presenting clean and tidy, in a professional manner is fine. Please iron your clothes, why would an employer give you a job with a uniform if you cannot present well? For ladies, keep make up to a minimum, hair neat and tidy, preferably away, or at least off your face, and don’t be too heavy handed on the perfume, and for the gentlemen, wear deodorant, and don’t come in your dirty work clothes. This next sentence may be cause for uproar, but as a person with several tattoos, I am still an employer who prefers not to notice yours on the first meeting. Having a tattoo will not stop you from getting a job with me, but honestly, I prefer for them not to be glaringly obvious. Please consider, if I hire you, you are going to be the face of my business for the life of you job, I would like you to be able to fit the profile of my company.
It is completely normal to be nervous at job interviews, often you will find the interviewer is also feeling rather normal. Take a big deep breath before you walk into the interview and try to relax, if you can’t just remember we have all been in your position before, we understand. Interviewing well is not hard to do, eye contact, clear speech, little fidgeting, well thought out answers and great listening, will have you interviewing like a pro. Interviewers have a little trick called the pause, designed to let you potentially ramble and reveal more of yourself than you would like. Be comfortable in the silence, be confident you have answered the question and let it sit. If you are the type who fills in the silence, no problem, just be cautious about what you say.
In our recent round of interviews, one of our ladies was unable to attend the interview at the time I had scheduled for her, she communicated clearly the reason why, and we were happy to reschedule. Employers want to know you are honest, especially when it is with good reason. For us, this actually gave this potential employee extra points as we appreciated her taking a risk, and being honest. Don’t use this honesty as a reason to run down past employers, this is a red flag for anyone thinking of employing someone. This is your chance to show the potential employer the best of who you are. If you feel the need to share an issue you had in a past job, be sure to state the facts, be clear and concise and careful not to present it as a complaint.
I had an interesting comment from a Facebook follower last week, who thought they were missing out on jobs they interviewed for because they were too friendly. I am a big believer in friendly, though this should not be confused with relaxed or casual. Interviews should not be relaxed or casual, they should be professional and friendly is fine. Obviously interviews are workplace dependent, and by this I mean, when you interview for an office position, that is how you present, if you are interviewing for the local music shop, then you present according to the place of employment. Personality is important, don’t be afraid to show who you are. The job being the right fit for you is just as important as you being right for the job.
Do you any tips to add? Had a job interview, or given an interview recently? What colour do you wear to interviews?
Linking up with Essentially Jess for #IBOT