Preparing for a Successful Job Interview

When it comes to an interview, you need to stand out from the rest by “going the extra mile.” I advise my clients to prepare and anticipate the interview process. Here are a few of my recommendations:

Understand the Process and Know Where You are Going

The interview consists of five distinct parts that reveal specific information about the candidate and the job:
• Introduction: Tell your story.
• Qualification: Review your education, certifications, and skills.
• Exploration: An examination of a job’s particular demands.
• Conclusion: Your questions and closing comments.
• Wrap up: Express your interest in the position and the next steps.
By paying attention to the process, you can better understand the flow of the conversation and assess the likelihood of your success.

Your goal in an interview is to put the interviewer at ease by showing you understand and can address their concerns. Some simple ways to achieve this are:

• Before you go to an interview, you must research the position.
• Compare your resume to the job description to see whether your background meets expectations, exceeds expectations, or falls short.
• Look at LinkedIn and Google for people who presently have the same title. See how their experience stacks up against yours.
• If your experience or training is insufficient, find out how and where you can go to get the training you lack before the interview.

Anticipate Concerns: Taking these extra steps will arm you with the knowledge to anticipate the concern an employer may have and give you a strategy for efficiently addressing them.

Prepare a List of Questions

Don’t hesitate to ask questions. Properly prepare your questions, write them down, and take them with you to the interview. Keep in mind that interviewers want you to ask questions because it shows them your interest in the job, your ambition and that you are career-oriented. Your questions should focus on the position and your long-term goals.

Interviewing is an art, and my goal is to make sure you prepare for anything that comes your way. If you need my assistance, advice or coaching on these and other interview skills, you can contact me at 818-389-1876 or info @

To your success!
Sean McCarthy
Jackson McCarthy & Associates, Inc.