Most people find job interviews stressful, and you won’t be wrong either. Every interview is unique and you never know what questions you would be asked or what the interviewer wants to hear.

In my decades of interviewing, I’ve found that preparing adequately for the interview de-stresses the situation considerably. Yet surveys have shown that 78% of all candidates – regardless of the level for which they are interviewing – wing it!

Preparation is KEY!

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing tips on how to ace the job interview like a rockstar and answering some common questions.

Like so much of the interview, seemingly innocent questions can trip you up. You think you are answering them in a way that puts you in the best light, but you’d be surprised at how many people completely miss the boat. Merely to hope an interview has a positive result is not enough. That’s basically forfeiting your ability to drive up the percentage of a positive outcome.

Here’s a common question, “Why do you want to work here?” some people will say things such as:

“I’ve worked in this industry for 15 years and been very successful. I feel I can make a difference in your organization. I have a proven track record of leadership. I’ve read in the paper that your company is having some problems, and with my experience as a Director of XXXXX, I can help straighten those out.”

That answer may sound good and appear to suffice, but on a scale of 1 – 10, it ranks about a 4!

Why? The answer shows no research, no thought, no consideration. It sounds stock and could suffice for any number of companies. Overall, unimpressive.

In my experience, I’ve found that while mid level management tends to UNDERanswer the question, upper level management will often OVERanswer the question. One group doesn’t provide enough information because of a limited lack of experience. The other group has been around, worked their way up the ladder in more than one company, and in their attempt to sound thoughtful, intelligent, and wise, end up saying very little at all.

Let’s look closer.

WHY DO YOU WANT TO WORK HERE?

Here’s where you get to show off your research. Tell the interviewer what you’ve learned about the company, and why it’s appealing to you. SPECIFICS are the key here.

Relate those specific examples from your experience to what you’ve learned about the company, their focus, and their market. Look to your personality and what motivates you and how that relates to any details you learned from the ad, your recruiter, your friend who referred you, or from where you learned of this opportunity.

For instance, perhaps their ad stated that they were looking to establish a marketing department from ground up. If you thrive on growth, challenges, making things happen – there’s your answer – along with examples of how you have grown, established, or done market research in a parallel situation.

Share what you can do and why you feel you can make a contribution and benefit the company. This question is about how YOU can benefit the company, not how the company can benefit YOU. Show the VALUE you bring to the table.

Do your homework before EVERY interview! There’s no chance to make a second good impression!

Get a copy of my Interview Cheat Sheet

This handy checklist and editable template will help you organize your thoughts and stay focused before, during and after the interview

We pulled the best tips, tricks, and advice from our archives and put them all in one place just for you.

When you’re preparing for your interview, you need to make sure you cover all of your bases.

My youtube channel contains tons of amazing resources and thankfully a priceless series on Interview success.

I am confident that this will do you a great deal.