You could say that Sarah Palin had a bad interview experience last week when she visited Boston and was asked about Paul Revere’s famous ride. Here are four interview tips for Palin and anyone else trying to perform better during an interview.
1. Research the company you are meeting with before the interview. You can find company information on LinkedIn, TheVault, Hoovers, Glassdoor, and AnnualReports.com. Most employers want to know that you are serious enough about them to have spent some time learning about them before the interview. Perhaps if Sarah Palin had looked at the website for the Old North Church where she was visiting she would have nailed the Paul Revere question.
2. There’s no such thing as a “gotcha” question. You can do well on interviews if you are prepared. Review your accomplishments and try to match your accomplishments to the needs of the company. Even brain teaser questions are not designed to trick you, but rather to help employers understand how you think and solve problems. There really aren’t any trick interview or “gotcha” questions as Palin suggest…Just unprepared interviewees.
3. Don’t make stuff up. If you don’t know something or don’t have an example of something related to an employer’s question don’t make it up. Focus on how you would handle a particular situation if you were to encounter it. Palin’s responses contained inaccuracies and comments not based on fact. And just as her inaccuracies were easy to verify, yours may be easy to verify as well.
4. If you flub an interview question move on. If something doesn’t go well during the interview, let if go and move on. Rebound by showcasing examples of your strengths and send a follow up thank you letter reminding the employer why you are a great match for the job and letting them know you continue to be interested. Don’t focus on the negatives. Palin decided to appear on FOX to explain her responses. I’m not convinced that won her any interview points.