The job interview is a strategic conversation with a purpose. Your goal is to convince the employer that you have the skills, background and ability to do the job and that you will fit into the organization. At the same time, learn as much as you can about the job, future career opportunities and the organization to determine if you really want the job. Your personality, confidence, enthusiasm, positive outlook and excellent interpersonal and communication skills count heavily in a job interview. An interview is not a completely objective process, and the selection is not based on skills alone. It’s a subjective encounter, and the qualified person the interviewer likes the best is most likely going to get the job. Some guidelines for the interview: Arrive 15 minutes early to the interview; on time is too late. Greet the interviewer by his or her last name with a smile and a firm handshake. Wait to be seated. Maintain good eye contact throughout the interview. This denotes confidence and truthfulness. Keep your discussion relevant to the job. Do not offer unnecessary personal information. Do not answer questions with a simple yes or no. Sell yourself by using examples, and paint a clear picture of where, when, how, what and why you gained the necessary skills to do the job. Stress your achievements, records and accomplishments. Answer all questions to the point. Do not ramble. Stay positive. Do not make derogatory remarks about previous or present employers. Do not request information on salary, commission, bonuses or vacation on the initial interview. Tell the employer what you are going to do for them, NOT what they can do for you. Always represent yourself honestly. At the conclusion of the interview, show your enthusiasm by emphasizing your interest in the position. Always send a thank you note after the interview — a personalized, hand-written note is best.