Job Interview Strategies for Success

Make a Good First Impression at Job Interview

In the United States, generally a job interview is designed for a specific position. Therefore, a focus of the interview will be to determine whether the applicant is suitable for the position. When we introduce you to a company that you might be interested, our recruiting consultants will explain in detail about the job description and requirements as well as the ideal candidate the company is looking for. Based on such information we provide you, think about why you are a strong candidate for the position. The interview can be a challenging part of job hunting. We will support you so you can do your best at the interview.

Job Interview Strategies for Success:QUICK USA

Fundamentals of Interview

Questions that are asked at the interview are somewhat different depending on the type of job you are applying for. If you have an interview for an engineer positions, questions tend to be more technical. However, there are common interview questions asked regardless of a job type. The common interview questions include:
  • A. Self-Introduction
  • B. Reason for why you want to do this job
  • C. Reasons for leaving your last job
  • D. Your knowledge about the company
  • E. Skills and experience
  • F. Your strengths and weaknesses
  • G. How you managed a work-related trouble in the past
  • H. Your Future Career Plan

Prepare answers both in Japanese and English. Before the interview make a summary of your work experience, and make sure you relate your experience to the position you are applying for. You can also mention your future career plans to show positive attitudes towards the work.

You should also be able to answer questions like "What do you know about our company"? and "Why do you want to work here?". Gathering basic background information on employers is crucial to successful interview. The company's website is a good source for learning about an employer. Be prepared to explain how corporate philosophy and culture resonate your value as well as how you can utilize your skills and experience in the position.

Avoid negative comments about why you are left your last job. Instead, you should mention something positive; for example, you are looking for a new challenge so you can grow your career.

When answering questions about your strengths, always keep the job description in mind and focus on strengths you have that are required for the job. The interviewer may lose interest in you if you mention strengths that are irrelevant to the positon.

When addressing questions about your weakness, no matter what weakness you select, try to put a positive spin on your answer.

Also, be prepared to answer to a question such as “how you have managed a work-related trouble in the past”. At the end of the interview, the interviewer often asks, "Do you have any questions?". Sometimes not having any questions is considered you have low interest in the position or company. It is better to prepare some questions in advance to show your enthusiasm and interest.

It is said that people make judgements of others in a matter of seconds. In a short interview time, the weight of the first impression will increase. What you wear plays a big role in the first impression. You want to make sure you look professional and appropriate for the interview.

Dressing for interview in the United States is not much different from Japan. Your outfit and hairstyle should convey cleanliness and professionalism. You should wear a suit to the interview. For men, a black, navy blue, or grey suit with white collared shirt is your best option. Avoid loud colors and flashy ties and pick something that suits you well.

Similarly, wearing a suit to the interview is also common for women. A black, navy blue and grey suit is the best option. If you do not have a suit, we still recommend you wear a jacket. For your bottoms, you can wear either skirt or pants. You should wear a matching jacket and pants, dress shirt coordinating socks and dress shoes for making a fresh-looking impression.

Check where your interview will take place in advance. You should know how long it takes from your house to the venue and means of transportation. The most important thing on the interview day is that you are on time. Make sure you arrive at least 10 minutes before the interview begins.

The first impression is very important. Start by introducing yourself with smile at the beginning of the interview. When answering a question, look at the interviewer’s eyes and speak clearly. If there are more than one interviewer, make sure to have eye contacts with other interviewers as well. When the interview is over, don't forget to thank them for their time.

Bring your resume, a notebook and pencil with you and write down if there are any important announcements. Also, do not forget to turn off your cell phone before the interview.

A good communication is a key for the job interview. You should listen eagerly when the interviewer is talking, and when you reply you should think about people’s feelings. Remember you are “playing catch”; a good communication is not generated from a situation where one person keeps talking and does not give another person a chance to speak.

In the United States, it is considered a good manner to send a thank you letter (email) after the interview. A thank you letter should be sent on the same day as your interview.
The letter should include:
A. Express thanks
B. What you think about the interview (that shows your interest)
C. Your interest in the position
D. Additional questions you may have and also state you are available for any questions
E. Your contact information.
If you have the interview with the company that we have introduced to you, we could send a thank-you letter on your behalf, so feel free to contact us.

More people are using social networking services (SNS) such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Manage your pages (posts and pictures) when you start job hunting as employers sometimes check the applicant’s social media profiles. In addition, email is a common communication tool. Make sure you use a professional looking email address.

  • Running late for interview
  • Your cell phone rings during the interview
  • Look stiff and not smiling because you are nervous
  • Act and speak too friendly as if you were talking to your friend
  • Playing with an interviewer's business card or a pen during a conversation
  • You tell them “I don’t have a question” when the interviewer asks you if you have questions about the positon or company
  • Ask about the salary and benefits before other questions
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