The job interview can be one of the most nerve-wracking moments of your life. So how do you prepare for this important step in the job search? The following is some information to help you prepare for the job interview.

Interviewing 101 Handout


Elevator Pitch Handout

Interview Tips

  • Be on time. This means a 10-15 minutes early.
  • Learn the interviewer’s name and how to pronounce it. You should use Mr. or Ms.
  • Bring a spare copy of your resume, pen, and paper in a padfolio.
  • Expect to spend some time developing rapport.
  • Be aware of your non-verbal communication including eye contact and posture.
  • Nervousness is not a negative. Nervousness indicates that you are interested in the position. However, avoid nervous mannerisms, like tapping your fingers, playing with a pen, etc.
  • Do not exaggerate or lie.
  • Do not take over the interview. Answer each question and wait for the next question.
  • Be prepared for some personal questions, even some inappropriate ones. Some interviewers may not be aware of what they can ask, legally. Try to anticipate how you would handle personal questions.
  • Be sure you understand the question. Feel free to ask for clarification.
  • Do not apologize for lack of experience or weaknesses.
  • Be self-confident, but not over-confident.
  • Let the interviewer bring up salary.
  • Silence is not a problem. Feel free to take a few moments to think about an answer.
  • Emphasize what you can do for the organization. Employers want to know what you can do for them.
  • Do not try to give the answer the interviewer wants.
  • Always focus on the positive. Do not talk negative about previous supervisors, co-workers, etc.
  • Have a few questions ready. This demonstrates that you have taken the time to research the company.
  • Do not expect an offer on the spot. It may take a few weeks to process your application.
  • Be yourself. You do not want to get hired on the basis of something you are not. You want to be hired for who you are.

Commonly Asked Interview Questions

  • What do you consider your greatest strengths and weaknesses?
  • How would you describe yourself?
  • How do you think a friend or professor who knows you well would describe you?
  • Why should I hire you?
  • What qualifications do you have that make you think that you will be successful in business?
  • What do you see yourself doing five years from now?
  • Why did you select your college or university?
  • What led you to choose your field of major study?
  • What college subjects did you like the least? Why?
  • What college subjects did you like best?
  • How has you college experience prepared you for a business career?
  • Describe your most rewarding college experience.
  • Do you have plans for continued study? An advanced degree?
  • Do you think your grades are a good indication of your academic achievement?
  • What have you learned from participating in extracurricular activities?
  • What do you know about our company?
  • In what ways do you think you can make a contribution to our company?
  • What criteria are you using to evaluate the company for which you hope to work?

Questions You Can Ask an Employer

  • What qualities do you look for in potential employees?
  • What does it take to advance in your field?
  • What do you consider to be your organization’s three most important assets?
  • What do you see ahead for your company/organization in the next ten years?
  • Is this a newly created position or is someone being replaced?
  • How would I spend a typical day?
  • What is your anticipated timeline to hire for this position?
  • Can I provide you with any further information?

Career Resource Center

The Career Resource Center contains books, periodicals, and other materials related job searching, general career descriptions, how-to-books on resumes and cover letters, interview preparations, graduate school information, and career choice.  Stop by our office on the second floor of the Smith-Pendergraft Campus Center to check out our available resources.

Interview Attire

Career Services has a Professional Clothing Closet available for current students who need attire for job interviews, internship interviews, or classroom presentations. Professional attire available includes gently used business suits for men and women, button-down shirts, blouses, ties, and shoes. Access to the Professional Clothing Closet is FREE to all students by appointment only. Please call us at 479-788-7017 or email us at to schedule an appointment.

back to the top