Every year, the folks at Harris Poll and CareerBuilder conduct an online survey of 2,600 hiring managers and human resource managers. When asked about the most unusual things job hunters have done during their job interviews, the managers recalled that… One candidate asked to step away to call his wife to ask her if the starting salary was enough before he agreed to continue with the interview. Another candidate asked where the nearest bar was located. A candidate brought his childhood toys to the interview. A candidate ate a pizza he brought with him (and didn’t offer to share). A candidate asked interviewer why her aura didn’t like the candidate. A candidate invited interviewer to dinner afterwards. A candidate stated that if the interviewer wanted to get to heaven, she would hire him. A candidate ate crumbs off the table. A candidate said her hair was perfect when asked why she should become part of the team. A candidate sang to a song on the radio playing overhead. A candidate bragged about the fact that they were in the local newspaper for allegedly stealing a treadmill from an older woman’s house. A candidate put on and took off her sunglasses repeatedly.
Of course, everybody gets nervous during a job interview. But, the best way to reduce your stress is to prepare for it. Here are three questions to think about:
Who is the employer you’re interviewing with? What are they known for and why do you want to work for them?
What does the employer need? Read some help-wanted ads and learn which skills and duties the job requires.
How can you help the employer? Explain how your skills and abilities match the employer’s needs. Talk about the projects you worked on and the achievements you earned.
To paraphrase President Kennedy, “Ask not what the employer can do for you. Show what you can do for the employer.”