How Did You Do?

You read our blog on Interviewing and you just secured the interview for a job you really want. You show up prepared, dressed to impress and ready for anything. You have reviewed your resume and practiced your responses.

And as you walk out, you have absolutely no idea of how it went…

Here are a few ways to decipher.

* Was there a positive verbal response? It’s an easy indicator to intently listen to the words that the interviewer uses. If they are responding with comments like: “that’s great”, “please, continue” or “please, tell me more”, you are definitely on the right track.

* What was the body language of the interviewer? A head nod, a smile, or leaning forward can all indicate that things are going well. The reverse: arms are crossed, checking their watch or responding to their phone or emails can all indicate that this might not be the job or the right fit for you.

* Were you interrupted? The interviewer cutting you off or interjecting to redirect your response can be a sign that the interview is not a complete success. Make sure to listen to the question and keep your response specific and to the point. Not staying on message is near the top of the list on why people don’t get to the next step. Some employers may take the time to dig for the response they are looking for, but most will just move on and you will have lost the opportunity to score points on that topic.

An interruption while you are answering a question shows that the interviewer either does not like your response and isn’t that interested in hearing from you.

Another point to remember, don’t anticipate what the interviewer is going to ask, wait to hear their entire question before responding. This week I spoke with a hiring manager who told me of a recent round of interviews in which candidates had anticipated the question before he could finish and began answering. This is improper on several levels and it ended the candidacy of these otherwise qualified individuals.

* Did you ask questions? If offered the opportunity at the end of the session to ask a question, make sure to do so (have one ready). If offered the opportunity to inquire about the job or the company and you decline, you are signaling that your interest is not very high in the company or opportunity.

* Were you told about next steps? If not, there is a good chance that there won’t be any.

* Were you asked about your timing? If you are asked about your availability to begin the position, you can bet the interview is going well.

* Were you asked to meet anyone else in the company? In most companies, you will have to meet more than one person before an offer can be made (either a supervisor or someone from Human Resources is typical). If you complete your first interview without mention of anyone else in the organization, you may not have made the best of impressions. If you are introduced on the spot and/or given names of those that you will meet with at some point in the process, you are on the right track.

* Did they try to sell to you? Any effort that is spent on trying to convince you that this is the right job and the right company for you by the interviewer is an excellent sign that you are the one that they want.

* Did your time go over that which was specified? If the interviewer gave you a specific time frame for your meeting and your interview extends beyond that stated period it is an excellent sign.

* Did they ask for your references? Just like any next step, this is a good sign. Even better is if you hear from your references that they have been called. If they weren’t interested in you, they would not spend the time following up.

Hope this was helpful. Good luck on your job hunt!

David Lammert

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