Here at BuzzPlant, we almost always have at least one intern every semester. Over my years of interviewing interns, I thought it could be helpful to offer some pointers.

1. Resumes

The biggest thing I have to say about resumes is to make sure that your’s looks professional. I see quite a few resumes that are formatted poorly and don’t really express what experiences the candidate has. Take some time and look at examples that websites like Monster.com and CareerBuilder.com offer. Have business professionals and professors look at your resume and provide feedback. With all of the information and resources out there, there is no reason you shouldn’t have an informative, polished resume.

Another note about resumes, make sure you bring a copy with you when you go in for an interview. Even though you’ve sent it to the employer, they don’t always have it on them or forget to print it out. I’m amazed how many candidates don’t bring a resume with them. It’s also helpful for you to have a copy with you to be able to reference it throughout the interview.

2. Dress

It’s always better to overdress than under dress. Showing up in jeans and a shirt doesn’t cut it at a professional interview. You should, at the very least, wear a nice blouse/button up shirt and dress pants. You need to show the employer that you know how to look and dress professionally.

3. Personality/Character

You want to find a balance between being genuine and being aware of your faults. Be aware of some of your personality traits that might come off a bit strong. If you’re shy, know that you need to make an effort to talk more. Answering questions with short one or two word answers or “I don’t know” shows that you aren’t thinking questions through and it comes off as you not caring about the job. If you’re a talker, try to shorten your answers to avoid over talking. Also, Don’t stop your interviewer in the middle of a sentence to say something. It displays a lack of respect and an unwillingness to listen.

4. Be prepared.

Always know information and background about the company where you’re interviewing. You wouldn’t believe how many people show up and ask us what we do. We have a website with plenty of information on there. There’s no reason a candidate shouldn’t know what we do when we walk in the door. When you don’t know anything about the company, it tells the employer that you view the position as just a way to make a few bucks, not something you want to invest your time and energy. A company wants to know how you would be a benefit to their company. So always walk into an interview ready to answer the question, “Why this company?”

Think through answers to basic questions. If you have to think about what your strengths or weaknesses are, then you aren’t prepared. You should be thinking about why you want the position and why you want to work at that specific company before you walk in the door. Sometimes it helps to have a friend ask you some of those questions so you have practice talking through them.

Come ready to ask questions. Sometimes your questions will be answered, but you show more interest in the position and company when you ask questions.

We are constantly looking for interns, so if you’re interested, please contact us at [email protected]. We’d love to hear from you!