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It’s officially June, and that means graduation for some of you. Whether you’re in the job market for the first time or working on a quick career change, I wanted to share my top job interview do’s and don’ts in celebration of graduation season. Navigating the ins and outs of a successful interview is no small task, but trust me when I say, you’ve got this. There are tons of little tweaks you can make to feel confident and nail every question you’re asked. Here are my to job interview do’s and don’ts to get you through to your dream job!

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Do: Prepare ahead of time. Don’t: Obsess or memorize.

One of the most toxic things you can do ahead of an interview is doubt yourself; however, there’s a fine line between cocky and confident. In my experience, it’s best to spend your time researching your industry as well as a company’s values. Don’t make your interview scripted. Writing out a full speech will only lead you to tripping over your words and over

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thinking the small details of what you’re trying to say versus focusing on the big picture and what you have to offer. If you haven’t interviewed in a while, I do recommend rifling through the job description and requirements, then writing down a list of your accomplishments and contributions to reflect those requirements. I find that this helps jog my memory and remind myself all the different things I can bring to the table. Also, showing up to your interview between 15 to 30 minutes early is ideal so that you are able to find parking, get an idea of the office you’ll be working in, and to prove you’re dependable from the start.

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Do: Be willing to learn. Don’t: Be afraid to ask questions.

Employers appreciate when you are eager to learn new things and make yourself adaptable to the working environment around you. The ability to ask for help goes along way and this includes admitting the areas in which you don’t hold as much experience in before your interviews. On top of the well-known essentials, always have your planner, a notebook, and a pen handy so you can be sure to take notes and jot down important information as it’s given. This will show the interviewer that you’re prepared, you’re passionate, and you’re precise!

Some great questions to ask include:

– Where are opportunities for improvement in this business right now?
– What are the expectations for this role in the first 3 months?
– What are the most important qualities and skills for someone to excel in this role?

And finally, one question, I never ever forget to ask is, “When will I hear from you?”

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Do: Ask for what you want up front. Don’t: Be inappropriate

If you plan to stay with a company for an extended amount of time, you need to know the etiquette of your industry. Knowing your worth and staying true to yourself are all key parts of being successful; however, there’s a time and a place for everything. Never be the one to initiate salary discussion. It is only appropriate to discuss finances when prompted by your potential employers. That being said, do not be afraid to negotiate. You don’t get what you don’t ask for.

Statistics show that women ask for less compared to their male counterparts. So, as a rule of thumb, I used to try negotiating for 5%-10% more depending on experience. If not salary, then negotiate for more vacation time or ask to have a review mid-year and go from there. The worst thing that happens is that they say “no”.

If you’ve ever had a crazy interview experience, tell me all about it below!

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