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BEFORE AN INTERVIEW

   Your first interview will be a screening interview, whether in person or over the phone, and for that you need to know the basics about the company. Most of the interviewers will ask you, "What do you know about our company?" Impress them with a short description of their business and mention one of their successes.

   Don't ever walk into an interview unprepared. Read everything you can about the company. Any information, good or bad about the company is beneficial for you to know.

   Become familiar with the size of the company, as measured by its assets, net income, revenues, products, employees, and market share. You do not have to memorize the numbers, just know some rounded figures.

   Know what products or services the company delivers to the marketplace. Determine where they are in the market, and where they plan to go.

   Take a look at the cover page graphics, mission statement, summary statement, financial highlights, and chairperson's letter.

   Identify how the firm measures success. Learn what is important to it, beyond profitability. It can be its organizational values, stock price, market share, product recognition, strong stable of products, growth rate, research and development budget, credit worthiness, cash flow, or some other aspects. The company hires employees who will help it succeed, thus you will benefit from knowing what is important for the company to be successful.

DURING AN INTERVIEW

   Think before you speak. Organize your thoughts, and present them in an organized manner. Show interviewers how well you are knowledgeable in the area. If some questions confuse you, ask for clarifications. If you do not know an answer to the question, do not panic. You can always say that you have heard about it, but you have not had a chance to use it in your practice yet, and because you are pretty knowledgeable in the area, you will be able to familiarize yourself with it quickly.

   Be energetic during the interview. Take notes of information that most interests you. Show your interest even if the interview is boring. Remember, interviewers make their decisions based on the interview, and it is in your interests to show your best sides.

   In some occasions, you might misunderstand the name of the interviewer, do not hesitate to ask for the name again.

   Ask your interviewer for a business card and make sure that the information is current and that you can contact him or her.

AFTER AN INTEVIEW

   Send a "Thank You" note to reassure them that you are still interested in a position and you feel excited to be a part of a company.