Tips for preparing for the 1st round within the interview process

March 27, 2017

The hiring process has become more sophisticated with personality assessments, panel interviews and “working” interviews, making the process more intimidating and lengthy. My experience working with professionals and providing guidance through the process with the following steps has increased confidence and led to higher success rates in helping professionals receive a job offer:

  1. Confidence is key!

I always remind professionals that if they are not confident in their capabilities, then you can’t expect an employer to be confident to hire you for the opportunity. How did we build confidence?

  1. Create a plan!

Confidence stems from being prepared by identifying your strengths and the value you can bring to the opportunity, researching the company and understanding their goals and/or challenges.

  1. Maximize your network.

Prior to the interview, review the LinkedIn profiles of the hiring managers and Executives and look for common denominators to help break the ice during the interview to create a connection. Take it a step further and reach out to anyone (in your direct network) who has worked for the company or knows someone at the company you’re interviewing for to gather more information about the environment. This will provide a path to ask interview questions that will pertain to the environment to ensure it’s the right match.

  1. Practice interviewing techniques or answering the tough questions.

I believe practice does create perfection. The worst case scenario during the interview is to be caught off guard and unable to answer a question. Practicing with someone or recording yourself answering interview questions can aid you in working through nervousness, reveal “filler” words (“Ummm”), tangents and discombobulated sentences. Role playing or hearing yourself via a tape recorder is never fun, however, it often uncovers areas requiring improvement.

  1. Come prepared!

If there is an application process, request the application to be emailed in advance so you can spend adequate time completing the application prior to the interview.

  1. Ask about the interview process.

Anytime you’re working with a recruiter or HR professional, use the 3rd party scenario to your advantage. Ask questions to develop expectations for the interview process.

  1. Can you describe the interview process?
  2. Will I be taking any type of assessments?
  3. Will I be meeting everyone separately or in a group setting?
  4. Can you provide the titles of the individuals that I will be meeting with to further prepare myself?


Interviewing is a skill that is developed over time with practice, preparation and constant improvement.

Setting yourself up for success is the first important step in the process!

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