"The interview starts the moment you enter the building," says Barbara Safani
, president of Career Solvers in Manhattan. Don't crack gum in the elevator, and be nice to the assistant, who may speak up if you're not.
Don't use an interview to find out about the company's basic products and services, which you should research in advance. Instead, "prepare questions about the company's culture and its most pressing business challenges," says career consultant Nancy Collamer.
"Sometimes it's more compelling to show
people what you've done," suggests Collamer. If you edited an online newsletter at your former job, print out a copy; if you organized a successful fund-raiser, bring promotional materials or a few photos in a binder.
After you're done:
Always send a handwritten thank-you note immediately after an interview, but "don't be canned," cautions Safani.