Make a Good Impression, the First Time!
Sunday, June 26, 2016

 By Porsche Miles Grant

In my previous article (Land the job, Increase your Finances), I discussed the proper ways to land a job. I covered the proper attire, and manner in which a person should conduct themselves. Nevertheless, there were some things we didn’t cover. In order to make a good impression with your potential employer, there are some essential factors that must be considered. The goal of an interview is to appeal to the employer, and land the job. Landing the job will help to decrease some of your financial burdens, while allowing you to purchase the necessities of life. As a result, it is in your best interest to dot all of your I’s, and cross all of your T’s. 
So first things first! Aside from dressing in a professional manner, avoiding political, personal, and religious conversations, and making sure to answer all of the interviewee’s questions, you must also do research on the company prior to the interview. Almost, always, you can bet your bottom dollar that an employer wants to know what it was that attracted you to their company. They want to know what prior knowledge you have about the organization. Without doing prior research, you will not be able to efficiently answer the question. However, getting this answer right is a huge bonus for you. It shows you have done your due diligence, and taken time to learn about the company. You were proactive!
Moreover, it is also crucial that you seek out the compensation package prior to the interview. It can come off a bit tacky to ask about the pay before receiving the job offer. Therefore, to eliminate the curiosity, look it up. You can always Google the job position and the state in which you reside to find a compensation comparison. Another factor you would like to prepare for is the infamous question, “Where do you see yourself in the next 5 to 10 years?” To some, this question is a no brainer, and they explain to their potential employer exactly where they see themselves. (Living in another state, besides the state the job is in that they are applying for, and doing something that has nothing to do with the job they are applying for.) The only problem with this answer is you must consider why an employer would want to hire someone who does not plan on growing within their company. Furthermore, why would an employer want to invest time and money into training if the potential candidate is not planning on being around for at least the next 5 years?  
Companies are looking for candidates that they can grow with. They want a candidate that will be loyal, dedicated, and are able to add value to the organization. Thus, if an employer knows you are only interested in temporary employment when they are seeking a full time employee, you may not be in the running to land the job. In addition, you want to be mindful of how you answer the question, “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” It is not a good idea to literally disclose your bad habits. Instead, it is always better to explain a minor weakness you may have had an issue with, and what you did to conquer it. Or you may want to use a strength as a weakness. For example: “I often strive for perfection.” Or “In the past I have had issues with organization, therefore, going forward I make sure to write down all my task, and prioritize them from most to least importance.”
Remembering how to respond to these questions will definitely help you make a great impression the first time. The question now is, “How bad do you want to land the job?”
Porsche Miles Grant is a Certified Financial Counselor and Certified Paralegal. She is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Organizational Leadership.
She may be reached at or 313-753-2696. You may also find her at
This column was printed in the June 26, 2016 - July 9, 2016 edition.

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