What Do Employers Look For on the Interview

This week’s Question: What do employers look for on the interview?

The answer is Personal statements

We know that personal statements – your cover letter and resume – are both essential to communicate what you have to offer. We are all human. We all have good and bad days.

What does the employer want to know?

Almost everything!

  • First of all, employers want to know how you look and feel when you are in their office. They want to know you have the self-confidence and youthfulness that they desire. Employers want to know that you have an attitude that shows in your personal remarks. They are not interested in your childhood or how many children you have or whether you wear your hair in a pony tail or whether you are clean shaven. They want to know what kind of person you are.
  • Secondly, employers want to know how you will fit in with their team. They want to know that you will be a reliable employee who can be counted on to get the job done every time. They do not want to hear that you have telecommuting dreams or that you enjoy playing golf with your elderly neighbors. They want to hear that you have a range of interests and that you are interested in advancement.

Your ability to present yourself is critical to an employer because there is nothing that says you are more valuable than another candidate. Your ability to get on well with your colleagues, your ability to lead and your ability to take the initiative are the qualities that employers are looking for.

Companies have a “one size fits all” approach to interviewing. The more experience you have in the particular area that you are applying for, the more likely that your ” true “size” will be determined by the available position and your level of experience. However, job seekers have a range of abilities and prior experience in that area. Because job descriptions are standardized, and because employers typically prefer to hire individuals who are at least partly responsible for their own schedules, it is up to you to determine your own “size.”


Because the description of your job description may vary slightly from one employer to the next, it is a good idea to write down what you believe your responsibilities are and what you are getting into each year. That may help you to calculate exactly what you are getting into and how much time you can expect to be working in the position. If you don’t have a good estimate of what you can expect, it is not calculated until you are on the job. It is not unusual for a new employee to be told that the position will require 90 hours of work a week. Even if the position is aslective, that is a fairly large amount of hours for someone with no experience. Don’t forget the chance that someone will be hired away during the interview process.

Job interviews are for sharing your past accomplishments and for answering questions about what you can do for the prospective employer. Do not be afraid to talk about your achievements or the skills that you have acquired recently, since employers want to hear examples of how you have demonstrated your ability to do the job you are applying for. Since the interview is designed to find the right candidate to fill a position, it is sometimes necessary to do a little digging. This may mean that you have to obtain the employment file or interview notes from the firm that you have applied to work for. Ask the interviewer to tell you what they are looking for in an employee. If the job description gives you some of the key skills or attributes that the employer is seeking, you will be able to anticipate the questions and prepare answers. Be prepared to ask some questions of the interviewer, since they may want to know about your interests and career aspirations. Some interviewers will also ask you what you think you can offer to the company. This is a good time to tell them about your leadership skills and what you have accomplished in the past employment environment.

The interviewer may ask you how you think your skills and experience will benefit the company. Do not go into a sales talk without having something to back it up. It is necessary to give the interviewer an example of how your skills and experience have made a previous employer better because you want to fit in with the company’s culture. It is okay to say that you think that your experience will benefit the company, as long as you are able to give an example of how that experience has made your employer better. For example, this could mean pointing out how your interpersonal skills may have made a previous employer better because you worked with many customers in a single day. Such a skill would be in your resume’ to describe the task you performed for a single customer.


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