Thursday, January 12, 2012
How are you presenting yourself?
Before The Interview:
Get to know yourself before entering the interview. You will perform your best if you can easily answer two questions:
1. Do I know who I am?
2. Do I know what I know?
By using these two questions as your guideline, you will stay authentic and natural. Bring up topics that are interesting to you and relevant to the interview.
For example, I started a sales phone meeting recently with an enthusiastic response to the question on the other end: “How are you today, Roshini?” I said: “I’m great. There should be snow on the ground where I am, and there isn’t. I’m running a marathon in a few weeks, and this really helps with my training. I couldn’t be in a better mood so I anticipate this conversation with you both to go outstandingly well!” The two people on the other end were so pleased for me that we talked about my upcoming race for the first few minutes of my call.
Running is my passion so I was authentic and positive—there was no better way I could have scripted to launch this sales call. Getting down to business flowed naturally and didn’t seem like a pitch.” I received a terrific follow-up e-mail within minutes of the call ending.
The introduction of an interview is the perfect time to stage yourself and your hobbies. When your interviewer asks how your day is going, bring up an activity you’ve been working on. Are you training for a marathon? Demonstrating your passion towards hobbies can be a great icebreaker, and relaxes the atmosphere. Once you feel more relaxed, you are ready to sell yourself!
Roshini Offers Her Top Tips for Interviewing:
1. Find your power outfit. When you’re confident in what you’re wearing, your best self will shine through. Always overdress, even if the place your interviewing is “business casual.” It’s better to look sharp!
2. Clean up your look. Men should be clean shaven. Women should have their hair bound back or controlled, and wear minimal makeup.
3. Be yourself, be genuine. Let your interviewer get to know the real, authentic you. If you are trying to act like a jokester just to make them laugh, it might seem funny for a while, but as the interview goes on, they will see it as fake and even dishonest. Not to mention, it's exhausting to act and be something that you're not.
4. Have current affairs knowledge. Throw out hot topics in the news or interesting local stories to strike up conversation. If you can tie it to the company’s industry that’s even better! Just being aware is helpful in case your interviewer asks you about the weather, stocks or sports. It’s embarrassing to be caught off guard.
5. Do an analysis on who’s interviewing as well as the company, if possible. Knowing a little bit about your interviewers at can certainly help in conversation! If you can ask questions about their past work experience and why they chose their university you win brownie points. It shows you’re interested.
6. Think less is more. If you just have that mantra in your head you will be more effective.
The Follow Up:
Of course thank you notes are an absolute must after an interview! A handwritten thank you is the best way to demonstrate you want the job, as it’s a much more personal connection than email. The key is to include details from the interview in the letter. For example, if you found out your interviewer loves dogs and serves on the Humane Society Board, is there a way to incorporate that into your follow-up? If one of your interviewers won an award in his area of expertise, perhaps you mention something about that in your follow-up communication.
You never want to fake anything or seem like you’re reaching out in your thank you notes. However, these personalized touches will showcase to prospective employers that you were fully engaged and listening during the interviews. After all, it doesn’t really matter what you know if you don’t know how to communicate it. This is especially important in leaving that last impression with your interviewers in order to get the yes. Secure a positive impression with a winning thank you note!
About the Author
Communicate That! She is a sought-after keynote speaker and commentator to local and national media on topics related to powerful communication for executives and politicians, business strategies for climbing the corporate ladder, and rehabbing celebrity images. Her background includes more than twenty-five years of public speaking and a career in television news. Roshini is also a licensed attorney.
As President of Roshini Performance Group, Roshini speaks and coaches high-profile executives and celebrities around the country on communicating powerfully within their industries and for the media. Roshini is an instructor at St. Catherine University where she teaches businesspeople at both the Leadership Institute and the Center for Sales Innovation about how to powerfully negotiate and influence. Roshini has become the go-to person for business executives, authors, athletes and politicos who want to make an impression — clients include Bridgestone Americas, Great Clips, Minnesota Vikings, Wells Fargo. Roshini also advises television news anchors and reporters as they move forward in their broadcast careers. For fun and to keep challenged, she runs with the Minnesota REDs. Visit her website at http://wwww.communicatethatbook.com/ for additional information. Follow Roshini on Twitter: @RoshiniR.