It’s All About Context When interviewing, keep in mind that there’s a time and place for everything. In other words, the initial phone screen is not the time to ask for a company car. So let’s take a closer look at the stages…
The Initial Phone Screen Referred to here as the “Interest Building Stage”, this is where it is determined whether the basic requirements are met. Factors that may prevent future engagement include:
WORDS OF ADVICE: Have a good attitude. Stick to the basics. Remember that your only goal is to get to the phone interview.
Phone Screen Continued… Phone Screening is essentially a filtration process. Never expect to be hired as a result of a phone screen. The screeners job is to ensure that only those with the right potential make it to the next stage. Tip: With an applicant to job ratio of greater than 6:1, making a match can be like panning for gold. If you feel you’re not a fit, end the conversation expressing interest in the company albeit not for the particular position.
Telephone Interview In this “Curiosity Stage”, your training, experience, and interest are confirmed by the hiring manager. To prepare for the conversation:
Do your homework on the company
Have your own questions prepared for the interviewer
Be able to articulate why you are interested in new opportunities
Be able to answer why you believe you would be a good fit for the company
Set the expectation to move forward in the process
Telephone Interview Continued… THE MAIN PURPOSE OF THE TELEPHONE INTERVIEW IS TO GET INVITED IN FOR A FACE-TO-FACE INTERVIEW Questions you may be asked:
The First Round Interview This round of interviews is used to determine your “present compatibility. You will typically meet with your potential manager and team members. These questions should be answered by the end of the interviews:
Can you perform your duties in the environment?
First Round Continued… What do you think the goal of the First Round of interviews is? Do you see a pattern? WORDS OF ADVICE: Believe it or not, companies want you to make it through THEIR interview process. If you make it through, they can trust their decision to hire you.
Second Round Interviews We are calling this the “future compatibility stage” because it is normally the interview with corporate leadership. In this stage the corporate leadership is only looking for one answer. Point A Point B Where they are Where they’re going Can you help them get there?
Second Round Continued… At this stage they know you can do the job. The question is, how long will you last? WORDS OF ADVICE: Be mindful of signals that you can’t commit for the long haul. Even something like an extra long commute can work against you. Know the company’s expressed vision and take ownership of it. If you’re hired, you’ll have to anyway.
The Final Interview It’s down to you and one or two others. Now the company wants to know what it is going to cost them to bring one of you on. TIP: Your dollars are going to have to make sense to the employer. Work with them to create a mutually beneficial deal. How you negotiate is part of the interview.
Final Interview Continued… We are calling this “The Proposal” stage. By now all expectations should be clear for both parties. The only step left is for the company to “pop the question”. Don’t derail your chances by:
Preparing an offer is a big decision. Treat it like one. They are still watching you.
The Offer With all expectations laid out and confidence established, the next stage is to confirm the agreement. Just remember the interview isn’t over yet.
The Offer Continued… The company wants this process to end as much as you do. Your selection took a lot of work. No one wants to start the process over again. Don’t let an offer get away from you by:
Trying to renegotiate the offer at the last minute.
Being untruthful at some earlier stage in the process
Playing the offer against another one/Holding your cards
Assuming that an offer gives you the “upper hand”.
Remember that you still haven’t had your first day.
The Trial Period Ultimately an interview process is designed to protect a company from making costly hiring mistakes, so their process doesn’t stop when you sign the offer. Knowing this you should: