Gap in Employment History? Don’t Worry

Employment Gap

Gap in Employment History? Don’t Worry
A concern we commonly address with our clients is how to handle a gap in employment history. The reasons are numerous why you may have gap and while it could pose some challenges there are a few key things to remember.

Be Clear and Straightforward

There is no need to bend the truth if you are trying to explain to a potential employer why you have a gap in your employment history. If you decided to take 6 months off to travel, tell them that. They will probably be interested to learn more. If you had a baby and took maternity or paternity leave, let it be known. Most adults have kids and can appreciate the attention required for newborns. Did you take time off to pursue a hobby? Let it be known, you are demonstrating that you are dedicated to a passion and you can transfer that passion to a new role.

What If I Was Laid Off?

If you were laid off, keep things upbeat and focus on the positive. Give the most concise explanation possible for you being laid off and move on. Attitude is everything. Employers want to hire someone with a positive attitude that can be effective in a new role. Exploit your positive self and be upfront about the positive impact you can have in a new role.

Show Your Involvement

Whether you were laid off or took voluntary time off, you should strongly consider using a portion of your non-working time to stay involved in some way. Study current industry trends, work on obtaining am industry certification, take a college course to expand your knowledge and give you a boost of confidence, read lots of books. You might be surprised; an employer may put a lot of value on your active involvement not working as you may bring a fresh perspective to their organization.

Get Yourself Prepared

The more time you spend preparing to re-enter the job market the better your chances of success. Get your resume ready. There are a number of formatting techniques that can skirt around an employment gap and focus more on your effectiveness and positive qualities. Consult a Certified Professional Resume Writer if you have any doubts. Properly preparing for job interviews can go a long way towards your success. Work with friends, family, or an interview coach to go over tough questions, such as addressing employment gap, so you feel confident answering the questions.

If you still have any doubts, just keep in mind that there are many people who’ve been in the same situation as you who are now successfully employed. Stay positive and invest the time and resources into yourself that you deserve.

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Power Writers USA wants to know what you think of this, and other blog articles we post.  Your career change is unique and PWUSA is here to help you along the way with Resume Writing Services, Cover Letter Writing, CV’s, LinkedIn Profiles Updates, and more.  Contact us now for a free consultation and resume evaluation!

7 Tips to Get Shortlisted for a C-Level Position

C-level interview

We write for a lot of professionals who are entering a C-level role for the first time as well as seasoned executives looking to explore new opportunities.  In either case this is a great article which offers useful tips to get noticed during your job search.  

Original article click here.

Landing a C-Suite role can be the ultimate challenge for many seasoned executives, with the number of potential roles narrowing the further one climbs to the top. While many leadership styles, experience levels, and personal traits vary from one C-Level executive to the next, there are several key characteristics and activities that the majority of successful C-Suite share which their success can be attributed to. If you have C-Suite aspirations, here are our top tips to better position yourself for when your next C-Level opportunity arises.

  1. Be willing to take on new challenges…with enthusiasm: When it comes to C-Suite candidates, hard work definitely pays. Those who set themselves apart in the workplace as being willing to take on new responsibilities, particularly those that no one else is prepared to do, will help to establish themselves as having true leadership potential. It is important to appear energetic, proactive, enthusiastic and above all, punctilious.
  1. Be prepared to move laterally: In today’s business environment, C-Level executives are expected to demonstrate an increasingly broad range of business skills, from finance to strategy. It is now essential for hopeful C-Suite executives to have a deep understanding of metrics, margins and their company’s financial health. If your current role or career path has not allowed you to develop or demonstrate a wide variety of business skills in a multitude of environments, it might be worth considering a lateral career move before attempting to move up to a C-Level position. Smaller or similar size roles that add to your credentials can have the power to lead to bigger opportunities so it’s important to think about the big picture when taking your next step.
  1. Position Yourself for Good Timing: If you are hoping to stay at your current organization, it is vital to critically assess the likelihood of a C-Suite opening becoming available. If the C-Level position has recently been filled by a popular, successful and relatively young executive, you could be forced to wait for a long time for the position to become open. Be realistic about your potential future opportunities, and consider your options if the timing looks like it might not be in your favor.
  2. Be Able to Demonstrate Your Impact: Being able to measure your tangible impact on your current and previous organizations can be instrumental in securing your future C-Suite role. You must be able to provide facts and figures to show how your efforts have improved your company and how you have been able to achieve high calibre results in high pressure environments.
  1. Be Prepared to Make Tough DecisionsWhen entering a leadership position, you will be expected to make difficult decisions, under pressure, that are not always popular, while simultaneously maintaining the respect of the team. In order to reach a C-Level position, you need to showcase this level of decision making in order to demonstrate your ability to get things done and meet business goals. Top C-Suite executives are often characterized as being proactive, aggressive and efficient.
  1. Understand the Importance of Cultural Fit: Executives should be mindful to never underestimate the importance of cultural fit. C-Suite executives are supposed to set the tone for their teams and for the organization, so if you are not in sync with the company’s culture, it is unlikely that you will be selected for upcoming C-Level positions.
  1. Be Open and Vocal About Your Ambition: Transparency is key to getting on the C-Suite shortlist. Without the support of those at the top, it is difficult for executives to rise above their current position, so make your ambitions known in order to gain their trust and support. Voicing your C-Suite aspirations can be a sensitive topic, but it is possible to broach the subject in a way that expresses honesty and humility. Articulating your ambitions to those at the top also has the added benefit of allowing your superiors to let you know the present situation and the achievability of your C-Suite goal.

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Power Writers USA wants to know what you think of this, and other blog articles we post.  Your career change is unique and PWUSA is here to help you along the way with Resume Writing Services, Cover Letter Writing, CV’s, LinkedIn Profiles Updates, and more.  Contact us now for a free consultation and resume evaluation!

 

7 Keys To A Successful Job Search

Standing out

The proper preparation, dedication of time and resources, and a clear focus can have a huge impact on the success of your job search and career ambitions.  We’ve found article below is a helpful resource that can greatly make your job search efforts more effective.

Original Article by Nancy Collamer for Forbes Click Here.

7 Keys To A Successful Job Search

I’m always trying to keep on top of the latest career trends and recently read through the mother lode: The 2012 white paper published by the Career Thought Leaders Consortium. It’s full of useful tips, strategies and ideas for job seekers and I want to share my favorites with you.

The report summarizes the key findings of the consortium’s annual Global Career Brainstorming Day, an international, multicity event that brings together nearly 100 career professionals — including coaches, resumé writers and college career services professionals — from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. “What’s consistent every year is the very fast pace of change,” says Louise Kursmark, co-director of consortium and one of the co-editors of the report.

Here’s what the experts said are seven keys to a successful job search in today’s competitive environment:

 1. Keep your resumé short and succinct.

Despite reports of its impending demise, the experts said a resumé is still very much an essential tool of the job search. But hiring managers (and the computers they use to sort through resumés) are in a rush. So you need to format your resumé to be read quickly and in small bites. These days, a typical resumé is scanned for just six to 10 seconds, often on a mobile device.

Eliminate filler words, use numbers to quantify your impressive results (such as “boosted sales 83 percent”) and include relevant keywords that appeared in the job posting.

Limit your contact information to just one email address (old-fashioned AOL, no; contemporary Gmail, yes), one phone number and your LinkedIn profile URL.

 Residential addresses aren’t needed, although it can be helpful to list your region (for example, New York Tri-State), so the employer knows you’re located near the open position.
2. Create a portfolio of job-search documents.

Want a way to distinguish yourself from the crowd of applicants? According to the Career Brainstorming Day pros, many job seekers are supplementing their resumés with collateral leadership briefs, blogs that establish their robust online professional identity and, among senior-level managers, one-page executive summaries.

3. Consider hiring a coach to perfect your video interview skills.

More employers are relying on Skype for long-distance and initial screening interviews. As a result, more job seekers are using coaches to help them excel in video presentations.

4. Dive deep into LinkedIn.

Over the past few years, using LinkedIn to find work has gone from a good idea to essential. “Having a sharp LinkedIn profile may be even more important than having a great resumé,” Kursmark says.

Nonetheless, the experts said, all too many job candidates fail to fully embrace this tool, especially older job seekers. To maximize the use of LinkedIn, engage more frequently with your LinkedIn networks. One of the best ways to do this is to actively participate in LinkedIn’s industry and interest groups.

Find relevant groups by going to your LinkedIn home page, clicking on the Groups tab and search the “groups you may like” or “groups directory” tabs. Then join a few groups and post links to interesting articles, participate in discussions and share helpful resources. You will become known as a go-to resource and improve the likelihood that you will get noticed by recruiters, referral sources and hiring managers.

5. Use Twitter and other forms of social media to attract the attention of employers who are hiring.

According to the white paper, “employers will move from using external recruiters to an internal hiring process that will depend heavily on identifying prospective employees through their online presence and through referrals of existing employees. Personal websites, social media presence, development of subject matter expertise and a well-defined personal brand will be the requirements for gaining the attention of prospective employers.”

6. Limit the amount of time you spend on job boards.

As Next Avenue has noted, job boards are one of the least effective ways to get hired. The Career Brainstorming Day experts said it’s generally only worth applying for a position through a job board if your resumé matches 80 to 85 percent of what an employer asks for in a posting.

Job seekers continue to be frustrated by computerized Applicant Tracking Systems that scan applicants’ resumés for keywords. “This finding underscores the importance of direct, targeted search with networking as its core component as the most important method for finding a job,” Kursmark says.

To maximize your chances for success using job boards, focus on smaller, regional and industry-specific job boards, as well as aggregator sites, like Indeed.com and Simplyhired.com.

7. Start your search sooner rather than later.

The hiring process has been growing longer, with more steps and delays between the time people apply for jobs and receive offers.

It helps to approach a search as though you are in sales: keep building your network pipeline,don’t let your momentum flag and expect to hear “no.”

All is not doom and gloom, though. The report says career professionals are finding “growing demand for workers” and that businesses are worrying about losing managers and other key talent. I hope they’re correct.

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Power Writers USA wants to know what you think of this, and other blog articles we post.  Your career change is unique and PWUSA is here to help you along the way with Resume Writing Services, Cover Letter Writing, CV’s, LinkedIn Profiles Updates, and more.  Contact us now for a free consultation and resume evaluation!

Top 10 Things to Do Before You Change Jobs

Prepare to change jobs!

As the workplace seemingly continues to increase in competitiveness it is becoming very important to take the time and resources to be fully prepared before you make the career change you may be thinking of.  This article shares some excellent pointers on what you need to do to make your transition a successful one!

Original article click here.

In today’s world, individuals will change careers on average 7 times more in their lifetime, compared to only a couple of decades ago – and this rate is rising. There is more choice available to us – especially for those with talent, drive and ambition. Currently the support that we tend to find is really limited. It’s also pretty generic – maybe some careers advice from your school, uni or MBA school. Otherwise not much support until you are really senior in an organisation – and even then whether it is effective or not is debatable!

What results is a combination of lack of control and a cycle of movement from one unfulfilling job to another, or getting stuck at a ‘dead end’. However – do not fear – you do not need to stay in this ‘rut’. New horizons could be just around the corner..

So – you want to look for a new and the right role. This can be challenging, difficult, lonely, and sometimes stressful. You might want to consider getting someone to ‘walk the path’ with you and help you get clear about what your options are, what you want to do and how to get there can be hugely valuable. It is even more helpful when you know that the person accompanying you has been involved in this process before on many occasions and is a real expert. So if you work with someone to help with your career change look at their work and life experience to make sure they know what they are on about!

Right – so you are ready to change careers and want to find that right role. In order to succeed bare in mind the following tips:

1. Invest in yourself

This journey is important – so give yourself time to work it all out. You will need a significant amount of thought, consideration, time and investment in order to make this change smoothly and to make it the right career change. There are many key stages and turning points to consider so take the time to do it.

2. Get Clarity

Without real clarity about what you want to do or how to get it, achieving any sense of fulfilment or being in control of your future will be very difficult. Therefore it is really important to work on getting clear about what your central goal is and how to achieve it. If you want to learn about the different ways to do this then feel free to drop us a note.

3. Create an action plan

Simply knowing what you want will not ensure that you get it. You need to be clear about your plan of action and how to carry out what you have specifically designed for yourself. Get clear achievable steps in place. Outline it so that it is broken down into steps that you can work through towards that bigger goal. Reward yourself and be proud of yourself as you get through each stage of your plan.

4. Focus your energy on the task

Making a change and finding the right role is not always an easy task. It can be tough, tiresome and long. You need to stay really focused and be efficient around where you put your energy and effort to get the outcome you want. Make sure that you are in control of the key elements in your world and are able to drive forward with the career and life of your choosing. You will need perseverance and determination to help. Being smart about how you spend your time is crucial.

5. Understanding your strengths

Get to know yourself better. Identify what your key strengths are. What are you really good at? What do you enjoy that you are also good at? What skills have you learnt? What are you naturally inclined to do and be better at? Make sure that you get right to the core of it. The more you know yourself the more confident you will become and the better you will be at identify the right role for you and projecting yourself in order to get it.

6. Ignite that passion

Without real passion for a role – it will be difficult to get. Even if you do get it – you will find it difficult to maintain and grow within and beyond it. What you want here is the right role. This means something that you are truly passionate about. It might take a bit of experimenting to find what ‘floats your boat’ – but it will be worth it when you have found it.

7. Know your boundaries

Being clear about what works and what doesn’t work for you in order to be happy can be groundbreaking. It sounds simple but so many of us do not actually take the time to work it out. In each different work situation – we may have different boundaries. By being clear about what they are and then communicating this clearly to others and staying true to what is important – will make a huge difference. This impacts work and your personal settings.

8. Manage and improve relationships

This is important from all aspects. If you learn to manage your relationships effectively you will be able to control the process and transition. You will be able to manage your exit smoothly from your current or old role. Understanding where your old boss is coming from and the impact you have on him/her – and how you interact could really influence how you leave a job. How you get your next job and keep it may also rely heavily on your ability to manage relationships well.

9. Leverage your connections

Learn how to network and harness your connections effectively. This does not mean bombarding people you do not know with emails or adding everyone you can find to linkedin. Neither is this picking up as many business cards you can at a networking event and calling that person part of your ‘network’. Real networking is about getting to know people. You need to work on identifying and getting to know those who can help you along your way.

10. Rid yourself of blocks, fears and insecurities

All of us have them at one stage or another. Many of us keep them for years. However, do not let them stop you. If you are afraid – that is ok – just do not let it take over and control what you do or do not do. If something is blocking you from moving forward – take the time and action you need to confront it, deal with it and resolve it. This does not have to be done alone. Find support from those around you. Get support from a professional if it is a deep personal issue that is troubling you. If you do not deal with it now – it will keep blocking you in different ways throughout your career and life. Once you have worked through the blocks – you will be so much more energised, comfortable, confident and free.

Those are the 10 pieces of the pie that you must do before or as you start your journey and change careers. Each step requires some work, time and thought – but they are important if you really want to make it work. There might be a lot to do – but you are not alone and you CAN do it.

Author: Nisa Chitakasem is the founder of Position Ignition

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Power Writers USA wants to know what you think of this, and other blog articles we post.  Your career change is unique and PWUSA is here to help you along the way with Resume Writing Services, Cover Letter Writing, CV’s, LinkedIn Profiles Updates, and more.  Contact us now for a free consultation and resume evaluation!

Tips to Successfully Interview for a Job Promotion

Job Promotion

Great article sharing how you can prepare for your job promotion interview, what to do and say during the interview and what to do after your interview.  Best of luck out there!

Original article click here.

Are you being considered for a promotion, but have to interview to get considered for the new job? What’s the best way to handle an interview for a job promotion? What can you expect when you’re interviewing with a company you already work at? How can you ace the interview and get promoted?

What is a Job Promotion Interview?

A job promotion interview is an interview for a promotion or a different job at your current employer.

Many companies require internal candidates to go through a similar hiring process as external candidates for employment.

A job promotion interview is different from a job interview for a new position for several reasons. First, you are already part of the company, and you know what their expectations are. Secondly, every day – before and after the interview – will give you an opportunity to show off your abilities while working in your current position.

In addition, you can use your already established commitment to the company, and your aspirations to grow within it, to your benefit. On the flip side, you still need to go through an interview process and will be compared with other candidates for the job, possibly external as well as internal candidates. In fact, your interview may be tougher than candidates from outside the company, because expectations about what you know and your skills may be higher.

Job Promotion Application Requirements

When applying for a promotion or a lateral job change within the company, employees are expected to apply and interview for the position per company guidelines. Even though you’re already employed at the company, don’t be surprised if you have to resubmit your resume and craft a cover letter for the new position.

In fact, submitting a custom cover letter specific to the new position can be very helpful in landing the job.

Remember, you may be competing with outside candidates, and although you have an advantage in that you already work for the company, that doesn’t mean you should skimp on your job application efforts. Take the time to carefully review and proofread your application materials before you submit them.

Tips to Successfully Interview for a Job Promotion

Here are tips for acing a job promotion interview, so you can be prepared for an opportunity to move up the career ladder.

Before the Job Promotion Interview

Pay Attention to the Hiring Process. When you find out there is a job opportunity you’re interested in, follow the application instructions. Don’t expect to be able to bypass the company’s hiring process to get the job. If the company has rules, they apply.

Prepare for the Interview. Review common interview questions and answers and consider how you would respond, based on your knowledge of the company, your current job and the new position, your skills, and your goals for the future. Review the skills you have that make you qualified for the new job. Also, review typical job promotion interview questions that you may be asked.

Do Your Job Well. Even though you may be moving on, continue to do your current job well, to remind your superiors about what a great employee you are.

Tell Your Boss. If you get selected for an interview, tell your current supervisor so he or she doesn’t hear the news from a third party. Explain why are applying and ask your boss for his or her support.

Prepare For the Promotion. Prepare to pass your current job on to someone else; have all of your ducks in a row. If your goal is to continue moving up in the company, leaving a mess behind can reflect poorly on you. Offer to assist with training and to be available for questions.

During the Job Promotion Interview

Stay Professional. Even though you know the company and you may even know the interviewer, do not lose your professional attitude.

It’s important not to come across as too casual and relaxed. It’s important to show the interviewer that you want the job, and have what it takes to succeed in the new role.

Highlight your strengths. Your strengths may include your familiarity with the position and the company, the success you have had in your current position, and the commitment you feel towards the company to make it as successful as possible.

Remember You Don’t Know Everything. Be prepared to talk about unfamiliar aspects of the position. Do not assume you already know the in’s and out’s. You may get caught off guard.

Don’t Be Over Confident. Do not go to the interview presuming that you “got the job” – an over confident attitude can be damaging.

Ask Questions. If you have questions about the new position, what your role will be, and how you would transition, be sure to ask during the interview. Here are examples of questions to ask the interviewer.

After the Job Promotion Interview

Say Thank You. Write a thank you note to the person that interviewed you. Reiterate your interest in the new position.

Don’t Burn Your Bridges. If you get the promotion, do not burn any bridges. You will be leaving co-workers behind, possibly becoming their superior, treat them with the same respect you did when you were working together. When the promotion is finalized, let your co-workers know that you are moving on. However, if the company is going to send an official announcement, wait until that is sent before sending a personal email message.

Don’t Have Hard Feelings. If you don’t get the job, leave any negative feelings behind and work towards the next promotion opportunity.

Power Writers USA would love to hear your comments and questions about this and other articles we share and post.  Please contact us if you are in need of a resume update, cover letter, LinkedIn profile update, etc.

Operations Manager Interview Questions

Operations INterview

This article provides some interesting interview questions to help you prepare for your interview as an operations manager or executive.  The article was also written from the perspective of the hiring manager so you can gain more insight as to what they will be looking for during your interview.  

Original article click here.

Operations Manager Interview Questions

Operations Managers play an important role as they ensure smooth operation of all company procedures. Their role is to plan, oversee and coordinate day-to-day activities to improve effectiveness, productivity and performance.

You should look for candidates with broad experience and working knowledge of all organizational functions. Operations Managers are responsible for various tasks, from logistics to resources management and budget planning. Therefore, your ideal candidate should know how to tackle operational problems and be able to find effective solutions in a timely manner.

During your interview process, you should keep an eye out for candidates who are eager to step up when a challenge arises. Excellent numerical and interpersonal skills are also signs that your candidate is a good match for your Operations Manager position. For better results, tailor these questions to meet any specific tasks and requirements you have.

Operational and Situational questions

  • Describe the main daily tasks for an Operations Manager.
  • What is budget planning and how do you handle it step-by-step?
  • What is your experience with logistics management?
  • Have you ever negotiated contracts with vendors? What’s the most effective approach?
  • Which Management Information Systems have you previously used?
  • Are you familiar with Cost Analysis tools? Mention any statistical tools you have experience working with.
  • If your manager asked you to make a report about production costs, what method would you use?
  • Which are, in your opinion, the most important financial management best practices?
  • What does successful communication between different organizational functions/departments mean to you?
  • How do support services contribute to achieving business goals? Give some examples.
  • We want to ensure our confidential data is stored in a secure place. How would you cooperate with our IT team to achieve this?

Behavioral questions

  • Have you ever successfully implemented a cost-cutting strategy?
  • How big was the last team you worked with and what problems did you face?
  • What’s your experience in making presentations?
  • How do you manage 1:1 employee meetings?

 

Please feel free to contact Power Writers USA with questions or comments.  We are your best source to help you land an interview by providing top-notch resume writing services, resume updates, cover letters, etc.

The Most Common Finance Interview Questions and How to Prepare for Them

Interviewing

This week our spotlight is on the financial services sector.  While this article may be a bit more relevant for new grads entering the finance sector it never hurts for a seasoned professional to brush up on current hiring trends.

Original article click here

The Most Common Finance Interview Questions and How to Prepare for Them

If you’re in your final year of college, or you’ve recently graduated, chances are you’re dedicating a good portion of your life to searching for jobs, polishing and distributing your resume, and preparing for the ultimate nerve-test: the job interview. Interviews come with inherent pressure, stress, and mystery. Unfortunately, they’re a necessary part of the job hunting process. The good news is you don’t need to love job interviews to be successful in them. You just need to know how to prepare.

We talked with Clay Skurdal, COO of Advisors Ahead, about the most critical and commonly asked finance job interview questions. Advisors Ahead provides a bridge between finance students and the financial services industry, ensuring recent graduates come into the business with the training and background it takes to be productive on day one. Clay has sat across the desk from thousands of job seekers, and he knows what it takes for an applicant to stand out from the pack.

Here are Clay’s top four finance interview questions you should be prepared to be answer.

1. Why do you want to start a career in the financial services industry?

The worst thing you can do when you’re asked this question is to deliver a safe, meaningless answer. The interviewer is trying to figure out what makes you “you.” Telling the interviewer that you want to help people won’t make you stand out. If you say you want to help people, the interviewer might ask you why, and might continue to ask you why until they get to the core of your motivation.

The best way to prepare for this question is to write a “passion essay” on why you want to get into the business. Write your real story. Did your family go through a tough financial period that inspired you to learn about money management? That’s the kind of honesty the interviewer is looking for. There are as many answers to this question as there are applicants for the position you’re interviewing for, so the only wrong answer is a non-answer.

2. What are you most proud of in the last 12 months, and why?

This question is intended to get a better idea of who you are as a person, and find out what you’re passionate about. It could be an exam or paper that you worked hard for and did exceptionally well on. It could be a problem you solved in your internship or your night job. It could also be an example from your personal life. This question helps the interviewer understand who you are and what you value. It also shows them that you have the ability to set and accomplish goals.

3. Tell me about a time someone asked you to bend the rules or do something unethical. How did you handle that situation?

In a finance career, there are unlimited opportunities to go astray and abandon your moral compass. This question helps the interviewer better understand your capacity to do the right thing, even in the face of extreme pressure. They want to know if you have a strong ethical center, or if you can be led down a bad path by poor judgement or outside influence. Again, have an example ready before the interview. Be prepared to tell a story that demonstrates your strong moral character.

4. Tell me about your extracurricular activities, and why you’re passionate about them?

This shouldn’t come as a surprise, but companies aren’t interested in hiring robots. Interviewers who ask this question are trying to see if you’re passionate about something other than work. What are your hobbies? When you’re not at work, how do you choose to spend your time? They want to get past the front that you’re putting up and learn more about you as a person. Situations that demonstrate your ability to lead or be an active member of your community are great examples to cite.

According to Clay, it’s more valuable to prepare your story than prepare for specific finance interview questions. Listen intently to the interviewer and find a way to tell your personal story within the questions that are asked. Finance is a “people” business. Who you are as a person is what tells the interviewer if you’re the kind of employee who can add value to the organization. When you walk into the interview, you are Jane Doe, a name on a resume. You’re not that different from the other resumes in the stack. To set yourself apart from the group, prepare for the interview and ensure your name, face, and story make a lasting impression.

Power Writers USA would love your feedback on this and other articles we post and share.

Interview tips: 10 Tips to Improve Interview Performance

Can't get an interview without an awesome resume!

Power Writers USA will definitely help you get the interview you want by working with you to create a stand-out, professional resume written by a Certified Professional Resume Writer.  This is a good article from Monster with some advice for what to do once you do get that interview you are hoping for!  

Do you know how to make your case to an interviewer? Follow these 10 interview tips to boost your chances of landing the job.

Even the smartest and most qualified job seekers need to prepare for job interviews. Why, you ask? Interviewing is a learned skill, and there are no second chances to make a great first impression. So study these 10 strategies to improve your interview skills.

Practice good nonverbal communication

It’s about demonstrating confidence: standing straight, making eye contact and connecting with a firm handshake. That first nonverbal impression can be a great beginning — or quick ending — to your interview.

Dress for the job or company

Today’s casual dress codes do not give you permission to dress as “they” do when you interview. It is important to know what to wear to an interview and to be well-groomed. Whether you wear a suit or something less formal depends on the company culture and the position you are seeking. If possible, call to find out about the company dress code before the interview.

Listen

From the very beginning of the interview, your interviewer is giving you information, either directly or indirectly. If you are not hearing it, you are missing a major opportunity. Good communication skills include listening and letting the person know you heard what was said. Observe your interviewer, and match that style and pace.

Don’t talk too much

Telling the interviewer more than he needs to know could be a fatal mistake. When you have not prepared ahead of time, you may ramble when answering interview questions, sometimes talking yourself right out of the job. Prepare for the interview by reading through the job posting, matching your skills with the position’s requirements and relating only that information.

Don’t be too familiar

The interview is a professional meeting to talk business. This is not about making a new friend. Your level of familiarity should mimic the interviewer’s demeanor. It is important to bring energy and enthusiasm to the interview and to ask questions, but do not overstep your place as a candidate looking for a job.

Use appropriate language

It’s a given that you should use professional language during the interview. Be aware of any inappropriate slang words or references to age, race, religion, politics or sexual orientation — these topics could send you out the door very quickly.

Don’t be cocky

Attitude plays a key role in your interview success. There is a fine balance between confidence, professionalism and modesty. Even if you’re putting on a performance to demonstrate your ability, overconfidence is as bad, if not worse, as being too reserved.

Take care to answer the questions

When interviewers ask for an example of a time when you did something, they are asking behavioral interview questions, which are designed to elicit a sample of your past behavior. If you fail to relate a specific example, you not only don’t answer the question, but you also miss an opportunity to prove your ability and talk about your skills.

Ask questions

When asked if they have any questions, most candidates answer, “No.” Wrong answer. Part of knowing how to interview is being ready to ask questions that demonstrate an interest in what goes on in the company. Asking questions also gives you the opportunity to find out if this is the right place for you. The best questions come from listening to what you’re asked during the interview and asking for additional information.

Don’t appear desperate

When you interview with the “please, please hire me” approach, you appear desperate and less confident. Reflect the three Cs during the interview: cool, calm and confidence. You know you can do the job; make sure the interviewer believes you can, too.

Author: Carole Martin, Monster Contributing Writer

Article was originally posted here: https://www.monster.com/career-advice/article/boost-your-interview-iq

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