chair of management in the
Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South
“Ask professors and administrators about the priorities of the
department,” he says.
■ Learn about the interviewers.
Look up each person on
LinkedIn, as well as on work or
personal websites, then use this
information to connect with
them during the interview, says
Laxmikant Manroop, PhD,
assistant professor of human
resource management at Eastern
Michigan University. “I always
tell my students that the similar-
ity attraction paradigm applies
in the job-seeking process,”
McCarthy, PhD, professor of
management at the University of
Toronto Scarborough in Canada.
Confidence and strong interper-
sonal skills will only take you so
far in the eyes of a future boss.
As psychologists who are experts
in the area will tell you, thorough preparation is key because
it helps potential employers get
a deeper understanding of your
competencies, weaknesses and
“The point of good preparation is not to get a job, but the
right job,” says Paul Fairlie, PhD,
president and CEO of a human
resources and organizational
consulting firm based in Toronto.
That preparation includes thinking about your work history and
the competencies you’ve gained.
“It’s a lot of work, but once you
do this, you’ll have a better sense
of who you are and the type of
job that will engage you,” Fairlie
Here’s some advice from
psychologist experts on what to
do before, during and after a job
interview to boost your chances
of getting the right offer.
BEFORE THE INTERVIEW
■ Research the organization.
Search for news articles about
the company and read its annual
reports, says Paul Yost, PhD,
associate professor of industrial
and organizational psychology
at Seattle Pacific University in
Washington. Invite someone
who works at the organization to
coffee to learn about the company’s values and culture. This type
of research prepared his psychology students for interviews
at Amazon.com. They learned
that the concept of “fail fast” is
a key aspect of the company’s
culture—in other words, be proactive with a bias toward action,
but constantly seek feedback so
you can adapt and change as you
go, Yost says.
“With this in mind, they
knew to give examples of when
they’d been highly proactive and
adapted when problems arose,”
For academic jobs, study up
on the school’s financial situation
and accomplishments by searching the web and talking to faculty
members, says Robert Ployhart,
PhD, professor and department
is not to
get a job,
PAUL FAIRLIE, PhD,
HOW TO EARN THAT
Excellent interview skills are critical to landing the job you want.
Here’s how to prepare and follow up.
BY HEATHER STRINGER