PRACTICE (makes perfect)!
This is a cliché, but oh so TRUE. Here’s an article about common questions and how to answer them. Now think about how you would answer them and practice them out loud. You can contact career services, and we’d be happy to do a mock interview session with you.
Research the organization in advance.
Research not just the company website, but their LinkedIn and any other online resources such as articles in business journals/blogs, Glassdoor employee reviews, etc. Talk with people who work for the company if you can. Find out what the company has for goals and upcoming plans. Compose questions to the interviewer that show you have done this research.
Dress for a first great impression.
It may sound unfair, because you may be the greatest candidate coming in. But if you don’t dress appropriately, your chances of getting the job are slim.
During the interview.
Also, be aware of discriminatory topics and avoid introducing them into the conversation, as well as answering any from your interviewer. These include: religion, plans for pregnancy/number of children; sexual orientation; etc. If it’s personal information or unrelated to your ability to do the job, don’t talk about it. If the interviewer raises one of these topics, politely ask what the question has to do with your ability to perform the job.
Follow up and thank you notes.
Send a thank you note to the interviewer(s). Hand written is best, but email is acceptable. Follow up on your application and interview, but don’t be a pest.
CareerOneStop offers resources on interviewing, including common questions, illegal questions and questions for employers.