You Landed an Interview—Now What?
You’ve filled out countless online applications, stalked a few (hundred) people on LinkedIn, sent a cold email or two and you’ve finally snagged an interview. Congrats! So, now what?
This is your opportunity to come out behind the screen that has truly taken over the application process and let yourself shine. It’s easy to let the virtuality of it all act as a comfort blanket, but being yourself in person (or over the phone) is where you should feel the most comfortable, confident and ready to be the bossbabe you know you are.
Don’t be afraid to ask the hard-hitting questions: I know it seems like you’ve gone to the moon and back already just to land an interview and the company has the upperhand. In reality, you’re equally interviewing the company as they are you, so don’t be afraid to ask THEM why they stand out.
Here’s a few go-to's:
What do you think sets XX apart from its competitors, both externally and in company culture?
What do you think makes someone in this position successful and why is this position currently open?
Do you have any reserves about my prior experiences that I can clear up for you?
2. Dress the part: It’s obviously hard to know the culture of a company before you’ve been to the office, but it’s always better to be overdressed than wish you tried a little harder. My go-to interview look always consists of classics like trousers, a button up or dress which I then complement with bold accessories that show my personality: a fun pair of heels, red lip or architectural earrings. This shows you’re taking the interview seriously but can bring your own flair to the position.
3. Always have hard copies: This can mean a few things depending on your industry. It could just mean having a few printed resumes on hand or actual work examples. For example, I work in fashion media, so I’ll also bring a copy of Kent State’s student magazine I edited as well as previous issues to visually show the changes I made during my time as editor. Even if I’m interviewing for a role outside of classic editorial, this helps the interviewer understand how my mind works and gives them a concrete aid to understand tasks/stories that they may not be familiar with themselves.
Below are quick tips that I’m sure you know, but in case you don’t or need a fresher, read ahead:
Ten minutes early is on time, on time is late: Back in the day when I was acting, a casting agency would send this out with each of their audition invitations; it’s stuck with me ever since.
Stalk everyone you’re set to meet with on LinkedIn prior
Google the company: read their website, look at their social, check out news coverage from third-party sources
Thoroughly understand the role you’re interviewing for and how it fits within their team/department dynamic. If it’s not clear, be sure to ask. It’ll help with how you answer questions.
Be positive, be confident and be yourself :)