The Complete Q&A Job Interview Guide

Education Research

A job interview is a screen test, an act. Getting hired depends almost completely on the actor factor. If you know your lines, perfect your delivery, and dress for the part, you’ll get hired. If you don’t, you won’t. No retakes. No bit parts.I know—you think background, qualifications, or experience have something to do with getting hired. You’re right—not about the job, though. About interviewing! The director only knows what you show. That’s why the actor factor is so critical.

Because interviews are so predictable, they’re controllable. Only the places and faces change—not the words. And

you can have them all embedded in your subconscious, ready for instant replay at the drop of an interesting job lead.

Here’s how to use the programmed interview technique to fast-forward your future:

  • Read the questions and answers to yourself once.
  • Customize the questions where necessary to apply to your background and target job.
  • Customize the answers where necessary to your vocabulary, background, and target job. (Just don’t change them radically; each answer is carefully designed and tested to score the most points. The further you deviate from it, the more you risk.)
  • Prepare a cassette for yourself containing the most difficult questions for you to answer, leaving spaces on the tape to read your answers aloud. (You can stop the tape occasion-ally to rehearse a particular response, but it is important to simulate an interview where the dialogue continues.)
  • Then, play the cassette at least three times a week for the next two weeks, sitting in front of a full length mirror. Try to simulate an interview as closely as possible by using a table for a desk and adding other props. Don’t stop the tape. Pay attention to your facial expressions, hand movements, and body language. Smile. Look the inter-viewer (you) in the eye. Try not to speak with your hands. Lean forward to make a point.
  • Use your driving, riding, or walking time to listen to the cassette and answer the questions. (You can just think the answers, but talking aloud to your imaginary friend will rivet your attention. Engaging your mouth when your brain is in gear is good practice.)

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