How to Prepare for the Ever Important Interview

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You worked hard, got your portfolio together, wrote a smashing resume and cover letter. Now it is time to prepare for the ultimate challenge. The “INTERVIEW”. Now that all your hard work and preparation has matured, you are starting to get noticed. Are you ready to face your greatest challenge? Let’s find out.

noun

In•TER•view

a formal meeting in which one or more persons question, consult, or evaluate another person: as in, a job interview.

What do interviews do? They are there to give the employer a chance to know you, to see through structure, how your prepared to take a job with them and see how you might behave when confronted with a problem. They can measure your worth through behavioral questions that would help them,

  • Predict the kind of employee you will be.
  • Measure your responses through situation based questions.

Going prepared into your interview with knowledge of the hiring Company, their projects and how they achieve their finished product, goes a long way to show the hiring team, that you can work to solve the tasks you were hired for.

In the gaming industry, it is one thing to have a passion and skill to play games. When you look at a game and think, “I would have loved to have worked on that project and had been a part of that team” or, to be able to see a program and think, “This is a great bit of work, but maybe doing it this way, would make it much more fluid in play.” Your passion, creativity and problem solving shows you are a software engineer. Programmers with passion and creativity for gaming, tend to be more successful developers, than someone who just wants to be the best player of games.

How do you react when your interviewer asks you about a ‘time you had’ scenario? How do you respond to behavioral questions?

A good way to approach these questions is with the S.T.A.R. format.

Practice beforehand these four items so you are prepared to answer behavioral questions.

Pay attention to these things, first impressions will always weigh heavy on how you are perceived, no matter how much experience you bring to the table.

  • Avoid Bad Body Language i.e. slouching, fidgeting, gum chewing, etc.
  • Use ‘Good Body Language’, Sitting up straight, direct eye contact, active listening, paying attention to whom ever is speaking.
  • Paying close attention to whom ever is speaking as well as taking notes, shows real interest in the job being offered.
  • Hold your tounge so you don’t appear foolish when you talk.
  • Your Tone of Voice, speak clear and concisely, without interrupting.
  • Smile, always be conciously smiling. A real smile says you are approachable and a likeable person to be with.

While in your interview, watch how you use your “non-verbal” communication.

  • Avoid the “UMs” and the “You Knows” in your interactions.
  • Do NOT interrupt the person speaking, Your response can wait until they finish. I might add, DO NOT finish their sentances for them! Listen and note the information they are sharing.
  • Do not talk about your negative traits.
  • It is ok to take a moment to present the best possible answer, rather than just saying the first thing that pops into your head.
  • Smile, always be conciously smiling.
Don’t forget to smile!

For you developers that are rejoining the work force after an extended absence, like myself. Returning to work can be intimidating. Not certain your previous experience is sufficient? Don’t stress, it is who you are, don’t get caught up worrying on who you were in the past. Instead, focus on what you knew and what you learned, and how you would apply your skills and knowledge to the tasks directly related to your new job. Be passionate about your new position and industry. By putting your passion behind your action, you will succeed no matter if you haven’t worked in this industry before.

Coming back into the workforce can be intimidating.

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Should there be anything that I would want you to get from this article, it would be, to put your best self forward, you have trained hard and have learned an impressive skill. Don’t sell yourslef short, you are ready to go out and take your passion for game development and apply it to so many different facets of the industry. Everything you have done has led you to this moment. This is what you have trained for!

This is the Way.

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60 yo Game Developer, 3D Digital Artist, Tech Illustrator, Former Telecom Tech Support Specialist, FM Radio Dj & Newscaster/Reporter and Printing Press Operator