In advance of her June 11 session, Resume Reality: Is Your Resume Keeping You From the Job You Want?, Heidi Brown offers these 18 tips to a successful interview.

To learn more or register for the this special event — check out:

1. Know what you’re going to wear before the day of the interview. Try it on, be sure it’s clean, buttons replaced, ironed, shoes are shined. All this shows you care about your image. And alleviates last minute problems the day of the interview.

2. Show up at an appropriate time, only about 5 to 10 minutes early. Too early looks weird and as if you can’t manage your time. And obviously too late looks like you can’t get somewhere on time. You may want to drive to the location the day before to be sure you know where it is, where to park, any construction or detours that may slow you down, etc. This alleviates stress and frustration the day of your interview.

3. Know the name of the person you’re actually interviewing with.

4. Be nice to the receptionist. Sometimes employers will go out and ask how you treated the receptionist. (We actually did this at my company!)

5. Turn off your cell phone. The employer doesn’t want you to have interruptions during the interview.

6. Be sure you have a nice firm handshake, and comfortable smile.

7. Sit up and lean in somewhat while the employer is talking so that you look alert and interested.

8. Nod along occasionally to show you are listening and understand.

9. Look the employer in the eye.

10. Have a notepad and pen to take notes.

11. Have some questions ready when they ask if you have any questions. It again shows you care about the position.

12. Research the company ahead of time and possibly get in a question or comment that shows you did your research.

13. Don’t discuss or go on and on about any negatives with a past position. You don’t want to look like you’re trouble, or have issues. Ex: “My last boss was just a jerk, I could never do anything to please him, so I left.”

14. Have answers ready!!! Don’t allow yourself to be caught off guard and ramble on or fumble for an answer. Have an answer ready for why you are leaving, or did already leave your previous job. Again, no negatives. Something like “I’ve worked there for 5 years and feel I have learned all that I can and want to move on to a new challenge.” or in case of a department closing or layoffs, simply state that. They may ask why you were picked to be laid off….. Have an answer such as you were the newest person in, they discontinued the products you were working on, etc.

Other things they may ask you:

Your biggest accomplishment at your previous job

Your biggest weakness

Your biggest strength

Why they should give you this job

Salary requirements

15. Have questions ready to ask the employer. They will ask if you have any questions, and it reflects well on you if you have some.

Some examples may be:

Why are you filling this position?

How long did the previous person have this position?

What is the #1 thing I should know for success with your company?

Is there any chance for promotion down the road?

Does the company have plans for growth in the next five years?

How many supervisors will I report to?

Will I have anyone reporting to me?

I researched, but couldn’t find your company’s mission statement, do you have one?

And what is it?

16. Thank them for their time and for meeting with you.

17. Follow up with a written Thank You note to the name of the person who interviewed you, within days, not weeks.

18. Follow up in a week to two weeks later to see if they’ve filled the position. (Or whatever time frame they may have told you, you don’t want to come off as harassing them.)

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