If you are separating from the Marine Corps you may have never experienced a job interview before. You may be feeling nervous or uncertain about what the interview will be like. One of the best ways to feel more confident is to practice interviewing. You wouldn’t enter a tactical situation without the right gear and training, so why would you go into an interview unprepared?

Most interviewers use a standard set of interview questions. These questions relate to how your skills, knowledge, training, and work experience fit the job and the company. Follow these tips to put your best foot forward during your next job interview.

  1. Keep your answers brief, but be certain you answer the questions thoroughly. 
  2. Use evidence, specific examples, data and anecdotes to illustrate your points. 
  3. Think about your answer before you start to speak. It is okay to pause and collect your thoughts before you give your answer. Try to relate your response to the position for which you are applying by using keywords from the job posting. 
  4. Remember, most questions have more than one purpose. As you develop your answers, think about the match between your skills and the company’s needs. 
  5. Every chance you get, give a step by step explanation of how you would go about doing a job or performing a task, rather than just saying you can do it. 
  6. Do not volunteer information you are not asked for -- you might talk yourself out of a job. 
  7. Take a pad of paper and a pen into the interview; on the first page list the top five things you would want someone to know about you.  Work these five things into your interview answers.
  8. Take notes and write down important information.
  9. When giving a response always give examples to illustrate your point. Actions speak louder than words, so use your past experiences to show you are capable of filling the role.
  10. Practice looking people in the eye and exhibiting positive body language.  Most Marines are very intimidating in nature due to training, so adjust your body posture to be more relaxed.  

To learn more interview techniques contact your installation’s Transition Readiness and Family Member Employment Assistance Programs, or utilize the Marine for Life Network to begin making professional connections today!