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5 Job Interview Tips For High School Students They Can Apply

A girl research job interview tips for high school students on laptop

As a high school student, you might feel that interviews are an intimidating and awkward experience overall. This is especially true if you don’t have any idea about how a job search goes. But it does not have to be. There are several ways to prepare you for your journey to achieving your career goals. One way is to read on as we dive into helpful job interview tips for high school students like you.

Importance of Preparing High School Students for Job Interview

An interview is not just a simple conversation between an interviewee and the interviewer. Instead, it involves students listening, focusing, thinking, and reacting appropriately to what the other person says. Furthermore, it is a great way to enhance social and communication skills. These life skills will help prepare students for college and jobs, and interviewing is a great way to enhance them.

Interview is part of the real life outside school—with real consequences if students are unprepared and a real success if they do well. It teaches the students to be responsible, adaptable, and hardworking adults. Hence, it is important for teachers, parents or guardians to prepare high school students for interviews.

What Should High School Students Expect from a Job Interview?

There are several things to expect when it comes to the interview process. Interviews vary in the questions asked and even their duration. But in general, the interview process follows the same sequence. Here is a step-by-step description of a typical interview, with details on what to expect throughout the process.

Before the Interview

At this time, the hiring manager has contacted you and asked you to come for an interview. That’s good to hear! It means that the hiring manager was impressed with your resume.

Some hiring managers ask you to provide additional material for further evaluation. Supporting documents for a job application can include a cover letter, LinkedIn profile, educational transcripts, writing samples, portfolios, certifications, a reference list, and letters of recommendation. It’s better to prepare these documents so you can submit them right away.

A High School Student Having Job Interview

During the Interview

When you are called for an in-person interview, you should come early because it might take time for you to commute or drive to the office. Once you arrive, you’ll likely be asked to wait for the interviewer. While waiting, get off your phone and put it in silent mode. Be mindful of the employees around. Besides, if you are busy with your phone, you might be unaware when the interviewer called you in.

On the other hand, when you are asked to come for a virtual interview, the same preparation goes. Just because your interview can be done virtually doesn’t mean that you can slack off. Join the meeting at least 10 minutes before. That way, you won’t have to worry about last-minute technical difficulties.

Interviews can be a one-on-one interview with the manager or supervisor with whom you would be working most closely at the company. It can also be a panel interview wherein the manager is accompanied by a department head and the human resources representative. Occasionally, you will be interviewed by a human resources representative or manager.

Whatever the case, anticipate several personal, work-related, or situational questions. Be prepared to answer questions regarding your experience, skills, and achievements. No interviewer will have the same questions, so it’s best to prepare for the most common interview questions you’re likely to encounter.

After the Interview

After you leave the interview, it is good to send your interviewer a thank-you email. A simple ‘thank you’ will go a long way, and it’s a great gesture should you work there in the future.

While you’re waiting to hear from the hiring manager, it’s also the time for you to determine whether or not the role is a good fit for you. After all, the interview provided you with an outlook on the day-to-day activities, the company’s culture, and the work environment. Consider these factors to personally decide if this is a role and workplace you could see yourself in.

You should expect to hear back from the hiring manager within a week. In some cases, you might not hear back that soon. If that’s the case, it is acceptable to send a follow-up email. When you hear back, you’ll either be called to discuss the job offer, proceed with a final interview, or notified that they have chosen another candidate.

Remember that no interview is a waste of your time, even if you did not get the job or you decided not to take it. The interview process has provided you with valuable experience. Every interview gives you an opportunity to practice your communication skills.

Common Job Interview Questions for High School Students

Acing your job search depends on how well you have prepared for the interview questions. Check out these common questions to guide you.

A Woman Prepared With Job Interview Tips For High School Students Answering Question

1. Tell me about yourself.

This question might be a simple one, but it is hard to choose what is worth sharing. How you answer this question will likely steer the conversation; so be sure to share something interesting and meaningful.

As a high school student, you probably don’t have any work experience. Hence, you can tell them about your family, your hobbies and interests, or activities outside school. It shows that aside from your academics, you are engaging yourself in the community.

2. Why did you apply to our company?

Gain enough edge and learn more about the company. You can easily find details about them on their website or social media pages. These details can give you a glimpse of the company culture and how you fit in at work.

Aside from this question, they might also ask, “Why did you apply for this position?” Be sure to read the job description and align your skills that match the role.

3. Can you share a difficult experience you had and how you handled it?

Interviewers ask this question to gauge your determination and persistence when facing difficulties. It could be related to school, your home, or an extracurricular activity. Describe the scenario briefly but spend the majority of your response emphasizing what you did to overcome the obstacle.

4. What are your career goals?

Interviewers ask future-focused questions to make sure you have ambition and goals for your future. You can divide those goals into short-term goals and long-term goals. Be prepared to share some of your aspirations with the interviewer. However, not everyone has already decided what course and job to take. If you’re not clear about what you want to achieve, review these career planning tips for students like you.

After the series of questions, expect that the interviewer might ask if you have any questions about the position or the company. Asking questions shows genuine interest. It will also help you make an informed decision if the position fits your skills and career goals. Upon concluding the interview, do not expect the hiring manager to tell you definitively whether or not you have the job. However, you are free to ask when you will hear back from them. Also, don’t forget to thank your interviewer before you leave.

Job Interview Tips for High School Students

Now that you are familiar with the interview process and the common interview questions, let’s dive into foolproof job interview tips for high school students like you. Heed these advices to secure your target job post.

1. Do your research.

It is important research about the company and the position you’re applying for. It helps you understand the values, culture, and demands of the job. Not only that; doing your research shows the interviewer your interest and commitment to the job.

Browse through their company website or social media pages. You can also read about the industry they are into. That way, you’ll be able to align your answers and engage more with the hiring manager. Here are some guide questions to start with when doing your research:

  • What does the company do and what do they stand for?
  • Who does this company serve or who buys their products?
  • What types of skills and training do their employees have?
  • What type of environment do people in this job work in?

2. Practice makes perfect.

Anticipate the questions and prepare your answers ahead of time. You don’t want to scramble for words in the actual interview. Yet, remember not to be stiff and make it seem rehearsed. You can write your answers to potential questions the interviewer can ask you about; or you can use the START method when answering questions. This helps you to better assess how you respond to certain work situations.

Either way, practice your statements in front of the mirror or ask for the help of a friend. That way, you can observe distracting habits and filler words and prevent them in your actual interview. Doing a practice or mock interview with someone else will help you feel more confident and prepared going into the real one.

A Girl High School Student Wearing Blouse For Interview

3. Dress the part.

Interviewees are recommended to dress one level above the position they’re applying for. This means that usual shirts, pants and skirts are not allowed. Gentlemen can wear nice button-down shirt or polo and slacks. You can’t go wrong with wearing a tie. Meanwhile, ladies should plan to wear slacks or a skirt and a blouse. Don’t forget to wear appropriate shoes for the outfit.

In addition, you should tone down your jewelry, make sure your hair is neatly groomed, and wear appropriate makeup for the girls. Be sure to prepare your attire and try it on ahead of time to see if your attire fits well.

4. Be confident and natural.

In your interview, be your best self! Work on your body language, posture, and hand gestures. While you did your research and prepared some answers, don’t make it seem like you rehearsed. Be natural, speak slowly and clearly.

5. Smile.

Finally, don’t forget that a smile goes a long way. Be sure to greet them with a smile. It shows confidence and friendliness. Don’t forget to say your goodbye with a smile of gratitude. As noted previously, this also leaves a good impression on the interviewer.

Consult with Our Career Experts for More Job Interview Tips

For high school students with little to no experience, career planning is an integral part of your professional journey. Hence, preparation is key.

Now that you have read the job interview tips for high school students, you surely can secure that job post. You can also search for job search tips and resources from experts to prepare you for your journey to achieve your career goals. We also provide  resume writing services that can help you land your target profession and realize your dreams. Connect with us today!

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10 Tips To Ace It

A woman having internship interview

A successful career is within your reach when you’re ready to face the professional world. It starts with preparation, from college to internship, then to pursuing your career goals. Sounds easy? Yes, when you know what you’re doing. However, this isn’t always the case. Hence, if you’re a college student, we’ll give you some tips on how to prepare for an internship interview.

Preparing for what’s ahead is important in pursuing your chosen career. Your coursework and training programs are critical in preparing you for your future profession. Your experience is your stepping stone to achieving your goals. That’s why you need to make sure your experience in college and internship can give you the exposure you need.

What Should You Expect in an Internship Interview?

Internship programs prepare you for the real world. They immerse you in what it’s like to work in the corporate field or in the industry you wish to be part of. Plus, it’s an opportunity for you to enhance your skills, gain expertise in the field, and build connections. It also gives you an advantage when you apply for your first job, especially if it’s relevant work experience. Thus, you have to take your internship search seriously.

Before we dive into some steps on how to prepare for an internship interview, here’s a quick rundown of things you can expect from it.

  • While it’s customary to shake hands, since the pandemic, it has become more common to exchange pleasantries by simply nodding.
  • The interviewer could ask you how you found out about their company and why you chose them.
  • Sharing your interests and the reason you chose your degree is expected by the interviewer.
  • It’s normal to feel nervous, but try to focus on being professional by minding your body language.
  • If you made the cut, expect that the interviewer will ask you about when you can start. With that, it’s best to decide on the date beforehand.
  • Some companies offer callbacks, so don’t lose hope if you don’t get an answer right away.

Common Internship Interview Questions

“How to prepare for an internship interview?” Run through some common interview questions online and try answering them. This way, you can practice expressing yourself fluently and on point. To help you be confident in answering even the most difficult questions, here’s a list of common internship interview topics and questions.

A Man Confident With Three Interviewer Because He Read How To Prepare For An Internship Interview

1. Tell me about yourself.

This is the most common interview question because it’s usually asked to build rapport. Hence, highlight your education, your interests, career plans, and things you haven’t included on your internship resume.

2. Why do you want an internship at this company?

This question is an opportunity for you to impress the interviewer with how well you know the company. You can also share how confident you are about their processes and their stand in the industry.

3. What are your career goals?

Just like in job interviews, your career goals are important in internships as it gives you and the interviewer an idea of whether you’re on the right track or not. Remember, internships aim to prepare you for your future career. Thus, its relevance to your target profession is vital.

4. Why do you want to be in this industry?

Aside from your career goals, the reason you’re pursuing a specific industry says a lot about how you want to go about your career. It also validates if your career goals are aligned with the work you want to pursue. Plus, being an intern in a field that you want could be a good motivation for you to learn and excel in what you do.

5. What can you bring to the company?

An internship allows you to learn from the professionals in the field. However, companies don’t prefer to get interns just so they can teach students about the real world. They want people who are skilled, competent, and can be helpful to the department. In that case, make sure to highlight your strengths and knowledge of the industry.

6. How good are you at working with other people?

Collaboration is needed to thrive in internships. Since you’ll be working with the company’s employees, you need to learn how to work well with them. You can answer this question by sharing an experience where you’re able to demonstrate teamwork and get remarkable results.

7. How would you handle conflict with your school and internship schedules?

This is a tricky question because you can’t say that you’ll give up one. You have to emphasize that you can make sure to balance your time for school work and internships.

8. We have a long list of candidates; why should we choose you?

This could be the hardest question of the interview. With all the qualified students looking for an internship, you need to convince the interviewer that you’re the best fit for the job.

Highlight what you can bring to the table without sounding arrogant. You can focus on your understanding of the job, relevant experience, knowledge of the company’s culture and your compatibility with it, and how you can be an asset to the team.

Bonus Internship Questions

  • Walk me through your resume.
  • Where do you see yourself in 5 to 10 years?
  • Have you experienced working with a difficult person? How did you deal with it?
  • What’s your proudest moment?
  • Tell me about a time you’ve faced a difficult situation that needed your decision. What did you do?
  • How do you manage a tight schedule?
  • How well do you accept criticism?

How to Prepare for an Internship Interview

Now that you know what to expect and some common questions your interviewer might ask you, let’s dig into some tips on how to prepare for an internship interview. Knowing this helps you impress the hiring managers, which leads to securing an internship. Here are 10 internship interview tips.

1. Research about the company.

First on our list of tips on how to prepare for an internship interview is to run a background check on your target company. Doing this gives you an idea of the company’s values, mission and vision, work culture, and ethics. It helps you answer the questions and leaves a mark that you’re very interested in the position.

2. Create an elevator pitch.

The interview is the best venue to market yourself and showcase how capable you are for the job. That’s why it’s important to prepare how you’ll present yourself during this big moment. Think of how you’ll introduce yourself: brief yet striking.

3. Get all the details.

Before the interview, make sure that you have the necessary information, such as the time, place (is it virtual or face-to-face?), and things you need to bring. If you have the chance, get to know your interviewer.

Expert Tip

Search for the name of your interviewer on LinkedIn to see their professional background. Knowing this gives you an idea of what they’re like.

4. Search for interview questions.

Another important tip on how to prepare for an internship interview is to search for possible interview questions. As mentioned earlier, when you have an idea of what the interviewer will say, it eases your nerves.

5. Plan what to wear at least a day before the interview.

Prepare your interview outfit beforehand. This prevents you from rushing on the day of the interview. Plus, it gives you time to choose what’s best considering the type of interview, date, and where the interview will take place.

6. Get ready for the big day.

There’s no better way of preparing for the interview than a mock interview. You can ask someone to practice with you. You can use the interview questions above as the flow of conversation.

If your interview is online, you can practice by preparing your equipment by running a tech test. Record yourself while answering the questions so you can review it afterwards. While watching it, observe the way you talk and your gestures.

An Intern Highlights Qualification To Employer

7. Highlight your qualifications.

During the interview, make sure to highlight your qualifications. You can prepare for this by listing your skills, strengths, credentials, accomplishments, and relevant experience. That way, you’ll be able to lay them down in the interview.

8. Bring the necessary documents.

Before going to the interview venue, check all the documents you need to bring. Take an extra copy of your resume and bring your portfolio, if you have one. It’s best to prepare these documents in case you’re asked.

9. Prepare questions for the end.

Aside from answering common interview questions, you also need to prepare for questions you can ask the interviewer. Asking the interviewer gives them an impression that you’re interested in taking the internship.

10. Send thank-you and follow-up letters.

After the interview, get ready to send a thank-you letter and express how much you value the time you spent and that you’re looking forward to their answer. If you haven’t heard from them, you can send a follow-up letter.

What’s Next After an Internship Interview

Knowing how to prepare for an internship interview is critical to landing a program. However, what you’ll do after is also crucial. This time is your opportunity to prepare for the next step—the internship itself and the requirements needed for it.

In addition, while waiting for the interview results, do things that will enhance your skills. You can attend seminars and equip yourself with the knowledge necessary for the career path you want to take. Don’t forget to work on the requirements that hiring managers might ask you to submit.


  • Preparation for an internship interview includes getting ready for face-to-face, phone, and virtual interviews.
  • Search for common interview questions and try answering them.
  • Do research about the company and the position you want to pursue.
  • Read through the job description and the requisites for the post.
  • Follow tips from career experts on how to prepare for an internship interview.
A Woman Career Advisor Know How To Prepare For An Internship Interview Holding Laptop

Land Your Target Internship Program with the Help of Experts

Pursuing your career requires preparation—from setting your career goals, to taking a degree and immersing yourself in an internship, to applying for your first job. There are several ways you can do to ensure you’re ready to embark on this journey.

Guess what? You can arm yourself with tips not just on how to prepare for an internship interview, but also on other aspects of job search with Resume Professional Writers. We have career advice written by industry experts and career coaches to guide you in your job search. Not only that; we also have articles about interviews, job hunting, workplace culture, resume and cover letter writing, and resume services reviews.

What are you waiting for? Visit our website and leverage our career tips to better prepare for success.

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How To Answer This Question

How To Answer This Question

To ensure that they would hire the best person for the job role, hiring managers surprise job searchers with tough questions. Answer “why are you applying for this position?” fluently and take a step closer to your target job post. Read these tips and prepare for the job interview to ace your next career!

Why Hiring Managers Ask This Interview Question

Job interview is one of the crucial steps in the hiring process. The hiring managers ask questions that would gauge the applicants’ skills and attitude. At this stage, they also ask questions that would challenge job searchers, such as “why are you applying for this position?” Presented are reasons behind this query.

1. To verify whether you’ve done your research

One of the perks of online job hiring is the ability of job searchers to send resumes to multiple companies. Other job searchers could even apply through social media pages or leave their resumes on the company website. Because of convenience, there is a tendency to email blast resumes without thorough reading. Learn about the company before heading to the interview. This question is asked to check whether you reviewed the job description.

2. To ensure that you know the job post

Hiring managers also check your knowledge about the job post. You can mention the platform where you applied and how you found them. Don’t send resumes without reviewing the job roles, for those are the crucial aspect of your target post.

3. To see your enthusiasm

Knowing the job role is a sign of your interest in winning the target job post. Reviewing the job role could help you answer other tough questions, too. For instance, knowing the job role and the core values of the team can ground your statements. These could also help you create more impressive answers.

4. To find out your goals and career path

During the job interview, they also want to know your career goals and whether it’s aligned to the job post. Of course, hiring managers avoid hiring uncertain staff that would leave the team immediately. They want to hire the right staff through thorough screening since the job process takes great time and effort. They want people who plan to stay longer and progress in the career pathway.

5. To get a glimpse of your role in the team

Aside from skills, hiring managers also check the candidates’ attitude and role in the team. They want to hire team players who are adaptive and leaders of their own. Show that you are a valuable staff and leave a good impression during the interview through well-versed answers.

Job Interview Between Recruiter And Applicant

How to Answer the Question “Why Are You Applying For This Position?”

Although job interviews seem tough, there are ways on how to ace it. Here are tips on how you can prepare for a job interview.

1. Research the company.

Know the company and gain enough edge in this cutthroat competition. You can easily find little details about them on their website or social media pages. These details can give you a glimpse of the entire company culture and give you an overview of their expectations from job searchers like you.

2. Showcase your skills.

This is also a great chance to sell your skills to the hiring managers. Upon knowing the job roles based on your research, you can relate your skills to your answers. Talk about these skills and how they make you the ideal candidate for the job post without sounding too boastful. Take note, emphasize relevant skills and discuss related works based on the topic. The resume can take care of the other skills.

3. Relate to your career goals.

After selling your skills, you can also share to them your career plans. This is important because hiring managers are keen on this part; after all, they want long-term staff on their employ. Sharing your career goals can also give them a bigger picture of what they can provide you to become a better team member.

4. Show your eagerness.

Apart from the answers, they are also watching your tone, attitude, and body language. Answer their questions with enough confidence and use positive words. You can also ask smart questions to show that you are eager to learn more. However, take caution in asking obvious questions, for it might be a sign that you didn’t do enough research.

5. Be specific.

Since you have enough details about the job role and thought about your skills, you can mention specific events from your previous company that would prove your achievements. Aside from that, you can also mention specific trait or value of the company that attracted you to apply and join their team.

Applicant Answering The Question Why Are You Applying For This Position

Why Are You Applying For This Position: Example Answers and Tips

Here are sample answers for this interview question.

Sample 1:

The experiences I have gained over the past four years as a content writer prepared me for more career opportunities. As mentioned in your company’s website, the team is expanding and I believe that being part of these projects will improve my skills while contributing to the company’s growth.

This answer shows that you have read about the plans of the team. The answer also includes your plan to use experiences and skills to help both you and your team grow.

Sample 2:

While I enjoy working in my previous team, I believe that my six years of experience as a graphic artist is enough to gain skills to progress in my career. As mentioned in the job post, this role offers great chances to help me develop my skills and create designs for industry leaders like you.

Compared to sample 1, this answer relates to more seasoned job searchers and their readiness to take on the next job role.

Successful Job Interview Shown By Handshake Between Hiring Manager And Job Seeker

Prepare for the Job Post with Effective Job Interview Tips

Job interviews can appear as mind boggling, especially for fresh graduates and entry-level job seekers. However, proper preparation will help you answer tough questions such as “why are you applying for this position?” Aside from reading common interview questions, you can also gain more edge with a topnotch resume! Partner with our resume experts and prepare for the job with the best resume and interview coaching tips. Contact us for more!

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Affordable Job Search Resources to Get You Hired Faster: Job Search Journey

Affordable Job Search Resources to Get You Hired Faster: Job Search Journey

A job search, at any career level, can be a stressful and overwhelming time. While each job search journey is unique, there are typical stages that many job seekers share. Think of these stages as your recipe for success!

As an award-winning resume writer and job search strategist; I partner with executive job seekers on the creation of compelling career tools (executive resumes, LinkedIn profiles, bios, cover letters, etc.) here at Career Impressions.

Yet, many of my clients need more than just a resume. They need support with interview preparation, social media engagement, or salary negotiations. I needed a way to provide these professionals with even more support.

I’m also regularly approached by non-executive job seekers who are looking for quality support at an affordable cost. Many people are unable to invest in one-on-one assistance.

To help, I teamed up with 2 other respected colleagues to create Job Search Journey, the first marketplace for job seekers, with resources to support job search, from application to offer.

No matter what job search stage you’re in, there are affordable, quality resources to help you find your perfect role easier and faster.


How to Excel at the 7 Stages of Job Search


Stage 1: Exploration and Career Clarity

It’s time to dig deep and discover what it is you WANT to do. Throwing a wide net often leads to roles that aren’t the right fit for you. And if you’re not happy in the position, you won’t excel at the job.

To define your dream job, you need a deep understanding of yourself – your values, strengths, and personality traits. How do they all come together to fit your career? What type of job do you want next? Who is hiring? Finally, how do you plan to organize your search efforts?


Featured Resources:

 Career Change Exploration Worksheet

Job Search Scheduling Guide



Stage 2: Research

Now that you know what you want to do, move to where you want to be. Is there a dream company that you want to work for? A type of work culture you crave?

The more you know about the organization, the problems they face, and the solutions you offer, the easier it will be to sell yourself as the perfect fit. Research is one of the most vital steps of the job search process.


Featured Resources:

Building a List of Target Companies

A Guide for Conducting Job Search Research


Stage 3: Career Marketing Materials

It’s time to sell yourself. Your resume, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile are critical marketing documents that need to WORK for you.

A standout resume tells a compelling career story and positions you as the perfect candidate for the role. You want to write for people while making your resume ATS (application tracking system) friendly. You also need a strong online presence on social media sites like LinkedIn. Ensure every career tool is carefully compiled.


Featured Resource: Resume Creation and Customization Kit



Stage 4: Networking & Outreach

Build your network. You never know where your next opportunity may come from. A professional community can be a vast pool of options to help you fast-track your job search.

Make sure you talk to lots of people during your job search. People hire people. Identify decision-makers and conduct outreach — not to ask for a job, but to ask for information, intel, leads, or referrals to support search efforts.


Featured Resource: Informational Interviews, Email Templates



Stage 5: Interviews

You’ve got your foot in the door – now you must show them why you’re the best candidate for the job. Knowing how to ace an interview is one of the most critical job search skills to master. Today’s interview has changed; be prepared for phone, video, AI technology, and in-person interviews so that you can put your best foot forward.


Featured Resource: Ace the Interview, Get Prepped Quick Kit



Stage 6: Negotiations

The role is yours! Now how do you win the best possible offer? Statistics show that negotiating your first offer raises your wage an average of 7.4%. Have a plan, know your worth, and demonstrate how your contributions will benefit the organization.


Featured Resource: Get a Head Start in Negotiations



Stage 7: Future-proofing your career

Networking is not a one-and-done event – avoid only reaching out to your network when you are searching for a new role. Stay at it even after you’ve landed your dream job. Continuing to nurture your network and build a personal brand prepares you for the unexpected and keeps you top of mind for any other opportunities.

Remain active on LinkedIn. Engage with your network regularly. Continue to invest in yourself and your skills to remain competitive, even if you aren’t looking for a job.


Featured Resource: Get Active on LinkedIn, Build Thought Leadership



Job Search Journey is a one-stop marketplace where job seekers can find scripts, guides, and templates designed by award-winning resume writers and job search strategists. This marketplace has everything to support a successful job search from start to finish.

Where are you in your job search journey? If you are not currently job seeking, consider sharing this post with a job seeker in your life who could benefit from this marketplace. Or consider gifting a job seeker in your life resources from the site to help improve their journey.



For a limited time, I am offering “6 Scripts for Job Search Success” for FREE when you use the coupon code CITOM21 at checkout.

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Executive-Level Interview: How to Prepare & Win Your Dream Job

Executive-Level Interview Career Impressions_ (002)

Are you looking to brush up on your executive-level interview skills? If it’s been a while since you’ve been on the other side of the desk, these executive interview tips will set you up for success.

How will you make a knockout first impression and position yourself as the perfect fit for the role? Knowing how to ace an interview is one of the most critical job search skills you can master.


Preparing for your executive-level interview  

Do your research

It may seem obvious but doing your research and digging deep makes a difference. Taking the time to learn as much as you can about the industry, company, and interviewer demonstrates that you are serious about the job.  It will also make you feel more confident about potential issues you’ll discuss during the interview.

  • What is about this company that stands out?
  • Are they having any specific issues right now?
  • What skills and experience do they value?
  • Who are the key players of the organization?
  • What is the company culture?
  • Who is conducting my interview, and what are their key accomplishments?


Prepare your answers

When prepping for your executive-level interview, it is a good idea to practice how you will answer common questions. Brainstorm a list of questions you expect they will ask, and prepare and practice your answers. (Yes, this includes any tough questions you hope they don’t ask, like job transitions or gaps in employment).


Create a list of questions

While some things may come up during the interview, it’s a good idea to have a few solid questions going in. Great questions can make you stand out from other applicants. Aim for open-ended questions to get a conversation going.

Possible questions to ask:

  • How is success measured in this role?
  • How will the first 3-6 months look?
  • Which skills would you consider to be most important for this position?


Be prepared to be virtual

Since the pandemic began, over 86% of recruiters are conducting virtual interviews. It’s best to do a test to make sure your equipment is ready to go. Is your camera lens clean, and do you have proper lighting? Is your background distraction-free? Set up your space to make sure you look your best.


Acing Your Executive Interview

Deliver a confident introduction

Making a great first impression sets the tone for the interview. How can you instantly engage the interviewer? Consider asking them a question that shows you have done company research, or lead with an opening remark that makes a personal connection.


Show, rather than tell

Have specific examples with metrics to prove the results you have achieved for other employers. Numbers speak and can help this potential employer envision you getting the same results for them.


Paint yourself into the picture

How can you get them to picture a future with you? While you want to display your past work experience and accomplishments, you also want to get them to imagine what you can do for them.

How can you demonstrate critical thinking about their current issues? Can you provide insights into problems and how you would overcome them?


Make a connection

At an executive-level interview, employers aren’t just thinking, “can this person do the job?” They also want to see how you fit into the company culture. Will you be a good fit within the existing executive team?

Let your personality shine through. What do you have in common with the interviewer? How can you show excitement for your work and the company?


Practice storytelling

Using a storytelling format when sharing your accomplishments is much more engaging than stating facts.

Consider the STAR method.

Situation – Set the scene.

Task – Define the job or problem.

Action – Describe the specific action you took.

Result – Share your outcome (with specific metrics).


Reference previous chats

If you are on the second or third round of interviews, and a similar conversation pops up, you could say something like, “Lisa made a great point when we chatted. I agree with her views on…..”

This shows that you were engaged in previous conversations and positions you as a team player (and it gives them an idea of how you would fit into the team).



Think of your executive-level interview as a two-way street. Do your research, prepare for tough questions, aim to make a personal connection, and you’ll show you’re the missing piece of the puzzle! They are interviewing you, but you also need to decide if this company is a good fit.


For more tips on acing your interview, check out my E-book How to Prepare for an Employment Interview.