Tag Archives: Interview Tips

Will I Get a Job Offer

Will I Get a Job Offer? 5 Hints Your Chances Are Strong

That stretch between a job interview and getting an offer – or rejection – often feels like perpetual limbo. However, certain signals during interviews and in those post-conversation contacts provide clues on how strong your candidacy stands.

Though the ultimate decision lies with the employer, below are some hints that your chances look favorable.

1. The Conversation Flows Smoothly

Interviews that feel more like natural, engaging dialogue than rigid inquisitions are a great sign. If you and the interviewer seem to ‘click’ and they’re actively listening and responding positively as you talk, it’s likely a good fit personality-wise.

2. Logistics Discussions Creep In

Talk of official paperwork, start dates, salaries, and onboarding often emerges with very well-received candidates. If not, inquiries about availability indicate they see you in the role. Either way, logistical discussions signal serious consideration.

3. Interviewer Body Language Cues Interest

Pay attention to the interviewer’s body language for cues that indicate interest and engagement. An open posture, steady eye contact, smiles, nods, and leaning in during the conversation can all be positive signs that you are making a favorable impression.

4. Contact Continues After the Interview Concludes

Sometimes interest is directly expressed through effusive compliments, job offer hints, or follow-ups requesting references or more interview availabilities if the hiring process involves multiple discussions.

5. The Hiring Manager Actively Sells You on The Role

Enthusiastic hiring managers also ‘close’ interviews by spotlighting attractive aspects of the company culture, career development opportunities, and specific perks of the open position. This added pitch hints you’re a preferred option worth wooing.

The key is looking and listening for signals you’re among the top candidate circle under current review. No guarantees exist until an official job offer comes through, but these clues help indicate where you likely stand.

Looking for work? Get connected with one of our career experts.

Explain Leaving a Job when Fired

How to Explain Leaving a Job When Fired

We’ve all been there – sitting in a job interview, feeling like things are going well when the interviewer asks a question that makes your stomach drop. “Why did you leave your last job?” As innocent as it may sound, this question is a minefield, especially if you were fired from your last job. One wrong move can blow up your chances in seconds.

Below, we’ll break down this question, why it’s so tricky, and how to tactfully handle it without damaging your candidacy if you have a termination in your past.

Why It’s Asked

Interviewers ask this for two main reasons:

  1. To assess potential red flags. Were you fired or let go? Did you have conflicts with management? They want to uncover any skeletons hiding in your work history closet.
  • To evaluate your judgment and self-awareness. How tactfully and honestly can you discuss sensitive topics? Do you take ownership of failures or blame others? They want insights into your critical thinking and maturity.

In essence, it reveals your professional judgment and integrity, which are hugely important if they’re considering you for an open position.

Why a Termination Answer Can Tank Your Chances

If you were fired or let go, answering this question wrong can immediately eliminate you from the hiring process. Here are some dangerous approaches that you should avoid while interviewing:

  • Lying or majorly twisting the truth. Few things disturb interviewers more than catching a candidate in a clear fabrication. It exposes terrible judgment and erodes all trust.
  • Bad-mouthing previous employers. Even if your termination was unfair or harsh, provocative boasts towards past bosses cast you in an extremely negative light. They’ll worry you’ll later attack them, too, if hired.
  • Not taking any ownership. Passing full blame onto others signals immaturity and a lack of accountability for your career. It’s a giant red flag that something similar could repeat.

Essentially, anything dishonest, bitter, or evasive destroys your credibility almost instantly. Interviews seek the truth – the good and the bad.

How to Tactfully Discuss a Termination

  • Don’t volunteer unprompted details. If not asked specifically if you were fired, don’t offer that info where avoidable. But if asked directly, respond honestly.
  • Remain calm and neutral in tone. Discuss factually without emotions clouding your judgment. Don’t sound defensive, angry, or resentful.
  • Take ownership where reasonable. Explain your contributions to the situation humbly and maturely. But don’t fall on your sword, claiming all blame is unfair.
  • Speak respectfully about past employers. Even if the firing was unjustified, avoid disparaging leaders or companies. Be the bigger person.
  • Pivot to the positive. After briefly explaining the termination, redirect the conversation to what you learned and how you’ve grown. Interviewers care more about the future outlook than past issues.

It comes down to being transparent but also discreet – leveraging emotional intelligence to navigate tricky situations. Demonstrate you can handle sensitive topics with grace and wisdom. That ability speaks volumes about your leadership abilities.

In Closing

The “Why did you leave your last job?” question can be a pivotal moment in an interview. If you have a thoughtful response prepared that focuses on moving forward in a positive way, it can help demonstrate your maturity and professionalism. But if you become defensive or emotional, it may hurt your chances. Try to take accountability for any legitimate issues while also being fair to yourself. An honest, level-headed answer shows the poise and self-awareness that employers look for in strong candidates. With practice and preparation, you can handle this question in a way that represents you at your best.

Looking for work? Get connected with one of our career experts.

Ways You Can Stand Out in Your Job Search

5 Ways You Can Stand Out in Your Job Search

Landing a job in a competitive market takes more than submitting a pile of generic applications and hoping something sticks. You need to get noticed and stand out in your job search by showcasing your fit and dedication through each step in the process.

Follow these five proven strategies to help ensure you stand out in your job search and rise above other applicants.

Ways You Can Stand Out in Your Job Search

1. Customize Your Application Materials

Far too many candidates take shortcuts in submitting essentially the same resume and cover letter to every application. To stand out, you should customize these files to align with each company’s unique needs, priorities, and language.

Carefully review the job descriptions highlighting key requirements and responsibilities for which you’ll want to showcase matching experience. Research the company culture and strategic goals to incorporate relevant language in your materials as well. Personalizing shows extra effort to fit their needs.

2. Ask Thoughtful and Strategic Questions

In interviews, most candidates stick to basic questions about the job scope or company overview that could easily be answered by visiting the website. Push your inquiries to demonstrate a genuine interest in understanding their distinct challenges and objectives.

Ask smart questions that show your ability to think critically about how to achieve success in that unique role. Pose questions on goals the hiring manager hopes this role will accomplish.

3. Follow Up After the Interview

After the interview, send thank you notes to everyone you met with, reflecting on specific discussion topics that resonated with you. Share any additional insights, ideas, or qualifications you didn’t get a chance to mention that reinforce your interest and fit.

Set a reminder to check in a week later to show your eagerness to begin without being pushy if you haven’t heard back. This extra outreach leaves a lasting impression.

4. Immerse Yourself in Their Work

If possible, depending on the type of organization, gain exposure to the company’s work, whether software tools, media publications, consumer products, or other relevant offerings. The more context you have, the more thoughtful conversations and interview examples you can pull from.

Follow their thought leaders and innovators in social channels. Subscribe to key products and reports. This immersion allows you to link your experience to tangible examples of work they prioritize versus speaking generically.

5. Review All Interview Feedback

Even if you don’t get an offer after several rounds of interviews, be sure to request as much feedback as possible on assessment results and perceived areas of weakness compared to selected candidates. Study this closely to adapt your positioning, polish your skills, and refine talking points to become an even stronger contender the next go around.

Standing out doesn’t require gimmicks if you work hard on the right activities – customizing materials for fit, showing genuine interest with smart inquiries, diligently following up, immersing in their offerings and leveraging feedback. Employ these five strategies with every application and interview to ensure you shine brighter than the competition each step of the way.

Looking for work? Get connected with one of our career experts.

Best Practices for Crafting an Elevator Pitch for Interviews

Best Practices for Crafting an Elevator Pitch for Interviews

If asked to sum up your best qualities and motivations in just a minute or two, could you pull together an elevator pitch that feels authentic and natural? Many job seekers struggle with this. Generic or overly practiced pitches fail to showcase what makes you unique.

So how do you develop an elevator pitch that impresses, while feeling honest versus rehearsed? Below, we unpack the top tips for crafting pitches that stand out to employers.

Best Practices for Crafting an Elevator Pitch for Interviews

Know Your True Motivations

First, do some self-reflection to identify what truly drives you in your career. Get clear on questions like:

  • What makes you excited to come to work and tackle the day’s challenges?
  • What past projects or accomplishments brought you the greatest sense of purpose and pride?
  • What larger visions or innovations do you want to work towards in the coming years?

With your motivations clearly defined, it becomes much easier to identify roles and companies that align with your passions.

Inventory Your Relevant Strengths

Once you have a job description in mind, carefully inventory your skills, talents, and experiences that directly connect with the prioritized wish list for the role. See beyond just formal qualifications to showcase the full picture.

For example, if the role requires leading projects from start to finish, reflect on examples from past positions, volunteer work, or side businesses that showcase those end-to-end leadership capabilities.

Weave in Your Unique Value

While matching your capabilities to the role is important, you also want to differentiate what makes you uniquely valuable. What niche skills, unusual backgrounds, special certifications, or creative talents make you a one-of-a-kind fit?

For example, maybe you bridge across multiple disciplines like marketing and data science. Or have innovated processes blending online and offline campaigns. Or have certifications in emergent areas like VR applications.

These unique elements help hiring managers see you as the ideal talent – someone who brings innovative perspectives and next-generation capabilities before competitors catch on.

Put Your Pitch into Practice

When it comes time to deliver your elevator pitch, start by expressing genuine enthusiasm for the company and how the open role connects to your larger passions and career aspirations. Quickly summarize your background, incorporating those unique differentiators.

Then, share real examples of how your experience equips you to excel in the role’s top priorities that you identified earlier from the job description. This supports your match claims with actual evidence versus just stating that you meet the requirements generically.

Close your pitch by summarizing why making this move at this point in your career would be so exciting and aligned with your personal growth. Use authentic statements specific to this company and position rather than generic phrases that could apply to any job.

Elevator pitches don’t have to feel forced or come off as bragging if you have the right elements. With core motivations clarified, plus examples showing how you uniquely meet the needs employers care most about, you can ace interviews through authenticity.

Looking for work? Get connected with one of our career experts.

Smart Interview Tips for Starters

Smart Interview Tips: Turning Your Weaknesses into Strengths

We all have weaknesses – those nagging professional shortcomings we hope hiring managers won’t ask about. However, interviews often shift from discussing accomplishments to directly addressing weaknesses. With the right preparation, you can pivot the discussion to focus on the efforts you’ve made to actively improve those areas.

Follow the smart interview tips below to make a strong impression when asked the difficult questions.

Smart Interview Tips for Starters

Don’ts – What Derails Candidates

The first rule of thumb is not to claim any clearly bogus, irrelevant, or utterly fatal flaws, just to seem more forthright. Stating, “Sometimes I work too hard and skip breaks” or “I just care too much” comes across as obviously evasive fluff rather than authentic transparency.

Equally, avoid highlighting weaknesses clearly tied to key roles and responsibilities. Saying “I’m not really detail-oriented” for accounting positions or “I don’t work well cross-collaboratively” never sits well.

Finally, beware of rambling mildly problematic backstories that don’t answer the question. Nervous candidates have a tendency to air personal issues better discussed privately versus with prospective employers. It’s best to resist the urge to focus on vulnerabilities unrelated to the job duties and instead emphasize strengths.

Dos – Framing Fixable Areas of Growth

Now for the formula to tactfully navigate the weaknesses question minefield: Focus on the skills you’re lacking but are reasonably improvable through deliberate effort over time. Structure responses using the handy PAR approach:

  • Problem – Name the weakness concisely, keep it specific, not overwhelmingly broad
  • Action – Describe active steps taken to remedy this shortcoming through training, mentoring, or self-study
  • Result – Highlight measurable progress made resolving the issue with more room for improvement ahead

For example, consider a detail-oriented accountant who admits to struggling with public speaking. They could respond:

I hesitated with presentation skills early on but pursued Toastmaster training to address that gap. After five sessions, my manager noticed a greatly increased poise. Public speaking now feels less intimidating with further progress ahead through continual practice opportunities.”

See the game-changing difference? They own shortcomings, demonstrate proactive dedication toward resolutions, and have early positive outcomes to report.

You may not entirely resolve weaknesses, but showing hunger for self-improvement can be equally, if not more impressive, to interviewers seeking lifelong learners hungry for growth.

In Closing

Embrace the weaknesses question as a chance to showcase that drive toward being 1% better daily. Demonstrate self-awareness for areas needing enhancement alongside diligent commitment toward change for the better good. Use these smart interview tips to redirect attention from anxious flaws toward uplifting narratives of empowered development.

Looking for work? Get connected with one of our career experts.

Prepare For These 5 Tax Accounting Interview Questions!

Any tax accountant needs a full understanding of relevant tax laws, including federal, state, and local. If you are looking for a new accounting job and have an interview scheduled, preparation becomes critical. This includes being able to confidently answer a variety of questions related to any type of tax regulation.

tax accountant

With a goal of a successful interview performance and job offer, check out this list of possible tax questions. We also cover how to answer each, helping your studying efforts before the big day. In the end, responding to these queries clearly and confidently gives you the best chance of earning that job offer. Good luck! 

Describe Your Previous Experience with Tax Accounting

A hiring manager chose you for an interview because of the skills and experience listed on your résumé. So expect to be able to go into detail on your professional history with tax-related accounting. This includes handling any local, state, or federal tax laws and regulations. Be sure to study this information the night before your interview to provide clear and confident answers.

How Do You Handle Pressure-Packed Situations?

Tax season remains a stressful time for any accountant. The extra pressure and workload require someone with the ability to multitask. Pepper your answer with tangible examples of previous tax seasons and how you thrived in this situation. An excellent reference from a manager also helps verify your performance during crunch time.

How Do You Stay Abreast of Changes in Tax Laws and Regulations?

Tax accountants are responsible for staying informed on the latest changes in tax laws and regulations. Expect to be asked how you keep track of the changing information in your field. Answer by describing your approach, including visiting reputable online news sources covering tax regulations.

Describe Your Experience With Various Accounting Software Packages

Not surprisingly, any potential employer wants to understand your experience level with accounting software. You likely summarized this information in the skills section of your résumé. So go into more detail highlighting specific experiences with different accounting applications. Also, mention that you learn new applications quickly, considering the regular technology-related changes in the accounting field.

Why Did You Enter The Tax Accounting Field?

An interviewer wants to understand why you decided to become a tax accountant. Use this opportunity to highlight your affinity for the field. Go into specific experiences throughout your career and educational background to better inform your answer.

Looking For An Accounting Job?

If you need help finding a great accounting job, connect with the experienced recruiters at the Atlantic Group. As one of the top staffing agencies in New York, we know companies looking for exceptional candidates. Contact us at your earliest convenience!

8 Tips to Help Prepare You For Your Next Virtual Interview

Are you preparing for a virtual interview? If so, you’re in luck! We’ve put together a list of 8 tips to help you prepare. From making sure your computer is ready to go, to practicing your responses, we’ll help make sure you’re as prepared as possible. 

Virtual interview

What is a virtual interview?

A virtual interview is an online job interview conducted over video conferencing software such as Skype, Zoom, or Google Hangouts. This type of interviewing allows employers to meet with potential employees remotely and assess their qualifications in a face-to-face setting. Virtual interviews can be used to conduct all types of interviews, including initial screenings, general job interviews, and second or third interviews.

Virtual interviewing allows employers to save time and money associated with traditional in-person meetings by eliminating the need for applicants to travel. Additionally, virtual interviewing can help employers reach a broader candidate pool by allowing them to interview anyone from anywhere in the world. Virtual interviewing also increases access for job seekers with disabilities, those in rural areas, or those with limited transportation.

Here are eight tips for acing your virtual interview!

1. Research the Company:

Before your interview, make sure you research the company. This is crucial in helping you understand the organization’s mission, values, and goals. You’ll also be better prepared to answer questions as well as ask questions of your own during the interview.

2. Choose a Quiet Location:

On the day of your interview, it’s important to choose a quiet spot with minimal distractions. Make sure you have a good Internet connection and the necessary equipment, such as a laptop or computer, so that you can make the most of your virtual interview.

3. Practice Your Responses:

In order to be successful in any job interview, preparation is key. Take time to research common questions and practice your responses. Make sure you have a few examples of when you’ve demonstrated the competencies required for the job in question.

4. Dress Professionally:

Although you’re interviewing virtually, it’s still important to dress professionally and look presentable. This includes combing your hair, brushing your teeth, and wearing a professional outfit.

5. Test Your Equipment:

Before the day of the interview, it’s important to make sure all of your equipment is working properly so that there aren’t any technical difficulties during the interview. This includes testing out your microphone, camera, and audio levels to ensure everything is functioning correctly.

6. Prepare a List of Questions:

Preparing a list of questions to ask the interviewer at the end is an important part of any job interview. Think ahead and come up with some thoughtful questions that demonstrate your interest in the position.

7. Follow Up After Your Interview:

Finally, make sure to follow up after your interview. A polite email or phone call thanking the interviewer for their time is a great way to ensure that you remain top of mind.

8. Remember to Relax:

Above all else, remember to relax. It’s normal to be nervous when preparing for an interview, but try and channel that energy into confidence. Take a few deep breaths and trust that all your preparation has paid off.

Interview with Us

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to success in your next virtual interview! Explore Atlantic Group’s available opportunities and set up your next interview today!