Whether it's your first one or your 100th, going to a job interview can be a daunting task. No matter how well you know the job, you're bound to grow nervous just before they call you back to answer questions about your skills. While there's no sure way to prevent your palms from sweating or your heartbeat from speeding up a bit, coming to the office prepared can help boost your confidence. If you're wondering what to bring to an interview, these six items should always be at the top of your list.
Even if the person you're interviewing with already has your resume or the job doesn't require you to bring one, it's always best to have several copies on hand. If the job is entry-level and simply requires an application, handing the hiring manager a resume shows that you like to go above and beyond when it comes to work. If for some reason the interviewer forgets to bring a copy of your resume or has extra people on hand to help conduct the interview, you can show them how organized you are by handing out your extra copies. You may even glance it at as an occasional reminder so that you don't forget that Google AdWords certification or that Digital Marketing course you took.
Pen and Notepad
While the interviewer will probably write or print out any key information you need to take home with you, bringing your own pen and notepad is another way to show him or her that you come prepared. Naturally, having something to write with also allows you to take important notes without having to ask repetitive questions, such as the date of a second interview or a phone number for human resources.
Your interviewer may ask for references, or he or she may not think twice about them. Either way, come prepared with a list of at least three people who can vouch for your skills, work history, and general characteristics. Handing them over to the interviewer, even if he or she doesn't ask for them, shows that you are confident in your abilities.
Always be sure you have some sort of picture identification on you, such as a driver's license or college ID. You never know when you'll need to go through a security checkpoint in an office building. Plus, if the company likes you and hires you on the spot, you'll typically need to present identification to start the paperwork process.
Small Bottle of Water
During an interview, you typically do a lot of talking. It's easy for your mouth to dry out. Consider bringing a small bottle of water to sip discreetly for those long-winded moments. Never substitute caffeinated beverages, like coffee or soda, as they can irritate your stomach and impact your mood.
Names and Directions
Always write down the name of the person who will be conducting the interview, no matter how well you think you can remember it. You never know when your nerves will get the best of you. Also, include any specific directions to the location of the interview, such as office numbers.