Your recruiter wants to be stalked.
Well, okay, maybe not stalked like you would Facebook stalk a love interest you met last Saturday night. Maybe they don’t want to file a restraining order.
But they do want you to research them thoroughly. They do want you to contact them. And they certainly want you to follow up.
General Mills recruiter Lisa Bormann specifically pointed out that recruiters want interview candidates to do their research and come to the interview with some background information on them, personally.
“We purposely have some of our recruiters make public LinkedIn profiles, so candidates can do research and know the background of their interviewer,” Bormann said. “We like people who do their due diligence.”
This means if you’re provided the name of your interviewer, you shouldn’t feel bad about plugging it into search engines and gathering intel on who you’ll be meeting with. Learn about their professional background and experiences or interests you might share. Maybe your interviewer has a background similar to yours: school, fraternity, volunteer assignments and much more.
Discover your commonalities… and make them clear to the recruiter before, during and after the interview.
Of course, be careful about being too forthcoming about your Googling them; don’t come out and say, “I saw that you have a background in journalism and worked at The Times! I interned there!” That can be creepy… and can start that restraining order process.
Instead, cleverly skirt around the shared connection. For instance, say: “Last summer, I did some editorial work at The Times.” Your interviewer is bound to smile and share that she worked there for three years after college. And just like that, you’ve established a more personal connection.
If your interviewer doesn’t pick up on the cue, then you need to move on. For whatever reason, she doesn’t want to talk about that connection at that moment. However, this can be a great mention for your thank you note or LinkedIn connection request following the interview.
Due diligence sets you apart. Hard work puts you at the top of the “Round 2″ list. Discovering commonalities can make you an insider. Get to work!
Good luck with your interview, and happy stalking—er, researching!
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at myFootpath!
This post was previously published on WetFeet.com and has been reprinted with permission. WetFeet provides career advice through their magazine, insider guide series, and website (WetFeet.com). Their mission is to equip job seekers with the advice, research, and inspiration to plan and achieve a successful career.