How Do I Respond to a Request for a Personal Job Interview?

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The purpose of a job interview is to ask job applicants in-depth questions about their work history, education and career goals. Job interviews typically fall into two basic categories: screening and selection. A screening interview determines whether a candidate is skilled enough to perform a job. A selection interview is conducted by a hiring manager and determines whether a candidate might be a strong fit for a company. When responding to a request for a personal job interview, remain professional and respond in the same fashion.

Respond to the invitation using the same mode of communication used to extend it. For example, if a hiring manager contacts you by phone, respond by phone.

Thank the hiring manager for inviting you in for an interview. Mention the exact position and briefly outline the qualifications you bring. For example, “I am enthusiastic about this opportunity to meet with you to discuss further the staff writer position. Considering your company's emphasis on cutting edge storytelling and well-developed research skills, I believe that my career goals perfectly coincide with your company’s needs.”

Approve the details of the interview. If you plan to arrive early, say so. For example, “I will arrive 15 minutes prior to our 1:00 p.m. interview on Wednesday, June 18, 2011.”

Offer to bring a hard-copy resume and cover letter, a portfolio or recommendation letters if necessary.

Thank the interviewer for considering you for the position. Briefly reiterate why you are the perfect candidate for the position. Show that you respect the hiring manager’s time by limiting your response to no more than one to two sentences.

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