Before, During, And After Your Interview

Before, During, And After Your Interview

You’ve got a job interview coming up – fantastic! You probably have heard all kinds of tips regarding what to do during the interview, but the interview itself is only one part of your preparations. You also need to prepare pre-interview and then there are the things you need to do post interview. Here are a few general tips for what you need to do at each stage of the interview process.


Pre-Interview Preparations

If you didn’t already do your homework on the company during the application process you had better make sure you are fully acquainted with them by the time you step through the door for the interview. Read their website, check out what they’re posting on all their social media channels. Know what they’re up to and the sort of culture they probably have.


Make sure you have a couple of copies of your resume in a manila envelope to keep it looking fresh and professional.


Take the time to turn your cell phone off. You absolutely don’t want it ringing during your interview. Even if you don’t answer it the noise is still a distraction that ruins the flow of the conversation and throws an unprofessional light on you.


Check your travel times. Build in an extra twenty minutes so there’s no risk of running late no matter what the traffic is doing.


During the Interview


No matter how you’re feeling about yourself or your chances at this interview make sure you look the part of a confident, consummate professional. Maintain eye contact, square your shoulders and smile as if this is the easiest thing in the world for you.


You know they’re going to ask you to tell them about yourself, so practice what you’re going to say beforehand. You’ve heard of the elevator pitch right? Well that’s what you need to create about yourself. Who you are what makes you tick, highlighted skills or accomplishments in about a minute.


Stay positive. Even if they ask about your previous job and you left because your boss was a jerk find some way of framing your answer in a positive light. Find something good to say about the company or your co-workers.


Provide examples. It’s easy to say I’m good at X,Y,Z. What will make you a stand out candidate is the way you back up your statements. Give quantifiable examples of how you used your skills to improve something or help someone, or, increase profitability. For example, I implemented a new workflow system that improved the admins team performance by 20%. Help the interviewer imagine what a great asset you will be for their company.


Interview Follow-up


Always send a thank you note following the interview. Thank them for their time and their consideration and reiterate a point discussed in the interview. Emailing the thank you is acceptable, but a hand written note is still the most meaningful


Do Not Let Circumstances Control You

Do Not Let Circumstances Control You

The Jackie Chan we all know and love is a fun loving martial arts movie star with over 150 films behind him. He has stars on the Hong Kong Avenue of Stars and the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Every time you see a picture of Jackie Chan he looks like he’s on top of the world. You would never guess that he started out, essentially, at bottom of the world.

Jackie Chan and his parents were refugees from the Chinese Civil War, but that never slowed young Jackie down. His mother called him Cannonball because he was a non-stop ball of rolling activity.

After he failed his first year of primary school, Jackie was sent to the China Drama Academy where he rolled that propensity for activity into rigorous training in the martial arts and acrobatics. That led him to the Seven Little Fortunes – a group made up of the school’s top students.

Jackie started performing in films at the age of five. By seventeen he was working as a stuntman for Bruce Lee. Despite all the work he was getting, Jackie Chan still wasn’t making a name for himself. For a while he went back to school and worked in construction, but he never stopped working in film and he never stopped striving. He finally found the success he was after when he started adding comedy to his work.

Starting life as a refugee didn’t control Jackie’s fate, neither did failure early in life or a lack of success later on. With the help of his parents, Jackie was able to use his overactive tendencies to his advantage. When he couldn’t find success as a straight martial artist he found the comedy that was evident in the out-takes of his movies.

Instead of letting his circumstances control him, Jackie made those circumstances work for him, essentially changing the circumstances to suit him better.

Happy Holidays

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As always, the winding down year came with ups and downs, but as it comes to a close, and we think back on all that happened, it is the good things we should choose to focus on. The kindnesses we received and and ones we gave. Beautiful moments that shone through like the sun catching rainbow sparkles on fresh fallen snow. And joys sprinkled throughout.

Most likely there were people who helped you during the year, who offered support or guidance or an introduction to someone you’d been trying to meet. Maybe your boss gave you an opportunity to expand your abilities, or a co-worker offered a ride share while your car was in the shop. You can probably think of hundreds of things that happened through the year that made your days brighter.

Focusing on the positives shines a glow of thanks over the whole year. By bidding the year farewell with a thankful heart and well wishes, we set the tone for the one to come.

Until we meet again in the upcoming year, the joys of the season to all from all of us to all of you.

The Problem Is Not The Problem

The Problem Is Not The Problem


Problems get in the way of us doing things. They create stumbling blocks or insurmountable mountains. They make us feel like we can never get where we need to go.


It’s true if you wait for a problem to go away or hope it will go away or decide there’s nothing you can do about it and give up, then yes, the problem will definitely stop you from achieving your goal.


However, what if you decided to think of each problem as an opportunity. An opportunity to try a different approach. To talk to different people. To learn something new.


So often things that start out as problems turn out to be inspirations. They lead to things and situations that are better than our original plan.


Life and how you feel about it and what you get out of it are all a matter of perspective. When you run into a problem. Instead of worrying about how you’re going to get around it, search for the opportunity buried inside it. You might find buried treasure.


Becoming a Top 20% Salesperson

Becoming a Top 20% Salesperson


You’ve probably heard of the 80/20 rule, that states that 80% of the results in a given situation can be attributed to 20% of the people working towards those results. That means the top 20% of the salespeople in a company will make 80% of the sales.


Take control

Top twenty percenters have certain attributes. They don’t hope for the best they commit to being the best.  Holding no illusions that they’re somehow going to magically rise to the top, they decide they’re going to get there and then hold themselves accountable every step on the way. There’s a grand canyon between hoping for something and deciding you’re going to get something. One leaves the achievement of the thing to outside forces. The other takes control.


Acknowledge successes

They look at everyday as another opportunity to learn something that’s going to bring them closer to their goals. They implement what they’re learning and keep on working away on that skill like a sculptor on stone, until that skill or the sculpture inside the stone is revealed. When those skills lead to successes they don’t just let them pass like ships in the night they stop and acknowledge the accomplishment. They reward themselves in some way to keep themselves incentivized.


Not afraid of fear

Fear is the great stopping point to so much success. The two things that people most fear are: failure and looking bad in front of others. Those fears are what prevent so many people from giving their careers 100% of their energy and dedication. You can’t fail 100% if you’re only putting in 60% or 70% effort.


Top twenty percenters do not let fear get in their way. They are as afraid as anyone else, but they go ahead and put themselves out there anyway. As Henry Ford said, “One of the greatest discoveries a man makes, one of his great surprises, is to find he can do what he was afraid he couldn’t do.”


A personal commitment to results

Top twenty percenters are not giving lip service to their company or their product, they are speaking with 100% conviction and commitment. To be a strong salesperson you have to believe in yourself. To believe in yourself you have to believe in what you’re doing. You can’t believe 60% or 70% or even 99%. It has to be 100%. If you don’t have 100% believe in yourself and your company then why are you there?


Clear direction

A lawyer never asks someone on the stand a question without knowing the answer. Top twenty percent salespeople are fully prepared and versed on every aspect of the their product and the people they’re selling that product to. They may never say the same thing twice, but they have a clear, defined system for what they’re going to say.