I get it. It’s been a long year. You’ve either finished your senior year of college during one of the most unprecedented times in our history, or you’re looking to transition into a new role that’s more aligned with where the world is going.
While the world is changing in front of our eyes, the fundamentals of interviewing and breaking into the workforce have not. At LaunchSource, we’ve helped thousands of career-seekers, from recent graduates to individuals looking to transition into a new career. Along the way, we’ve noticed with some candidates, a few things might be missing when they connect with hiring managers + recruiters.
Here are 3 non-negotiable interview questions that you must prepare for before the first phone screen or zoom interview. Answering these questions correctly will help you ace the interview and more importantly understand if this business it’s a good fit for you. Do your research ahead of time, and be ready for these:
- Tell me about yourself?
Don’t let this question catch you off-guard. This question is not about your full life history, where you were born and what high-school you went to. The best way to prepare for this question is to prepare a quick pitch about who you are. Stay focused and give 2-3 sentences about your career path and how you ended up in this interview, applying for this job. Your goal is to give the interviewer enough curiosity to excite him/her to learn more about you throughout the interview. Here’s a 6 minute video that was published by Harvard Business Review that we think can be helpful.
- “What research have you done about [insert company name]” or “What excites you about working at [insert company name]”
Come on folks — if someone is taking the time to interview you, you should at minimum visit the company’s website, but even that is just the minimum requirement. Ideally, you’ve taken 10 minutes to read a relevant press release & read or watched a few of their customer stories / case studies. You should understand the value they bring to their clients. You will be selling that value every day, if you get the job.. Interviewers are checking to see if you have a high-level understanding of what the company does, and more importantly if you would be a good fit to represent it. No need to feel like you are a technical expert. Referencing a youtube clip on the company or one of their blog posts will impress the interviewer to move you to the next step in the process.
- “Do you have any questions for me?”
— I think there’s a misunderstanding that asking questions may show that you don’t understand the role or have passion for the company. We’ve seen this hesitation hold many great candidates back. Please always have questions prepared or ask questions based on what you heard during your interview. This initiative tells the interviewer that you are interested and engaged with the role or the company. Ask about the company’s long-term goals. Ask what makes the best sales people on the team so successful? Ask your interviewer what their career goals are in relation to the company’s mission. These are just a few examples. Questions are an important way to show that you’ve done research on the company, and have authentic interest in representing the brand and can make an impact.
In the Great Re-Hiring be conscious that hiring managers are talking to dozens or hundreds of candidates. Interviewing candidates that aren’t prepared to answer these questions is exhausting. The world is changing for us too! We are adjusting to new ways of working, new changes in culture, product and more. We want to hire you. We understand that this is nerve-wrecking and it’s been a tough time, but help us help you by being ready to answer these3 basic questions. Doing so will give a hiring manager, team, or recruiter a clear picture of your capability & interest. In case you missed it earlier, LaunchSource has helped hundreds of individuals just like you break into the fastest growing companies to start careers that are meaningful and filled with growth. If you have more questions on how we can help you through the interview process apply or connect with me via LinkedIn here and we’d be happy to help!