Tips to for a Successful
Teen Job Interview
You’ve gone through all the work of
pounding the pavement to find yourself a job. You’ve
carefully written your resume, typed it and presented it
to several potential employers. Now you’ve just received
a call from one of the companies you’ve applied to.
And they want you to come down for an interview! It’ll
be the first job interview you’ve ever gone to. Now
Don’t panic. It’s true that an interview is
very important. But by following a few tips, you increase
your chances of standing apart from the other applicants
and increasing your chances of getting hired.
First of all, and this may seem like a no brainer, but
first of all you need to learn about the company. An amazing
amount of people applying to jobs just send out dozens of
applications without knowing much about the company they’re
applying to. And this lack of knowledge shows up during
the interview process.
You can often find out about a company through a Web search
or the library. You’ll find that many librarians are
very helpful and knowledgeable about finding information
about businesses, especially some of the larger companies.
Try to find out what types of personalities the company
likes to see in their employees. And if you have those personalities,
be sure to make sure your interviewer knows that by the
way you talk and act.
Get a friend or family member to help you act out a potential
interview. The old saying “practice makes perfect”
is true. Plus it’ll help you feel more comfortable
about the whole process.
Dress professionally. A suit is rarely necessary. But it’s
important that you’ve got carefully groomed hair and
clean fingernails. Don’t neglect your breath. You
don’t want to repulse people with your terrible breath!
Use mints. Brush your teeth. Chew gum before (not during!)
the interview. Do whatever it takes to make sure your breath
doesn’t smell. And avoid perfumes and aftershaves.
There are more and more people who have allergies to scents,
and you don’t want to be remembered because you made
your interviewer sneeze or gave him or her a headache.
Arrive early. Punctuality is always appreciated. And if
you get to the interview early, you’ll have a few
minutes to relax and compose yourself.
When you meet your interviewer, look him or her directly
(but not aggressively!) in the eyes and offer a firm handshake.
Smile and greet the person by name. If possible, make a
little small talk. A comment or two about the weather is
usually a safe topic.
During the interview, answer succinctly. This means don’t
ramble about stuff unrelated to the question. Be brief and
answer the question clearly. If you need a moment or two
to gather your thoughts, simply say you need to think about
the question for a moment. Your honesty will be appreciated.
Just don’t drag on the thoughtful moment for too long.
Be sure to show interest in the company by asking questions
at appropriate times during the interview. End the interview
by thanking the interviewer for his or her time.
Always be sure to follow-up. A brief thank-you note is
a good idea and help you stand out from the other applicants.