Pitch Yourself: Interview Tips & Workshop Recap

You’ve sent in your resume to that job/internship you want. They finally get back to you and tell you that they’d like to bring you in for an interview.

You’re nervous but excited too, so you eagerly tell them “yes.” You’re trying to plan everything out but your mind’s racing too fast and you can’t think.

Well, don’t worry, because if you missed NAAAP’s interactive interview workshop on Thursday or forgot everything you learned about preparing for an interview, we’ll give you the key points.

NAAAP Temple President, Zilong (Z) Zhao, talked about his experiences when applying for three Fortune 500 companies and how he successfully got the jobs. He laid out how and what to do to ace an interview.

How?

1) Research the organization.

  • Look up their annual reports (especially the CEO’s Letter to shareholders)
  • Conduct informational interviews with people in the organization

2) Compare your own skills to the job requirements.

3) Prepare your responses and stories.

4) Practice, practice, practice.

What?

1) What’s your “real GPA”?  It’s your Genius, Passions and Achievements!

  • Know what your “GPA” is!

2) Be confident:

  • Firm handshake
  • Smile
  • Good posture
    • “Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are | Amy Cuddy | TED Talks” video
  • Eye contact
    • Cheat: Look at the bridge their nose instead of their eyes
  • It’s normal to be nervous, just breathe
  • Sound of confidence
    • “How to Project Confidence – Interview w/Roger Love, Celebrity Voice Coach” video

3) When answering a behavioral question, always answer using the S.T.A.R. method.

the-star-method

SITUATION: Provide context and background

TASK: Describe the problem and challenges

ACTION: Explain what YOU did and how

RESULT: State benefits, rewards, and the outcomes

*If you can, also include what you learned from the situation.

After Z finished his presentation and answered all our questions, we put our newly acquired knowledge to the test. We had three mock-interview rounds with each other wherein everyone got a chance to be the interviewee and the interviewer. Interviewees were given instant feedback by the interviewers, gaining experience and fixing obvious mistakes. Being an interviewer, students learned firsthand what kind of answers worked best.

 

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