If there is one rule for what you need to know before you enter the room for an Interview it is this –
Know the company you are interviewing with
That’s it, go to their website (you have a browser right), read their “About Us” section, read their latest blog posts, see if they are in the news, follow them on LinkedIn and Twitter.
If I were to hazard a guess, that would probably take you about 30 – 45 minutes.
And here’s the benefit to you – halfway through that process you are going to realize whether you really want to work at this company or if you want to call back the recruiter and cancel the interview.
Both are completely acceptable decisions, up until that point you have not wasted anyone’s time.
But showing up to an interview without knowing that most basic of information shows that you – don’t care about the company, see this as just another job and not a career choice and really don’t want to be there.
Beyond wasting the person’s time that is interviewing you, you have completely wasted your time interviewing for a company that you don’t really care about.
Want more? Check out my book Code Your Way Up – available as an eBook or Paperback on Amazon (CAN and US). I’m also the co-host of the Remotely Prepared podcast.
One HR person always told me that even attending an interview is never a waste of time, whether you want the job or not….always pretend you really want it and work on your interview skills. This might help the interviewer who isn’t the greatest interviewer, and it will help you improve your interview skills. There is no really other way to practice our interview skills. I see their point, I see yours too…but I don’t know that it’s ever a waste, you can always find some fruit.
I don’t think it helps so much if one knows more than nothing about the company – unless we are talking about some sort of insiders information which is extremely important for the position in question, but that kind of information would not be put on the web site anyways. This is especially true for IT positions since what`s happening in the IT department and how it runs has no direct correlation with the business. In my mind, knowing a little bit about the company is more a sign of being polite rather than anything else.. just like one should know the name of the interviewer before entering the room.. Other than that, this knowledge does not really have any practical value most of the times.