checklist was compiled with the help of Dawn Penfold, CMP,
president of New York City-based The Meeting Candidate Network Inc.
List the skills required by the
hiring company, and list the skills you have that meet those
Research the salary potential, and
determine whether this position is a good opportunity.
If the salary is lower than what you
earned in your previous position, work out a budget to determine
what is financially feasible. Determine if other assets (flex time,
working from home, educational opportunities, etc.) would make up
for the reduction in pay.
Research the company on the Internet;
know the industry and who the company considers to be its
Ascertain what problems you can solve
for the company.
Prepare and memorize a “pitch” for
when the interviewer asks you to talk about yourself and explain
why you are the best candidate for the job.
Be prepared to answer questions such
as, “What have you done in this situation?”
Prepare a mental list of questions to
ask the interviewer about the company, the industry and the
specific position for which you are interviewing.
Prepare or update a list of
references. Be sure all contact information is current.
Put together a portfolio of your
work. Include material from special events, meetings and
conferences, as well as any forms (request for proposal, banquet
event order, registration, etc.) you have standardized or
Refresh your memory about your work
on previous programs. Know properties and facilities used as well
as key contacts. Be prepared to discuss prior events in
Print out and take along several
copies of your resume on high-quality paper, along with a copy of
Be sure to get directions to the
company prior to the interview, and take the phone number of the
office and the names of the people with whom you are scheduled to
Arrive early enough to be able to
freshen up if necessary. Be sure to turn off your cell phone or
To make a good initial impression,
greet the interviewer by name, and be sure to offer a firm
Smile often and maintain eye
Relax, listen, use good posture and
enjoy the conversation.
Learn as much as you can about the
company or association from the interview. Ask detailed questions
based on your pre-interview research.
Ask what the company is looking for
in a quality candidate, and translate your skills to this
Provide examples of your past
accomplishments and how they could be applied to the
Outline explicit reasons why you are
the ideal candidate.
Focus on the points you have prepared
without sounding rehearsed.
At the conclusion of the discussion,
thank the interviewer and determine the next step.
Ask the interviewer for a business
card for your files and for following up.
Following upWithin one day, write a thank-you note to each person you met.
If a decision is being made within days, e-mail the letter.
Preferably, if time allows, handwrite it on quality note paper and
send it via standard mail.If you do not hear from the company within a week, follow up
with a brief letter reminding the interviewer of your interest and