Past IssuesMarch 09, 2015
How to 'Ace' a Follow-up Job Interview
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How to 'Ace' a Follow-up Job Interview
By Jimmy Sweeney, President of CareerJimmy and Author of the new, Job Interview "Secret"
The first interview is over and you're breathing a sigh of relief. One down and hopefully another to go before being offered the job. Such an experience is both exciting and nerve-wracking. Then the call comes in. You're invited to return for another round of questions and some further discussion.
You recall a friend telling you that at the second interview level the competition is that much tougher than the first, and the questions you'll receive will be more challenging to answer. This time the employer wants to make sure you're the most qualified of all candidates who've applied.
That means preparing for the new interview even more carefully. Consider doing a little more networking and inquiring from people who have had a similar experience. Perhaps you've had contact with someone at the company who you can use as a resource or ally in your job search. If possible, talk to a human resources representative who may be willing to give you feedback on your progress. Or if you know an employee at the company, he or she might help you prepare for the next interview and even share in a 'practice' session.
Never Hurts to Ask...
Feel free to ask your contacts what they consider to be the three key elements you should be aware of before entering the second interview. Assure them you're not looking for an unfair advantage or inside information - just support for making wise choices on what to prepare for. If you know the name of the person who will be interviewing perhaps you can gain some insight into that individual's personality and interviewing style.
Once you've reached the second job interview, keep your cool. Remember how well you did the first time. Something you said or did won you this current opportunity so you don't want to change your approach. Answer questions in a friendly yet forthright way, citing an example to back up the response whenever you can.
For example, if you're asked about your problem-solving ability, avoid a general response such as "I'm pretty good at restoring tranquility after chaos." Instead share a specific incident: (example) "During a power outage at my previous place of employment when all computers went down, I gathered the employees in my department together and led a discussion on how to remain calm in a crisis so that everyone benefits. I received the Employee of the Year Award for having turned the tide at the company during that time."
Also, follow the lead of the interviewer. By the time you've gotten to the second interview, you will likely be meeting with a high-level company executive. The interview may be less formal than the first, allowing time for informal conversation between the two of you so the employer can get to know more about you on a personal level. You can prepare for that by being ready and willing to share a few anecdotes and experiences from your life outside the office. Keep in mind that the interviewer will be hiring an individual, not just a professional.
Jimmy Sweeney is the president of CareerJimmy and author of the brand new "Secret Career Document"job landing system. Jimmy is also the author of several career related books and writes a monthly article titled, "Tough Times Job Tips."
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