If you do not interview well, you most likely will not get the job. Most companies schedule multiple interviews with different people. Thus, it is essential that you are prepared and have done your research prior to your interview. Typically, the employer is interested in your answer to four fundamental questions. Does your background match the requirements for the job? Can you do the job? Will you fit in with the company culture? Do you want the job?

1. Research - Do your homework. Conduct a search on the web or go to your local library to obtain information about the company regarding its products or services, corporate history, news articles and financial performance. More knowledge can only impress your interviewer if utilized properly while no knowledge can only be perceived as a lack of interest.

2. Questions - Write down the answers to anticipated questions. Rehearse the response to these questions. Some typical questions are: Tell me about yourself. What are your five major accomplishments? Tell me what you learned from your biggest failure. What are your goals? Why should I hire you? How would your peers describe you? What would your boss say about your job performance? What is your current compensation and what compensation do you expect for this position? Effective interviewing is a two way street. You should have your own list of questions which will demonstrate your interest in the position and knowledge about the industry and the company. Build a rapport with your questions. Remember the company is interested in gaining from hiring you just as you are interested in being hired by the company.

3. Location - Confirm the time and location of the interview and arrive at least 15 minutes early. If a situation arises that you will cause you to be late, call the hiring manager and your recruiter immediately.

4. Attire - Dress appropriately for the interview. Men should wear a business suit. Women should wear a business suit or jacket and skirt. There is only one opportunity to make the first impression. Your attire should present a positive, sharp image.

1. Attitude - Be enthusiastic and confident. Smile. Maintain eye contact and sit up straight. Listen and answer the questions. Don't interrupt the interviewer. Be cordial to everyone that you meet in the organization. Every person that you meet can influence a company's decision. Visualize a successful interview.

2. Build Rapport - You should answer questions completely and thoroughly. Most questions require more than a yes/no answer. As you answer questions, point out your strengths and accomplishments. Provide concrete and definitive examples of your accomplishments. Use your own questions to gain a historical perspective on the company and the position and to find out more about the hiring manager. Discover the needs of the company. Utilize this information to expound on how you can make contributions to the company.

3. Close - Express appreciation for the interview. Ask for feedback from the interviewer on how your background, skills, and abilities match their needs for the position and re-emphasize how you see yourself adding value. Acknowledge a mutual fit and declare your interest in the position. Ask what is the next step. Do not be hesitant to close. The hiring manager wants someone that wants the position and is excited about it.

1. Notification - Call your recruiter immediately. Provide feedback on your evaluation of the interview. Declare your level of interest to the recruiter.

2. Thank you - Write different thank you letters to each person that interviewed you. Thank him or her for their time and consideration. You should describe how your skills and abilities or past accomplishments match the company's needs. Express your interest in the position.

3. Interview Review- Make notes about your interview concerning key points of interest from the company. You should draft questions that you have for the next interview and points that you want to emphasize in the next interview. Review these with your recruiter as a trial run.

Statistics show that if you accept a counteroffer from your current employer, the probability of voluntarily leaving in six months or being let go in one year is extremely high. As a candidate, you should remember why you wanted to go on an interview in the first place. Most of the time it relates to the company environment, lack of respect for your contributions, passed over for promotions, or salary reviews. If this is the case, your employer will question your loyalty to the company going forward thus exacerbating your reasons for considering leaving the company originally.

Review and rehearse with your recruiter the appropriate responses to counteroffers without burning bridges.

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