The Second Interview Preparation Starts During The First Interview

It goes without saying that being called back in for a second interview indicates you performed quite well during the first round of interviews for the position. That being said, there is still prep work to be completed prior to this second round in order to maximize your chances of receiving a job offer. Some of that prep work actually takes place during the first interview. Here are a few tips that will help you ready yourself for a second interview.

Practice Active Listening

Pay close attention to what your interviewer is saying, so you can get lots of information out of the first interview. You’ll learn more about the company, its business structure, and the different people with whom you meet in the interview. It’s important to remember that you’ll remember more of what you hear and discuss during the interview if your nerves are under control.

Active listening is critical to being “in the moment.” Not only does this promote strong performance in your first interview, but it will also help you prepare for the second interview.

Take Notes during the Interview

Don’t spend all your time scribbling notes in the interview, as this will be a distraction for both you and the interviewer, but do take some notes in order to jog your memory later. You should make note of the interviewer’s names, job title, and role(s) in the company. Notes taken on the organizational structure, business operations or any major clients mentioned in the course of your conversations will help you later, as well.

Not only is it important to have the information on various aspects of the business and the key players in the company to help you recall details before attending a second interview, but you’ll also be able to do some additional research that will help you have a higher quality conversation. Researching a company, the individuals with whom you meet, and the specific job for which you’re being considered all help you elevate your performance during an interview, whether it’s the first or the final. Other topics that you can do follow up research on include:

Collect Business Cards

Many interviewers readily hand out their business cards to candidates. If they don’t, feel free to ask the interviewer for a card or ask the receptionist or the human resources staff member before you leave for the contact information of the people with whom you’ve met. You’ll want to send thank you notes or emails to them, thanking them for investing the time to meet with you.

Keep Everything Organized

Start a file folder at home for each of the interviews you complete. Within that file, you should have all your research on the company and the job. It should also contain all your notes from the interview, business cards you collected, thank you letters you sent and other related correspondence. A well organized filing system allows you to easily access all this information if you’re called for a second interview.

After completing the first round of interviews, spend a little time expanding on the notes you took during these early conversations. Include any follow up questions you may wish to ask during a second interview. Identify areas and topics on which you could conduct additional research in order to prepare your questions for the second interview.

Treat the Interview as a Step in a Larger Process

Ensure you present yourself in professional manner throughout the first interview, from the moment you walk in the front door to the minute you leave. Send thank you emails or notes to the interviewers so they know you’re still interested in the job. Take the time to thank the interviewer and HR representative for meeting with you. Be kind and polite to the receptionist. All of these things improve your chances of being called back in for a second round interview.

Preparation Starts Here

Adequate preparation is critical to success in a job interview. Part of that preparation occurs during your first interview. Take advantage of the opportunity presented to you. Use that first interview, and all of the information obtained from it, to better prepare yourself for performing well in the second interview.

To learn more about effective interview preparation, and best practices you can utilize, go to