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Second Interviews Part two

Question time

Asking questions shows initiative, enthusiasm and that you are interested in the position. Some that you might ask include:

What am I expected to accomplish in my first six months?

How would you define your company culture?

What support will I receive for my professional development?

Also prepare some questions that relate directly to information you were given at the first interview. For example, “When I met Mr X last week, he mentioned such-and-such-a project – what would my team’s involvement be in that area?”

This not only shows enthusiasm but shows that you’re capable of listening.

Use the second interview to clarify any of your doubts about the organisation including its training program, salary or location.

And use the second visit to work out if you like the people you may be working with. Remember this is a two way process. They may like you, but what’s your opinion of them?

Use this opportunity to meet individuals, view facilities, review company philosophies and ask any additional questions. Do the employees seem happy, bored, overworked?

These are people you will have to spend much of your time with so it is best to find out now.

Second interviews are often occasions for you to be introduced to other potential colleagues as well as the manager – and just as much as it’s their mission to find out if they really like you, it’s yours to determine if you can happily share an office or desk with them.

If you are lucky enough to be introduced to people who would effectively be your peer group, don’t be afraid to ask them what it’s like to work there.

You could ask what the office atmosphere is like, how social they are (if this is an important consideration), even certain aspects of what it’s like to work in that area if appropriate – is there a nearby gym, decent shops, good transport links and so on.

Follow-up

After the second interview, remember to give immediate feedback to your recruitment consultant, who will be waiting to find out how you got on.

This needs to include any areas you felt you may have fallen down on – perhaps you have a nagging doubt about a specific answer you gave, or forgot to press home a certain point about a special skill or experience you have.

Your consultant can cover this for you in his or her call to the employer.

If you’ve been interviewed directly, send a thank you note. Expressing enthusiasm and a keenness to join a company immediately and directly to the person who interviewed you can be a deciding factor as to whether you are offered the job.

There is a possibility you will be offered the job at the end of the interview. If an offer is made and you are unsure about it, be confident enough to ask for time to think the offer over. It is normal practice, however, is to find out several days later.

Second interviews can be daunting – but if you put in the preparation, you’re halfway there.

Good luck.

Story by Kate Southam, editor of CareerOne. Go to www.careerone.com.au for more career related articles. Job hunting and workplace questions can be directed to CareerOne by emailing: editor@careerone.com.au