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Profitt Report: Ace your first job interview

Preparation is the key to acing your job interivew. Photo credit: Johnny Magnusson

Whether you’ve just graduated college or you’re re-entering the work force, that first job interview is a doozy. Job interviews get easier the more often you do them, so it’s normal to be nervous during your first few.

“No matter how prepared I was, I felt those nerves,” said Amanda Bauerschmidt, a recent Saginaw Valley State University graduate.

Bauerschmidt said little pep talk helped her overcome those butterflies and get through her job interview with Goodwill.

“’This is going to go fine, this is something you're passionate about, you did the preparation’ and then as soon as we met, we clicked from there,” she said.

She was offered the job soon after. However, the process of finding this job wasn’t as simple as it sounds. After graduation in December 2016, Bauerschmidt went on a spree of job interviews.

“It was a little defeating,” she said, “I wasn't hearing anything back from anyone so for a while I was getting a little bit discouraged.”

However, SVSU career services director Mike Major said don’t look at those interviews as a bad thing: look at them as practice. First, work on your answer to the inevitable question, “can you tell me a bit about yourself?”

“Don’t give the entire history of where you're from but an idea of what town you're from and then quickly move into what excites you about the position you're currently seeking,” Major said.

Next, develop an “interview day” routine. Get plenty of sleep and pick out a conservative suit.

“Have breakfast or have lunch, don't go into your interview hungry so that way you're kind of feeling comfortable,” Major said.

Last, Bauerschmidt said she used that interview time to feel out these different companies. Just like hiring managers are interviewing you, you need to make sure this is somewhere you want to spend 40 or more hours every week.

“Right away when I got there I just felt more comfortable, I could tell just the environment, the way that she was talking, it felt like it was going to be the right place,” she said.

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