Mid Career Consultations
Someone very bright (and in the interview coaching business) once told me everyone believes they are good at 3 things in life:
There are many, many great resources out there that can advise you on interview etiquette, best practices, common interview questions. And I believe they are helpful to a point.
The best advice you are going to receive is from a live conversation with your recruiter IF your recruiter has been working with this company for longer than 2 weeks, has a good relationship with the hiring manger, and wants to help you be successful; not just coach you on what to say.
For example, most every interview book out there will tell you absolutely, without a doubt, you should wear a suit to your interview. For those of us that have had the pleasure of working with some creative start-ups, especially here in Boulder, we both know that is not true.
My point is the best interview advice is going to be tailored to that specific client and even more so to that specific hiring manager.
Here are some general tips we are happy to share to help you learn from our past candidate’s mistakes.
Make sure you are well educated about the company you are interviewing with PRIOR to your first interview. (Common mistake: I’ll dig into the company if the first phone interview goes well and I decide I’m truly interested. You won’t make it past the first phone interview if you haven’t taken some time to dig in already.)
Refrain from wearing sunglasses inside any building, especially when you are walking in to a company where you are interviewing. Definitely take them off prior to walking into the reception area, let alone your actual interview. Secondary note: also do not wear them on top of your head, on the back of your neck or anywhere else visible on your body. Save your “coolness” for that first company barbeque.
Do not wear cologne or perfume. Shower ahead of time and don’t smoke right before walking into your meeting or during the entire car ride with the windows up.
Make sure your clothes are clean and don’t look like you just pulled them out of the hamper before coming in. A collared shirt is a pretty safe bet, male or female.
Males and Females: No one wants to see your:
Skin (there is a point where you are just showing too much whether it is summer or not)
Cleavage (ok, this one is mostly the ladies but I have also seen some pretty interesting v-neck shirts, gold medallions and way too much chest hair for comfort on the men’s side as well.)
Piercings and tattoos (sorry folks I truly believe in freedom of expression just as much as the next person but I have also seen way too much personal bias coming from hiring managers on this one as well. I guess the question is freedom of expression or getting the job and then expressing all you like.)
Do not even bring your phone into the interview with you. I know this will cause some short term anxiety but you can reconnect with your device after you are done.
Have something to take notes with. Have some intelligent questions prepared ahead of time (and these aren’t things that are covered on the website).
Arrive on time, better yet: 5 minutes early. 20 minutes early is TOO early. Yes, there is such a thing.
Give in depth answers to the questions you are asked diving into the actual technologies you have used in the past and project details that are relevant. Be very careful not to ramble on and on getting off topic. Be mindful of your interviewers’ time.
Be excited (if you truly are excited)! Don’t be afraid to tell your interviewer why you feel you are a good fit for the position and why. Tell them why you are excited about the role.
Follow up with your recruiter afterwards and let them know how it went.