Mar 4th, 2009 by TVG Staff
Less than 20 days till Spring! I am so ready to pack away the coat, scarf and gloves and make way for the warmer temperatures. I shouldn’t complain because it has been a mild winter in St. Louis (we’ve had a couple of 60-degree days in February) but we’ve still had forecasts for snow recently that I could do without.
Another reminder that spring is just around the corner is the beginning of interviews for summer interns at The Vandiver Group. I could hardly believe it when I met our first candidate a couple of weeks ago (I think we must have skipped half of January or something this year!) After returning to my desk and validating the fact that it ACTUALLY is the end of February, I thought it might be a good opportunity to do a quick refresher on some dos and don’ts of interviewing.
1. You can never be too early! Like I mentioned above, at TVG, we are interviewing for our summer intern positions now. While May seems like years away, many organizations begin looking at future staffing levels far in advance in order to be prepared for upcoming projects. The closer we get to mid-May, the more and more resumes start to pour in our inboxes. Take the opportunity to start early and get out in front of your competition!
2. Be prepared. Bring extra copies of your resume, samples of your work and don’t be surprised if you’re asked to complete a writing exercise as part of the interview process.
3. Ask questions – if you need to, prepare a list of questions you have about the organization. And don’t forget to include questions about the culture of company. While skills and work experience are important, it’s also important to make sure that you are a good fit with personality and culture of the organization.
4. You’ve heard it a thousand times, but you need to turn off/silence your cell phone. Even if it is on vibrate, trust me, the buzzing sound is noticeable and is distracting during an interview.
5. Many companies accept cover letters and resumes via email. When submitting your information electronically, be aware of the file names. Files saved as “Resume to use for marketing jobs” or “Use this one” do not appear to be professional.
Best of luck to those beginning the interviewing adventure! I know it can be a nerve-racking experience, but my best advice is to make the interview more of a conversation versus a question and answer session. Oh, and one other reminder, don’t forget to send a thank you note following the interview.
If you need more tips and advice on preparing for interview season, check out Monster.com’s Advice page with job search, resume and interview tips and samples.