Landing The Job You Want: How to Have the Best Job Interview of Your Life

by William Byham, Debra Pickett
Three Rivers Press, 206 pages, $11.20

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If writing a resume and gathering references are the appetizers on the job search menu, the interview is the main course. Job seekers should be prepared to spend an adequate amount of their time and effort on this important aspect, and Landing The Job You Want covers everything you need to know and more. It's designed like a workbook to get the maximum engagement out of readers, and works best for those who devote themselves to completing the exercises and studying the examples included.

The authors use what they call the STAR system to get candidates to properly match themselves with interviewers and break questions down into manageable parts. STAR stands for Situation/Task, Action, Result and encourages you to consider a past job situation, the action you took, and the result you accomplished. Landing details these steps to matching up with a position before you embark on an interview:

1) Identify The Job's Dimensions

2) Think Through Your STARS (Situation/Task, Action, Result) in Each of Those Dimensions

3) Rate The Quality of Your STARS and Note "Shining" STARS (the best for each dimension)

4) Choose Your Best Matched Dimensions

The book points out that "Many organizations are less concerned with knowledge/skill than with your ability to learn," and instructs on how to emphasize your learning abilities during interviews. There's also a section on evaluating the way you work to discover if you are you a self-motivator or need an outside push and structure.

Professionals who are looking to make a career switch will benefit from the extensive case studies featured. These include cases like an engineer who wanted to switch to marketing and use sample interviews with dialogue to illustrate interview do's and don'ts. Landing encourages candidates to prove their worth by giving specific examples during interviews and illustrates how to do this effectively. Whether you're a recent graduate or looking to shift career gears, this book will instill the confidence that will impress interviewers.

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