Youth can practice interview skills to help secure jobs

Here are three tips to help youth prepare for an interview.

When it is time for that interview for the job you would like, there are certain steps to take before the interview happens. Michigan State University Extension 4-H Youth Development offers workshops and suggests research on what is needed for upcoming interviews. Once you have put your resume together implementing all of your information, you need to take time to prepare for the interview. This is the next step in securing the job of your choice.

Here are three tips on preparing for interviews:

  1. One of the first things you need to do is to research the organization. What type of work is involved? How long have they been employing people? Look up the company online by checking out their website or Facebook page. Take notes for yourself and then bring those with you to the interview. The interview committee will be impressed you took the time to research them and have questions for them.
  2. During the interview, you will need to market yourself. You need to know your skills – to share what you know and how you will use your knowledge and skills in the job offered. Be upfront and truthful about yourself. If they do not think you are sincere about the job, why would they want to hire you? One way to prepare is to list your accomplishments and then list what life skills you learned by achieving those accomplishments. Body language, dressing for the interview and making that first impression with a good business handshake all are vital to the impression you will make on the interviewers. Be yourself.
  3. Research sample interview questions and practice answering them. A suggested website for more information is MyFuture.com. This will help your thought process and not catch you off guard. Questions such as, “Where do you see yourself in five years?” “What motivates you?” and “Why should we hire you?” may be asked during your interview.

Make sure you thank your interviewers as you leave the interview. It is also appropriate to write a short note thanking them for their time immediately afterwards.

For more information on the interview process or other career education resources, please visit the Michigan 4-H Career Preparation webpage. For more information on Michigan 4-H youth programs, contact your local MSU Extension office.

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