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The Harrowing Interview Process: Making Sense of it All

The interview process can be a harrowing one – and that’s even before you actually sit down for one. There’s the resume to consider, all the unsolicited interviewing advice to sift through, and then the actual interview itself.

Some things to consider run the gambit of how early one should arrive before the scheduled interview, to whether you should limit your answers to three sentences or speak freely and naturally, and finally – how many questions should one have prepared to ask at the end of the interview.

Some common ground: arrive at the company’s lobby at least ten minutes early, keep your answers brief to avoid babbling or saying something you regret, and have at least three questions to ask the recruiter.

And yes, you should practice, practice, practice before the interview date. Best way to accomplish that is to place your computer screen on forward facing and practice talking as you’re looking into the camera.

What about the cover letter and reference letter no one seems to agree on? General advice: bring a copy of each just in case you’re asked for one. Otherwise, don’t bother offering them unless the interviewer requests a copy.

Here’s a biggie: should you ask about the salary range? Yes, go for it. Times have changed and if the interviewer is going to hold something that simple over your head, then you wouldn’t want to work for them anyway.

What about the children? Should you bring them up? I say, yes, you should. Gone are the days where job candidates are supposed to pledge their unquestionable loyalty to their job. Just the opposite, it’ll make you appear human. And don’t forget that elevator pitch. Yes, it’s still relevant these days.

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