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

 In part 2, I spoke about how I went about gathering a deeper understanding of the role and how to find and prepare to answer interview questions. In part 3, I will talk about how I went about developing questions to ask the interview team and my mock interview.

Developing Questions for the Interview Team

It’s always a great idea to create questions for the interview team! Sometimes, these can be make a break for a candidate, so putting in some time and effort is key.

Why it’s Important: The most important thing to keep in mind when developing questions for the interview team is asking questions that will help you determine if the role and the company are a good fit, remember you are interviewing them too!

  • The interview agenda should provide you with the names and titles of the interview team (if you don’t receive one, you should ask). It never hurts to check out their LinkedIn profiles to understand their experience and background, and even any similar interests! That paired with the job description (JD) should provide enough information to put together some great questions.
  • I utilized the Responsibilities section from the JD to develop questions, then determined who I thought on the interview team would be best suited to answer.
  • After I created the questions, I ran them by a few friends and co-workers to make sure they made sense. I made a few tweaks and adjustments based on their feedback and then put them in a word document and printed them off to study and bring to the interview.

Something to Note: There is a good possibility that you might cover some of your questions in the interview, so creating 3-4 per person isn’t overkill, it’s simply being prepared.

Bonus Point: This is your opportunity to ask questions about management style, company culture, career growth, expectations for success, etc. Here are two of my favorite questions that I asked: How will you know if you hired the right person 1 year from now? And How do your direct reports describe your management style?

For more tips on questions you could ask during an interview – here is a great article that I found useful during my research: Questions You Should Absolutely Ask An Interviewer

Mock Interview

I am lucky enough to have a mentor who was willing to help me by doing a mock interview.  If you don’t have a mentor, no problem, you can reach out to a trusted colleague or even a friend or family member who has been through the interview process.

  • I met with my mentor prior to the mock interview to walk him through the role, help him understand my motivations for wanting to make this change, and let him know what I was looking to take away from the mock interview. In addition, we tried to identify any competencies we thought I may be asked about.
  • My mentor took the mock interview very seriously (almost like he enjoyed grilling me) and came prepared with questions in a similar style as the ones I would experience in the actual interview.
  • After we were done, he went back through his notes and provided feedback, then walked me through some of my answers that could use improvement.

 The mock interview provided me the ability to practice my answers, tone, and pace, collect feedback, and make any adjustments. This process made me more confident and less stressed going into the interview, which is why I so highly recommend it! 

Bonus Point: Remember it is ok to ask the interviewer to repeat a question or ask for them to clarify.  It can be kind of nerve wracking, so practicing this technique during a mock interview can be really helpful.

For more information on the different styles of interview questions – here is an article I found that helped me prepare: The Eight Types of Interview Questions

That concludes my series on preparing for an interview. I hope you found some of these tips helpful! Now it is time to go nail that interview you’ve been stressing about! Let me know if you have any questions or want to chat, I look forward to hearing from you!