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Why Drilling Interview Questions is Important

        posted by , February 05, 2013

The word drill sounds like something from military basic training.

I am Gunnery Sergeant Hartman, your senior drill instructor. From now on you will speak only when spoken to, and the first and last words out of your filthy sewers will be sir.
~ Gunnery Sergeant Hartman, Full Metal Jacket
Most professionals are focused on more creative pursuits than drills. Drilling isn't generally a useful exercise ... with an important exception: when preparing for an interview.

Stop Studying, Start Polishing

People get the urge to study before interviews — to jam as many new facts in their head as they can. This is often a mistake (except for people who are changing careers or who are new graduates).

If you're an experienced professional, you probably have a great deal of knowledge already. You probably have career successes stacked high.

Jamming more facts in your head isn't going to help you much on your next interview. What will help is polishing your answers with practice interview questions.

Drilling helps you to map your career successes to common interview questions. It helps you to polish your answers so that your knowledge shines through. When you don't know the answer, it helps you to practice thinking on your feet.

It's unlikely that you'll practice the same questions that you'll be asked in your next interview. It doesn't matter, interviewing is a skill that can be improved. It's not about memorizing answers.

Your answers should tie to your personal experiences and successes. Memorizing new facts and regurgitating them in an interview isn't likely to impress.

This is an installment in the ongoing series of articles called how to win your next job

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