The most powerful preparation you can do before ever interviewing again is honing where you are coming from when you are in an interview. 

First of all, you aren’t going to an interview to sell yourself or to get something from the person/ people you’re speaking with. Go to a job interview to help the interviewer, and the company, resolve their missing person issue. You’re consulting with them about their problem of having a missing person by sharing what you bring to the table so they can make a good hiring decision. 


Again, the biggest component is attitude. The attitude of being there to help is kind of irresistible. If this is where you’re coming from you will have a winning vibe and a 100% chance of succeeding- even if they pick someone else. 

When you talk about yourself, try to keep the same other-centered approach. A Past Employer (company) was facing _____, and I did _____, which took them to _____ better position. This type of answer is also called the STaR method (Situation – Tactic – positive Result), and is the basic format for most situation based interview questions (Tell me about a time…). 

Asking the Right Questions

As part of your preparation, you want to come with questions prepared by having thoroughly researched the company, and in the first interview in particular the questions should be all about them: 

➔  What are you dealing with? 

➔  What needs to happen in order to effectively deal with that? 

➔  What qualities in a candidate would be most helpful in getting you where you want to go? 

Like that. Essentially what you’re asking is, “What do you really need?” Ask this as early in the interview as you can gracefully do it. That way you have the rest of the interview to speak to what they really care about. 

Here’s a clarifying question: “So right now, your department is facing _____, and if the new team member works out perfectly, they will help get the company to _____ situation. So you need someone who has _____ qualities.” 

Try to make another one of your objectives delivering value that they can use, even if it’s small. 

To summarize: Be prepared by having done your research on the company, and bringing thoughtful questions that are about them and what they need. Then when you share about yourself, share examples that speak to what they really care about. Don’t be there to sell something, be there to help. Keep your attention there and you’ll have great energy, build better rapport, and feel more confident and comfortable during the interview.