How Much Time to Prepare for a Job Interview

December 17th, 2009 by lewis

My clients often wonder, “How much time should I prepare for a job interview?” Susan Britton Whitcomb offers some excellent advice, in her book Interview Magic:

Lou Adler, author of Hire with Your Head, advises his candidates to spend 10 or more hours preparing for every interview. Although some of that time will be devoted to research, a good portion should be spent verbally practicing your responses. Having information in your head and articulating that information with your mouth are two very different activities. In even more grueling advice, some speech coaches claim that an hour of preparation is required for every minute you are on stage. Sound like hard work? Consider the return on investment you will reap. Divide your annual income by the number of hours you spend preparing for the interview. At an annual income of $50,000 a year, 10 hours of preparation equates to $5,000 an hour. At $100,000, it’s $10,000 an hour. And, once you’ve become comfortable with describing your success stories and strengths, 10 hours won’t be necessary for each and every interview.

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