You only have one chance to make a great first impression

An interviewer has just one objective: to decide whether or not to make you a job offer. While the interviewer will examine your work history and educational background, your strengths and accomplishments will also be important criterion. He or she is also interested in evaluating your level of motivation, values, attitude and personality. In other words, the interviewer is seeking to find out if you’re the right person for the job, what your potential is for promotion and whether or not you will fit into the company environment.

Bayne Consulting & Search, Inc. has compiled these insightful tips to help you prepare for your next face-to-face or telephone interview:

  • Dress for the job you want, not the job you have.
  • Listen as much as you talk – both are important. Nothing blows an interview like dominating the conversation. Be mindful of the length of your responses.
  • The purpose of a first interview is to clearly demonstrate what you bring to the table and how your skills and knowledge can benefit the company. Your goal is to secure a 2nd interview!
  • Be prepared to discuss your direction with the company. Go prepared with carefully-planned, thoughtful questions.
    • Where do you want this position to be performing and what does that look like 6 and/or 12 months from now?
    • How will I be reviewed?
    • What would this person have achieved at 6/12 months to have exceeded expectations?
  • If money or benefits come up in a first interview, it is best to defer answering this until a later interview, focusing instead on the position, how you will fulfill the role, and understanding the company. If everything aligns, the money piece will as well.
  • Things to bring: a copy of your resume, a notebook and pen, copies of references (if you have them), and the location and phone number of the person you’re meeting with in case you’re running late.
  • Arrive no earlier than fifteen minutes before the interview (but no later than five minutes prior to the interview). Allow adequate time for traffic, parking and a last minute appearance check. If possible, scout out the location the day before the interview to avoid last minute problems.
  • When asked why you left your last employer, NEVER speak negatively. Be pleasant, honest, and positive.
  • Send a thank you note! Email is sufficient and allows for a timely follow-up.

For telephone interviews:

  • Be in a quiet location where you can give your undivided attention.
  • Be conscious of your energy – stand up if you can! Project and engage!
  • Avoid sitting in a hunched position.
  • Ensure that you will have cell reception/connectivity

If you feel your interview has gone well and you’d like to move forward in the process, communicate this and ask for information about the next step!

NOTE: All information on these pages are property of Bayne Consulting and Search inc.  Any unauthorized review, copy, use, disclosure, or distribution is prohibited.


Know Yourself:

  • Can you honestly visualize resigning from your current position?
  • What are your strengths?What are your weaknesses?
  • What are your short and long-term goals?
  • Can you impartially evaluate yourself in terms of the position you seek?
  • Formulate responses by asking the question: “Why should they hire me?”
  • Remember that you’re there to sell yourself and secure a job offer.

Research the Company:

  • Utilize the Internet to review annual reports, trade magazines and newspaper articles.
  • Use LinkedIn to learn more about the person/s you’re meeting with. Perhaps you’ll find some commonality!
  • Know the company’s products and services.
  • Be prepared to tell the interviewer why their company is attractive to you.