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Career Center: Interview Tips

The Basics

  • Be prepared
  • Have two or three good questions for the interviewer
  • Be yourself at all times
  • Remember: the interview is primarily for you to sell yourself
  • Be punctual

What is the interviewer looking for?
Regardless of the interview style used, the interviewer is looking for certain traits--benchmarks, so to speak, to compare you to the "typical" person who has been successful in that firm.

  • Personality
  • Verbal communication
  • Ability to be convincing
  • Self-confidence/poise
  • Assertiveness
  • Professional appearance
  • Motivation
  • Leadership ability
  • Understanding of the firm and the practice you're interested in
  • Extent of interest in a career with the firm/organization
  • Academic preparation

Things to Avoid:
Watch out for any habitual signs of nervousness (e.g., laughing, finger fidgeting, squirming, etc.). Everyone is nervous during an interview, but everyone can control the amount of nervousness he or she displays.

  • Don't be overly concerned with the possibility of rejection. Instead, focus on the possibility of getting the job and on what you can do for the employer.
  • Never be critical of a company or the performance of anyone employed there.  Above all, do not "bad mouth" a former superior.
  • Don't argue.  Sell yourself with confidence, but always keep the discussion friendly and open.
  • Do not show irritation with delays or interruptions--even if you are irritated.  Help the interviewer run a good interview, whether he or she is good at it or not.
  • Don't apologize for things you cannot change or are not responsible for (e.g., your age, education, or work history).
  • Don't lie or pretend. Don't be afraid to admit there is something you  don't know.  No one is totally knowledgeable.

Questions Commonly Asked by Interviewers

Questions to ask a staffing agency before applying for a job 

 

 

Career Center Office Hours

Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Career Resources

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Additional Resources

Spartan CareerLink for Students
Spartan CareerLink for Employers
SIGI 3 for Students

Contact Us

Sherry McAdams
Director, Career Center
Phone: 864-503-5393

Career Center
Library 203
800 University Way
Spartanburg, SC 29303
Phone: 864-503-5392 
Fax: 864-503-5931
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