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Monday, March 22, 2010

The Day before the Interview

Finally, you have now an interview! Congratulations! So what’s next? Always remember that your first interview is your first step to get the job. So it is really important that you do well in your initial interview. So, what you can do the day before your interview? What else but to prepare. Successful interview begins with preparation. The title of this article suggests a day before the interview. However, the following guidelines will be more effective days before the interview. My list is mostly based on my personal experiences. But still I hope it will be of help to you whether you are looking for a call center job or not.

1. Research about the job and the company

Given that we all know there are so many call centers in the country today, it is a must that you can convince the interviewer of a call center company that it is your personal decision (even if not really at all) that you have chosen their company over a hundred of other companies. In call centers, the employee turnover is always an issue and they prefer to hire people who will stay in the company for a longer period of time.

You can do this by doing a background research about the company. Survey the company through friends or get information online. You should at least know the company’s vision and mission statements. It will sound more impressive if you can also tell your interviewer the last time their company has won an award or recognition. You can actually use this as one of your reasons why you are interested in their company. Employers, or interviewers, like to know that you have made the effort to know their company, and it enables you to contribute to conversations in the interview.

In doing the research about the company, you might as well learn more about the trade or the call center industry. It will show more confidence if you know more, plus the impression you are giving them in an interview.

It is also advisable that you make a simple outline of the company’s history, products and/or services, and stability. It will serve as your guide as you give your answer but try to minimize the use of it during the interview. It is more helpful while you wait for your turn in the lobby on the day of the interview.

2. Formulate your answers for the possible interview questions

More often than not, initial questions in an interview will come from the resume itself so know your resume. If you have someone prepared your resume, read it, and understand what is written in there. Or else, you will be finding your way out the door sooner than you have expected when you stutter in an interview as you try to remember what is written in your resume.

Plan your strategy by formulating the possible questions you may be asked in an interview and write down your answers and memorize them. You can ask your friends who are already in call centers for interview questions.

3. Practice

Working in this industry (or probably in all types of job) calls for candidates who can multi-task and work independently. So it is important that you show them you are the person they are looking for. You can say anything you want to say to make them believe you are that person. However, the way you deliver them and the choice of words make the difference. Unfortunately, not everyone is born with oozing confidence. True it is that confidence cannot be learned overnight but through constant practice, you can have it.

Practice a mock interview with your friends, or with your family, because it will help you more than simply reading the possible questions and rehearsing the answers alone. Go over your best responses again and again until they become entirely natural, until they just roll off your tongue with the clear spontaneity. This can be achieved only through consistent practice along with thorough memorization.

Lastly, know your answers by heart. You should make your interviewer feel that you mean every word you say. And by truly understanding every answer you have, you will not get lost in the interview.

4. Prepare your attire and shoes

Prepare your smart and conservative standard business suit even if you are seeing a lot of people working in call centers more often than not in cool get-up. Remember, it is an interview and first impressions, as I always say here, are very important.

If you can’t help it not to be stylish, you are still free to show off your flair but be careful. Interviews still follow conservative standard attire because it commands respect and professionalism. For colors, you can choose pastel colors and any color that is pleasing to the eye.

More importantly, wear something that makes you feel confident. When you feel good about yourself in comfortable clothes and shoes, it allows you to easily open up to your interviewers.

Before you sleep, you better have your clothes neatly pressed already and hang it in a clean and dry area in your room, or in a cabinet. So that if there will be brownouts the next morning, you can still look presentable in your interviews. And why don’t you shine your shoes before you take that beauty sleep? It is always better to have everything prepared just in case of any unexpected issues.

5. Prepare your documents and other stuff

Know the saying, prevention is better than cure? This is always true. It is always okay to choose to wake up three hours earlier the next day so that you can still have enough time to prepare everything. But why do it tomorrow if you can do it today (or tonight)? Many interviews’, or pre-interviews’, disasters happen on the day of the interview itself. To minimize the chances of dealing with them, have everything important prepared even before you sleep.

Put in a neat envelop or separate envelops your important documents as needed. It is also wise to bring ‘emergency supplies’ like extra pen, a pair of scissors, scotch tape, and glue. Also, have medicines like for headache and LBM handy so to make sure that nothing can prevent you from getting that interview a success.

6. Have enough sleep

To look fresh and good the next morning, on the day of the interview, it should start with enough sleep from the previous night. It will help you to have focus during the interview the next day. So get enough sleep.

7. Pray

Prayer is always a powerful tool. Confidence coming from the Spirit results to a more peaceful state of mind and healthier body will follow. As it is written in Matthew 6:33, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” So have a godly confidence and if it is the will of God, it will be given to you.

Always remember, every interview counts. Every successful interview you have will take you one step closer toward the potential job offer. If it weren’t successful, make sure you learn from it. Take it as an opportunity to perfect your skills in interviews. Practice makes perfect!

Source: www.collegegrad.com, www.bpotiger.com, and The Philippine Star. Bible verse from New International Version of The Holy Bible.

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