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How to Be a Standout Candidate and Land Your Dream Job

Going for a job today looks very different than it did in the past.

The most significant change is the effects of the explosion of technology onto the scene.

Applications, resumes and portfolios are completed and sent digitally.

While some may see this as a disadvantage, just the opposite is true.

Today’s technology allows you to make more connections – before and after your interview – than ever before.

Let’s take a look at how to be a savvy candidate in the current job market.

Here’s a clue – it starts with an interview plan!

Make sure your online profiles are complete

In this online world, people meet you before they meet you.

It’s vital that you have a LinkedIn profile that’s complete because potential employers will be looking at it to get a feel for who you are and what you’re all about.

Your profile should include your job experiences and other relevant life experiences.

Because your future employers want to know what you’re like, make sure that your profile shows what your interests are and gives a good overall picture of you.

Make smart connections before the interview

Once you’ve nailed down an interview, it’s time to get to work on the next phase of your interview plan.

Go to the LinkedIn profile for the company with which you’re interviewing and take a look at the people who do the kind of job that you’re trying to land.

You can even make contact with someone and ask her questions that will help you as you prepare for sitting down with the interviewer. It’s almost like a pre-interview before the real thing!

This is good for you for a couple reasons:

  • HR will like the fact that you’ve done some research and that you’re seeking to understand the culture of the company.
  • There’s now someone inside the company who could vouch for you.

Be remembered for something before the interview

Sending a thank-you before you go in for the interview has some benefits for you. Thanking someone for giving you the opportunity to interview is easy but can pack a big punch.

You’re putting your name in their minds and attaching it to something warm and personal.

When you’re remembered for establishing gratitude you’re essentially attaching positivity to your candidacy for the job.

Deliver well during the interview

Your task of making a good impression begins right away. Make eye contact and smile!

Here are a few more tips to nail the interview:

  • Compliment the interviewer. Before you launch into talking about your skills, find something to comment on that’s positive.
  • Anticipate the questions. Communicate your readiness and ability to talk about yourself.
  • Position yourself as an employee. For the 45-60 minutes that you’re in the interview, behave as if you’re already an employee of the company. Talk about the top 10 trends in the industry currently and discuss viable solutions that you have for issues they may be facing.
  • Don’t forget to pause. Take a moment to slow down and make sure the person who is interviewing you is hearing you and that you’re also hearing him.

Leave a lasting impression

Don’t leave remembering you to chance.

After the interview, along with a thank you, send a summary of what you talked about during your interview.

This will not only ensure that they remember you, it’ll also give them a great impression!

From the interviewer’s perspective, this leaves a significant impression. If you’re thorough enough to take the time to make and send them a summary of your interview, how much more effort would you put into the projects you would work on for them?

A little planning goes a long way

Taking the time to properly prepare for an interview will greatly increase your chances of landing the job.

Making connections prior to the interview, showing gratitude before and after, and following up with a summary will show your prospective employer that you’re serious about what you do and that you would be an asset to their company.

How will you change the way you handle your next job interview?