In today’s world of higher education and professional resumes it becomes increasingly important to work on your interview skills. With more and more people searching out ways to elevate themselves through education employers want to hire that perfect someone rather than that perfect set of skills. Enter the interview.

At a recent LJS networking event the topic of discussion was what does it take to interview like a pro. A gathering of employees and employers talked about how to interview like a pro to land that dream job. There was a long list of what people look for in employees, however none of them were job specific skills. The theme of what is being looked for is what kind of a person you are. Comment was made that all of these character traits aren’t usually things that can be learned, but the skills required for the jobs can usually be taught. Everyone agreed that they all want employees who are trustworthy, reliable and share the same values as them and their organization.

What do employees not want to hear and what can they do to make sure they’re doing all the right things. The last thing a prospective employee wants to hear when they step into that interview room is what is your biggest weakness? While many have prepared for this it still feels like you have to admit something to your new employer. A piece of advice that we at LJS like to give is to pick something that doesn’t really relate to the job that’s being applied for and then elaborate how you’ve been working on it. Unless your interviewer is particularly astute they’re probably just going to ask you about any old weakness which gives you any easy out to pick whatever you want. If you want to make sure that you’re memorable in the interview process come prepared to tell the interviewer what you’re most passionate about and how that can be of benefit to them. In essence your job is to sell yourself to that person and you want to make sure it’s easy for them to buy. Letting them know that you can be of good use is your biggest priority

Finally the discussion rounded out with a short discussion on the things that everyone wants to know, but everyone knows that you can’t really ask them. For example you might have a relatively young person applying for your posting, what everyone wants to know is if there’s anything going on at home that might prevent someone from performing the job at peak performance. Things such as children or the prospect thereof could possibly cause a bias against a future employee. The easiest way to get around this as an employer would be to ask the interviewee how many days of work they missed in the last year, this way you find out how dedicated they have been to previous positions and what you can expect of them in the future.

At LJS we help many people perfect their interview skills so they can land their dream job. If you’re looking for help feel free to contact us by using the connect button on the home page, we look forward to hearing from you.