President & CEO
Lainie Bennett is President and CEO of Millennium Personnel Corp., an independently owned and operated boutique administrative employment agency.
You finally landed the interview you’ve been pining for. You have multiple copies of your resume, cover letter and references on hand and feel ready to knock it out of the park. You’re dressed professionally and looking sharp. However, looking right is just the first step. Having a productive interview conversation is key to landing the job. You can walk the walk – but can you talk the talk?
First and foremost, never lie about your jobs and experience on an interview. Everything can be researched and easily found nowadays. It’s just a matter of time before that lie comes back to bite you and ruin your chances of landing the job. What you want to do is make sure everything you say is true and relevant to the job at hand. Share your qualifications that are relative to the position for which you are interviewing. If the job calls for a specific skill set, try to focus your interview conversation around that.
Furthermore, keep everything on a positive note. You’ll be asked about your biggest weaknesses. If you just simply state what your weaknesses are, you inadvertently inform the interviewer that you haven’t tried anything to improve them. When asked this question, speak about your weaknesses in the past tense and be sure to detail the steps you’ve taken to improve them.
On the same note, when asked about your previous employment and the reasons for separation, keep your answers positive. It is very easy to speak negatively about your former boss and company if the separation wasn’t mutual. However, any negative comment can put you in a bad light. No matter what the actual circumstances were for you leaving, saying anything damaging about your last employer makes you seem like a difficult person to work with, thus, jeopardizing your chances of getting the job. Plus, it’s a small world, and you really don’t know who knows who. You may be interviewing with a close friend of your former employer and never know it.
Do not volunteer more info than what is asked from you. Giving too much information too early will make the interviewer think that you are an employee who rushes through things to get the job done. Of course, you should answer all questions asked pertaining to the position. However, make sure to keep the interview conversation light, professional, and focused on the job at hand. Avoid going into any personal territory.
Lastly, show your interest in the position by asking the employer questions about the company and their plans for the job. This will prove to the employer that you are truly motivated and committed to the work.
If you have any questions about hiring, or if we can be a sounding board for your job search inquiries, please contact us at 212-244-2777.