There are several "must-do" behaviors to follow when interviewing for a job. Dressing appropriately, showing up on time, and being polite come to mind.
And there are many things you don't need to do. Of course, none of the following are a substitute for skills and experience, but these can certainly help put your candidacy over the top.
- Smile. Yes, smile! In a full time job, you're spending 2,080 work hours per year with your boss and coworkers. Sure, you need to factor in overtime and deduct vacation days and holidays, but generally speaking, that's how many hours your manager and peers would spend alongside you. Smiling is a simple gesture which conveys friendliness, openness, and positivity, and often translates into likeability and may convince a hiring manager you're a good person to spend time with. Show those pearly whites.
- Bring extra copies of your resume. Human resources may have given your interviewers a copy of your resume, maybe not. Bring extra copies just in case - you'll look prepared and ready. Also, this is a good chance for you to present a version of your resume which you've tailored for this specific interview, rather than one which was pulled from the company's applicant tracking system.
- Send thank you notes to everyone you meet. This is a dying art; very few interviewees send these anymore. Sending a note (email is fine) will reinforce that the position for which you interviewed is front of mind, demonstrate your orientation toward action, and provide another touch point for you to sell yourself. I've seen well-placed notes push candidates over the top. It's an easy way to make a positive impression. Why waste the opportunity? Some interviewees feel like it's kissing up – it's not. It's both an act of courtesy and an opportunity to sell yourself.
Scott Singer is the President and Founder of Insider Career Strategies Resume Writing & Career Coaching, a firm dedicated to guiding job seekers and companies through the job search and hiring process. Insider Career Strategies provides resume writing, LinkedIn profile development, and career coaching services, including a free resume review. You can email Scott Singer at firstname.lastname@example.org, or via the website, www.insidercs.com.