Hello my PR enthusiasts,
Summer 2014 is almost here. Many students like myself are hungrily searching for that specific internship that we want. Not only are students looking for internships but they are preparing to NAIL that first interview! I am writing this blog to give you some real world advice and tell you the do’s and don’ts during the interview process.
I recently had an interview with Meet The Press, which has been the longest running television program on T.V. It is a politically based news show that airs every Sunday morning. Coming into this interview as a Sophomore in college was nerve racking. However when preparing for an interview, you want to enter knowing as much as you can about the company (especially if that is where you want to work). And TRUST me they played hard ball. Meet the Press doesn’t play any other way. So KNOW YOUR STUFF.
1. RESEARCH RESEARCH RESEARCH
- I cannot emphasize how important it is to know everything you can about the place you are interning for.
- Know HOW and WHEN the company was founded.
- Know the past and present leaders
- Most importantly know the companies goals and their message
- Show that you can contribute to ideas and have examples of how you can contribute.
- Constantly keep in touch with whatever company or network you are applying for.
Question from Meet The Press: If you were producing the show next week who would you have on to discuss the Ukraine situation?
Answer: I answered Hillary Clinton because I knew the previous Sunday they interviewed Secretary of State John Kerry on the same subject.
- Know recent changes or recent news that has happened in the organization. Recent can include the past six months!
Question from Meet The Press: Who did you enjoy the most on the show the past six months excluding Kerry from last weekend.
Answer: A good answer to this question would be someone obviously other than Kerry, however John Kerry has been on Meet The Press multiple times. He could be a possible answer… however Newt Gingrich or Benjamin Netanyahu would be a wiser choice because it shows you have watched the show more than once. It comes back to knowing the place you want to intern for. DO NOT just focus on news from them the past two weeks but focus on their past history as well.
** It is more important to give a confident answer even if you may not think it is the best answer. Giving an answer without hesitation will set you apart from those who allow nerves to control their emotions and answers.
- Show an interest in the company and ask questions about the internship and about the company.
-Because when you show an interest in the company’s cause they will show an interest in you. These places you are applying for are looking for passion and a very hard work ethic.
-Showing your love for the company and the work they do will help set you apart from other interns.
- There are duties that are normally listed under the internship you apply for. Make sure to clearly state that the duties outlined with in the internship responsibilities align with your personal goals.
- When you show them you know what they expect from you and more importantly that you can accomplish it, makes your chances of earning that spot easier.
- Make sure you make these goals attainable. NEVER exaggerate when in an interview about your skill set. Be honest, but highlight your strengths without being cocky.
3. After the Interview
- After EVERY interview hand write a thank you! This makes a difference in how you will be remembered, whether you get the internship or not, this will set you apart from those who chose not to write or send an electronic thank you note.
- It shows your professionalism as well as character. It shows the employers you understand that they took time out of their day to give you a chance. They chose you to possibly represent their company and you want to make sure you leave a lasting impression. Again if you do not get the internship they could still be a possible employer for the future.
Example thank you:
Thank you for taking the time to discuss the internship opportunity with me yesterday. The job seems to align with my goals and skills. I have a strong desire to work for you and look forward to hearing from you regarding this position.
If you have any questions regarding an interview you are up for please don’t hesitate to ask! Stick with our blog we have some new clients this fall and exciting events happening in the near future for PRSSA!