Applying For a Job- Part IV

For Part I, click here.

For Part II, click here.

For Part III, click here.

After several months of consistently bugging the hiring manager about giving you a job, he finally gives in and schedules an interview with you just to shut you up. Hopefully it doesn’t actually get to that point, but you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do. So now on to the next step.

9.       The Interview

You may not get it the first time, which is why you should already have a few lined up. If you got the job, then congratulations! If not, then keep trying the other stores and don’t give up. Like your initial visit, it is important to dress your best, if not better than you did the first time. Present yourself well, doing so the second you enter the door. One thing I should note though is that you shouldn’t appear stiff; be natural about it. You want to appear confident, not scared. You may be asked to wait, so either stand with your hands folded behind your back, or if you’re offered a seat, be sure to sit up straight. When you finally meet the manager, give them a firm handshake and be sure to look them in the eye when doing so. Take a seat when he or she asks you to and be prepared to answer these questions:

Tell me about yourself. Tell them what you do, where you go to school, what you do for the community. These are things that you should have already put into your cover letter.

What are your skills/strengths? Information that should have already been in your resume. “I’m a hard worker, a team player, I’m organized”, or something like that. Be sure to elaborate and relate to experiences you’ve had working in the community or things you’ve done to be successful at school.

What are your weaknesses? Be honest with yourself, but don’t bring anything up that may potentially hurt your chances of getting employed.

Why do you want this job? Also something that should have been covered in your cover letter/resume. Elaborate some, explaining some of the aspects of the industry that you’re interested in doing.

Tell me about a difficult situation you’ve encountered. You’re bound to have come across something through any of your volunteer experiences. Come up with one instance and explain how you dealt with the situation.

How long do you plan on working here?/What is your availability? Since you’re a student, your schedule is going to be limited. Fortunately for you, you can work at any time since you’re a homeschooler. The thing they want to make sure of is that you’re going to be working nights and weekends. Also, people occasionally come and go, and since training is costly to the company, they want to know how long you’re going to stay there. If you’re going to be heading off for college soon, this would be important information to give them and would be best to find out if there is a location near to where you’re going that you could transfer to.

What do you know about us? This is why I suggested researching the company that you’re applying for earlier. This lets them know that you are knowledgeable of who they are and what they do most importantly.

10.   Follow Up…Again

This one may seem a bit trivial, but you want to make sure the hiring manager follows through with the hiring process so that you don’t end up getting placed on the back burner. Some places do a background check immediately, but others tend to wait until its most convenient and in worst case scenarios, end up changing their minds. Be sure to keep in contact with them, and when it’s all said and done, be sure to thank them for putting up with you. You can do this in person, though many sources suggest actually giving them a ‘thank you’ card, as this is a more formal way of thanking the employer for giving you their time.

The interview of course can be the trickiest part of applying for a job because you may have no idea who will end up interviewing you or what they may ask of you. But if you follow everything that I’ve outlined for you, making your way up to the final step will be much easier for you than the person who walks into the store wearing casual attire, drops off their application, and waits at home for a phone call requesting an interview. Being prepared for the steps ahead is what is going to get you that job that you’re applying for.