A seasoned hiring manager shares his advice on the do’s and don’ts of job interviews.
Drawing on nearly two decades of business experience, much of it in banking, Berdiev (Credit Analysis 102, 2012) offers a host of tips to prepare for and behave during a job interview as well as to follow up after it. His book is organized into 105 concise chapters, generally a page and a half each. The first nine chapters focus on what he calls fundamentals, including how to rehearse answers to potential interview questions (and to have someone observe/critique this rehearsal), proof resume and cover letters, and leverage “the power of the notepad”—always bring one to the interview. The next 30 chapters cover important pre-interview issues: don’t use a bizarre email address for communications or make scheduling the interview difficult for the recruiter/hiring manager. Berdiev then spends the bulk of his book on the interview itself, with 51 chapters addressing areas such as body language and asking for the interviewer’s business card (unless it’s not a practice to have one in your industry): “If you do not ask for one or otherwise do not obtain the contact information you need to follow up with a thank-you note, it can deduct a point or two from your candidacy.” He then follows with 10 chapters touching on strategies regarding the follow-up: for instance, avoid “desperado” language, don’t beg, “act subservient,” or come across as standoffish. Berdiev wraps up with a section called “Bonuses,” which offers insights specific to the commercial banking industry as well as general advice on using online networking tools. Berdiev’s guide is easy to read and surprisingly entertaining given its stress-inducing subject. His time as a hiring manager gives this book particular power, and his statement that “hiring managers continue to be exasperated over the fact that so many applicants fail everything, from the very elementary must-haves to more sophisticated expectations” should give readers pause. Indeed, while much of what Berdiev says may seem basic or obvious, job hunters would do well to follow his wealth of advice.
Invaluable, authoritative tipsheet for job candidates.