PNP Job Interview Tips

During Your PNP Job Interview


  • Treat all people you encounter with professionalism and kindness. That receptionist or administrative assistant or maintenance man may offer his or her opinion of you to the boss.
  • Use names and remember names. Don’t address the PNP job interviewer by his or her first name unless you are invited to.
  • Keep your guard up; maintain a steady state of manners and professionalism during the entire interview.  Don’t use slang, negative language, or judgment under any circumstance.
  • Don’t chew gum. Don’t take cell phone calls during an interview. If you carry a cell phone, turn it off during the interview to be sure it doesn’t ring.
  • Don’t ever interrupt the interviewer, even if you are anxious and enthusiastic about answering the question. Spend your time listening.
  • Be aware of your nonverbal behaviors – sit straight, smile as often as you can, maintain eye contact, lean forward but not invading the PNP job interviewer’s space. Sit still in your seat; avoid fidgeting and slouching.
  • Be confident and calm. Employers are interested in you and are looking to validate what they believe to be true, that you are a good fit.
  • Don’t make negative comments about previous employers or others.
  • Do not discuss other potential candidates or other job opportunities you are seeking.
  • Listen very carefully to each question you are asked and give thoughtful, to-the-point and honest answers. Answer each question concisely, with one example. Let the interviewers ask if they want elaboration or another example. Don’t talk too much.
  • If you are asked what your salary requirements are, respond with, “I am not sure, can you please let me know what your salary range is?” Do not tell them what you want; usually they will not pay you more than that.
  • When the interviewer concludes the interview, offer a firm handshake and make eye contact.
  • Think ahead to answer questions that ask for your mistakes or personal failings. Don’t answer them in a way that will make the employer doubt your abilities. Be honest about your mistakes, then end on a positive note by relating how you managed the situation.  Work on honesty, sincerity and candidness. When you start to tell a story, the interviewer may try to sort out the details by asking probing questions. If you were not honest, they will know.  Do not blame others or be judgmental of them.

Employers are looking for a good match, lower turnover rates, and increased job satisfaction and performance. Employers may ask open ended questions about how you handled previous situations in an effort to predict future behavior. Although it will be more difficult to prepare concrete answers in advance to these questions, you can and should take some time to review your understanding of yourself.

See the list of questions on the next pages and think about your answers.  Have someone ask you the open ended questions and probe the details.  Remember to be honest, positive and think about how much information is needed to address the questions.