honing interviewing skills

I have realized that I need to improve my interviewing skills. I don’t have the career development resources from my undergrad anymore so I’m on my own. I’m curious to know how others went about honing their interviewing skills while seeking employment…all inputs are appreciated

I found that talking to friends of mine that work in the same or similar fields about what I do at work on a daily basis, made we well prepared to discuss my prior roles at companies I worked at. I was in credit (loans) before moving over to fixed income, so I would force myself to discuss current events with friends of mine that worked in fixed income which gave me the confidence that I need to properly verbally walk through the analysis of a credit from start to finish, while at the same time, gave me the ability to talk about real world situations during my interview (which made me sound wellread). Find someone in the field that you are looking to move into (if you are looking to move at all). Preferably someone that likes their job (and you) and will not mind talking to you, and pick their brain. Learn how to speak their language. I think one of the differences between my good interviews and bad interviews came down to confidence, which comes with practice. This is something that most people already know, but you would be surprised how many people cannot verbally convey their job function during an interview (I interviewed a couple dozen people in the past). Go to networking events like the ones the NYSSA or local CFA chapters hold. I must have had five interview-like conversations with strangers that attended the last interview that I went to and it wasnt a job fair/networking event. If you are not a very social person, you need to force your self to talk to get up and talk to people. Your interviews should be more like conversations. BSing with people will only make you better at them.

Thanks for the advice aic…very helpful!

Confidence yield success. In everything you do.

there are also a few good books you can get to help you answer some standard interview Q’s …I cant remember any names right now though I spent a good 2 hrs @ a bookstore lookin through interview related books about 2 yrs ago and i still refer to them everytime i have an interview .

talk to people that are good interviewers and practice with them. nothing beats doing mock interviews. if you don’t have any friends, you can practice responding to questions and listening to how you sound…either tape record yourself or leave yourself voicemails on your cell phone if you don’t have a recorder. it’s amazing how different we really sound sometimes versus what we think we’re like

Learn their language, that’s a great point! You have to appear plugged into their space because it’ll be easier for them to get their mind around you working there. If you ‘fit in’ from the get go, and then have the basics in terms of skills and qualifications, you give yourself a much better chance at landing the job. I prepare for interviews like they are final exams. I learn as much as I can about the company and the position. I’ve created a 20+ possible question / ideal answer document that I go over before interviews. This helps me absolutely nail some questions questions and gives me talking points if the question isn’t asked directly.

wow…thanks all for all the wonderful advice. It’s those scenario-based interviews that gets me. I guess you can’t really prepare for those. Just have to be ready to speak off the cuff.

some behavioral questions ive heard at investment banking/ private equity interviews: 1. what motivates you at work 2. what are your areas of development 3. how do you multitask? what are your thoughts on it? 4. what do you think about grad school? have answers for them…! have good answers for them.

just outta curiosity what ur answer to this … 1. what motivates you at work ??

on a high level, working with your colleagues, accomplishing something bigger by being a part of a team (complementing each others’ strengths). the little things that i enjoy: learning something new everyday, figuring out complex scenarios, picking the brain of your clients, your superior, talks that lead to stories about life experiences, etc. overall, being valued by superiors and on a personal not, feeling good for a job well done.