Have An Interview But No Time To Prepare? Do This!
You get the call, and they want to schedule your interview for tomorrow. You work full-time and have no time to prepare as much as you’d like. It’s tempting to wing it, relying on your common sense and confidence but, at the minimum – make sure you cover these prep tips:
Double check the day, time and address of the interview. We’ve all done it, mixed up days and times – thought it was one location but it was another. No room for error here. Double check your notes and confirm, then put the address in your GPS before you start on your way.
When you received the call, did they give you a name to ask for when you arrive? If they did, make sure you know that name, first and last. Going on memory can start the interview off on the wrong foot when you ask for a “Catherine,” but can’t remember the last name, AND there are more than one employees with that name. I think I have a great memory too, and hey, it happens. But you don’t want that senior moment making an appearance at your interview.
Bring a portfolio or folder, (to keep copies of your resume as well as paper to write notes), and a pen. And yes, double-check that you have a pen, (and that it writes). Who doesn’t carry a pen with them, you ask? Making this assumption and heading out the door without checking means you might find yourself sitting in front of the interviewer rummaging through your bag, portfolio, or suit jacket as the interviewer watches, hopefully, amused but possibly slightly irritated. Preparing on the front-end ensures you keep the focus where it needs to be in the interview — on you and the job. It’s just one of those things, right or wrong. These seemingly small misgivings can paint you as forgetful, disorganized and disrespectful of the interviewer’s time.
Conduct some research on the company where you are interviewing. At the minimum, understand what they do, manufacture, or represent. Know where they are located (U.S., international), headquartered, and how many offices and employees they have. If you have time, do a Google search for any business ventures, mergers or gains that have made the news.
Lastly, on the “at least do this” list, think of questions to ask the interviewer as the interview is wrapping up. Most likely you’ll be asked the infamous, “Do you have any questions for me?” question. Your inquiries might be clarification on anything you’ve heard during the interview or why the position is available. You can ask if there will be a formal training session or when they are looking to fill the position. If the interviewer does not mention it, asking when you might hear a response regarding next steps shows you are excited and interested in the position.