Ask The Expert

Once you have your resume ready you may begin to apply for jobs which you qualify for. Some companies will ask for a cover letter and others may not care. Best practice is to send a cover letter with your resume. On your application, you should “always” be honest. If you don’t want to say why you were terminated from a job you can say “will explain”. Some companies will fire you on the spot if they have hired you and discover you lied on your application. Your application should be legible to read and understand. Chronological order is best in descending order (starting with the most recent employer/previous employer).

The interview process: Upon receiving a call for an interview please don’t try to work their schedule around yours by saying something like “I work until five Monday through Friday. Can you interview me after that time?” This sends the message that your time is more valuable than the company and you expect that they work around you. It most likely ain’t gonna happen. You knew you worked those hours when you applied so either figure it out and meet the company’s interview schedule or decline and stop applying if you feel you cannot interview. Assuming you have agreed to interview always dress professionally (especially if you are a CPA, a Manager, Director, etc.). Many times support staff can get away with business attire (not necessarily professional). You should take pride in your appearance and hygiene. Be neat and clean. Do not wear perfume, or cologne some people are sensitive to fragrances and/or allergic (this is not going to work in your favor). Please do not show up for an interview smelling of cigarette or other substances. This can really put the interviewer(s) in angry/annoyed mode. If you are going to wear an ankle bracelet provided by the judicial system you might want to rethink that attire. Always be professional, and courteous. Arrogance and having a know it all attitude won’t get your foot in the door. Pay attention to the question(s) being asked and be honest with your answers (don’t give them more than they are asking for unless it will benefit you). They don’t want to hear about the drama going on in your life. Know something about the company. You don’t have to know everything but know enough so that the interviewer(s) will know you were interested enough to check them out. Please don’t beg for a job. It’s unattractive. Name dropping is just as unattractive so don’t do that either. Ladies, leave the boyfriend, husband, children at home.

Try to come up with three really good questions about the company or job to ask at the end but pay attention during the interview that they have not already answered a question you were going to ask. When you ask good questions it can only reflect you in a good light. Sometimes you may not get that job but sometimes the interviewer(s) may see you in another role that may be coming up so if they ask you to come to an interview for a different position you may want to pay attention. There’s still no guarantee but that shows you have their attention. Be more prepared if this happens.