Ten Preparations to Make before Interviewing
1. First of all, know who the company is and what they do. Youíll be asked, ďHave
you heard of us?Ē and it is better to be able to respond in the positive. You can
use the Internet to find out something about them. You look unprepared if you
havenít even taken the time to look them up.
2. Make sure that you can remember what you did on your last few jobs. It doesnít
look good if you are asked what the project was on a job you worked on recently and
you canít even remember what the project did, or the name of it (been there).
3. Study up on the skills that you know that they are looking for. You may well be
questioned or even tested on those skills. Sometimes itís difficult to remember much
about something you did two years ago, but youíre going to have to. Youíll have to
brush up on it again if you hope to get the job.
4. Make sure that you are dressed well but not too flash. A suit is good, but a
Rolex watch and big gold rings arenít. It goes without saying that an open-necked
shirt with your chest hair hanging out will not look good. The same goes for women
with open-necked shirts (except for the hair hanging out part).
5. Donít set out for your interview in a Porsche or a sports car. If you have to,
borrow a friend or spouseís more sedate car. If youíre a contractor, you may earn
more money than your prospective boss but donít shove it in his face.
6. Donít wait to leave home till five or ten minutes before you have to. You donít
want to be late. The first rule of salesmen is to never be late. And you are selling
yourself, your services and your capabilities. On the other side, donít show up too
early or you may appear too eager.
7. Find out from the agency that sends you if they have sent someone else there for
an interview and ask them to find out what the interview and the interviewers are
like. The agent will be willing to help you even if they have put someone else in.
They are also likely to have spoken to the interviewers and can give you an opinion
8. If you know someone at the company, contact them to get the rundown on the
company and the people interviewing you. If you donít know anyone, you might put out
an email to your contacts to see if they know anyone inside the company.
9. Donít go out drinking the night before, or to a restaurant that has food that
might affect your presence. Youíre likely to be nervous and might have had to rush
to get there on time. You never know what is seeping through your pores and into the
interviewerís nostrils in the small enclosed room where you are being interviewed.
Some non-intrusive aftershave or perfume might be good.
10. Convince yourself that you are the best person for the job and that they will be
lucky to get you. Your confidence will come through. You will get this confidence
through thorough preparation for the interview. Thereís nothing more irritating than
failing an interview by not being able to answer something that you should have
known Ė especially if you have been out of work for a while.
Extra tip: Use the Internet to get as much background information as you can.
Remember IBM, Sun, Microsoft, etc all have sites. Donít do your Internet
investigation the night before the interview. You might find more information than
you can cope with, or you may have an ISP problem and get nothing at all.
About the Author: Gerry McLaughlin has fulfilled every role in Software Development from Trainee Programmer through Systems and Business Analysis, Project Leader and Manager, Systems Manager and Chief
Information Officer with a department of 80 people. Tens of thousands of IT Contractors visit www.ITContractor.com each month to keep themselves in touch with the market.
Gerry McLaughlin has fulfilled every role in Software Development from Trainee Programmer
through Systems and Business Analysis, Project Leader and Manager, Systems Manager and Chief
Information Officer with a department of 80 people. Tens of thousands of IT Contractors visit
www.ITContractor.com each month to keep themselves in touch with the market.