Get organized for each interview

🧠 Know

Organizing yourself for each interview is an important part of boosting your confidence for interview day. Your preparation and organization reflects the type of employee you would be, so invest yourself as you would if you had the job or internship, already.

Begin these six steps right away when you are invited to interview to reduce stress. “Practice Specifics for Each Interview” and “Be at Your Best on Interview Day” get into further detail.

  1. request interview details
  2. plan your outfit
  3. confirm and prepare your location
  4. have conversations with your contacts
  5. prepare to discuss salary
  6. anticipate disclosure and other tricky topics

📈 Prepare

request interview details

Yes! You should inquire about the interview format, interviewers you’ll speak to, and any other details that will help you to prepare for your big chance with precision.

✅ Review this article in the Duke Career Hub that shares some useful questions and links to resources.

plan your outfit

This attire guide created by various Duke teams offers insights about how to dress well for various industries.

✅ It may be a little thing, but making and trying on your selection early ensures that you like the look and fit, it’s clean and wrinkle-free, and gives you time to make adjustments if your initial plan needs adjustments.

confirm and prepare your location

Whether it’s a video interview or in-person, take early steps to be comfortable with your space. These are a few tips that are sometimes overlooked:

✅ Block your calendar immediately, allowing time to arrive both physically and mentally. Go beyond the minimum, ensuring the time you need to feel prepared and successful.

Video

✅ Ensure your space has a strong internet connection, quiet location, and good lighting. This is especially important for AI sessions. It may mean you find an alternative to your apartment, or request roommates make adjustments.

Test your technology and decide on your background, aligning with the standards of the organization and industry. Use the pro tips for Zoom from Duke University Development and from the Association of Talent Development to ace your online video.

On-Site

✅ Confirm your directions and travel time for the time you’ve scheduled. Be sure your plan includes typical traffic delays.

✅ Aim to check in about 10 minutes early, not much earlier or later.

have conversations with your contacts

As soon as you get the invitation to interview, share the good news with those who helped along the way. This is a critical moment for follow-up conversations with new advice and support.

✅ Consider the ways that your team of boosters might support this next phase and make some requests. The “Talk to People” section of this site provides advice and resources.

prepare to discuss salary

Research and have an expected salary range for all interviews. Employers could ask for an expected salary range during early interviews, so be prepared! When in doubt, you can always reply to their question with “What’s the budget for this role?” and then reply to that figure to confirm whether that would work for you or you’ll excuse yourself from being considered.

✅ Use the negotiate section in Close the Search section of this site provide strategies for determining an expected salary range.

anticipate disclosure and other tricky topics

Have you determined whether or not, and when, to discuss topics like a disability or pregnancy? Do you have other factors in your search that you’ll coordinate as an employee or in negotiation? Now is a good time to create a roadmap for yourself that includes boundaries or a projected timeline.

✅ Connect with a coach if you’d like to talk this through with someone or practice, and the Duke Career Center Disclosure in the Job Search Guide is a useful resource.

✅ Additional Tasks

  • Review the materials about “The Day of Your Interview” in this short course on interviewing from the Duke Career Center. The image with clickable is especially helpful for getting organized when your interview is in-person.

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Resources

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