Six Steps to Prepare for Your Next Job Interview: Part 2 of 3

 In part 1, I spoke about how to properly study the job description, why each section is important, and why it’s important to utilize your network during the job research process. In part 2, I will talk about how I went about gathering a deeper understanding of the role and how to find and prepare to answer interview questions

Strategy to Develop Deeper Understanding of the Role

To prepare for the interview I put together a PowerPoint (dorky I know). I broke the slides up into three sections: Understanding the Role, 30/60/90 Day Plan, and Future Goals.

Why it’s Important: I created this not necessarily for sharing, but more so to put real thought into the position, what I would like to accomplish in the first three months would be, and to generate questions for myself and the interview team. Turns out I used it in the interview and it seemed to go over really well!

  • To understanding the role I identified perceived challenges, complexities, and key tasks. I made sure that I could either speak to how I could use past experience to be successful or developed questions for the interview team to better understand expectations.  
  • The 30/60/90-day plan was something I hadn’t created before. For those who don’t know, “a 30/60/90 Day Plan is a written outline of your strategy, and the plans you have for the first three months on the job.” Your knowledge of the role and the company will dictate how specific your 30/60/90 will be. I listed about ten topics in each section that progressed from general to specific, for me personally, I focused on acclimating in the first 30, contributing in the next, and finally leading.
  • Future goals were something I added to demonstrate my ability to think strategically and present my long-term vision. This allowed me to establish my ideas for growing the role in the future. For example, how can you take the position to the next level? How do you see the role progressing in the next year or two?

For more tips on how to create your own 30/60/90 day plan– here is a great article that I found useful during my research: Creating a 30-60-90 Day Plan to Secure the Job

Preparing for Interview Questions

I like to try to make stressful tasks fun by coming up with games to take my mind off of them. This interview was no different.

Why It’s Important: This is the most important part of an interview. Don’t blow it! Everyone will prepare differently, but I’ll take you through how I got myself ready.

  • First, I referred to the JD and used the competencies I identified to research potential questions I wanted to be prepared for.
  • I then made note cards with the questions on them and handed them out to a few close friends. It was a game for a few days, whenever I saw one of them they would rapid fire questions at me in an impromptu style, sometimes mid-sentence, and I would need to answer them.
  • We’d then discuss and laugh after they were done about how it went and what I could improve on. It worked really well for me and kept me on my toes!

I have used these concepts in my own job search/ interview preparation with success and I wanted to pass them on to you! For more tips on questions you might need to be prepared for your interview check this article out: How To Ace The 50 Most Common Interview Questions

I really enjoyed this part of the preparation! Getting my thoughts down on PowerPoint helped me focus on what I wanted to accomplish and although preparing with my friends was fun, it also really helped me focus on stories I wanted to tell and the pace at which I told them. Look out for my final article next week when I cover developing questions for the interview team and a mock interview. Let me know if you have any thoughts or questions! I look forward to hearing from you!