Interview Preparation: Company Intelligence

Interview preparation

Interviews are typically much more intimidating for the applicant than they are for the interviewer.  Not only do you have a lot more at stake, but as the facilitators of the meeting, they have the benefit of knowing the questions they will be asking.  They seem to have all of the answers, and you are being asked all the questions! While I can’t have a list of questions e-mailed to you the night before the big interview, I can show you how interview preparation can prepare you for the most likely questions you’ll get.  With just a little, targeted research, you can go into an interview, confident in your ability to answer almost any “curve ball” question like a seasoned pro.


The Technical Stuff

Generally speaking, you can find the majority of this information on the About Us or Our Story page of the company website, although for smaller companies, you may have to dig a little further.  Knowing the basics is huge, interview preparation is the key.  If you go into an interview without a solid understanding of the products and services you’re sunk.  Imagine an interviewer asking you what one thing you would do to improve the product and you suggest something they’ve been doing for years. Ouch! It’s also a good idea to know details like whether they are international or local, how customers can purchase their products (i.e. retail only or online), if they are publicly traded, size of company and net worth.  Essentially, you need to know the size and scope of the company you are interviewing for.  It’s crucial to understand their business as a whole, to be prepared for that curve ball question that requires you to give a suggestion or opinion based answer.

Mission and Culture

With some interview preparation you can gain an understanding of the heart of the company, and will tell you in what tone to answer your questions.  Look around on the website or their social media pages, to determine why they do what they do.  How do they intend to impact this world? What charities do they support? Is their packaging 25% recyclable? Pay special attention to their workforce culture.  If they are a relaxed company with a lot of silliness on their social media, let them see how you’d be a good fit by showing them your personality.  If they are more muted and professional, then bust out the suit and tie for the interview.  Show them from the start that you belong with them.

Who’s Who

The company website or social media should have some good information on the leaders of the company.  Do a quick search and get a general idea of who these key players are.  Also, research current events related to the company.  Try a Google search on the company and CEO, and hit “news” to see what headlines they have made lately. Find out what the public in general think of the company.  Are they on any top Employer lists? Is their product being recognized in the media? Do they have an impressive amount of Instagram followers? Also, who are their biggest competitors and what do they do well/not so well? This information is great for any type of question regarding why you chose to apply or what you hope to gain in your employment.  If you can attach to your response to a question, any information you have learned, you’ve made a huge impression!


Salary Research

It’s a good idea to not only research average salaries for the position you are applying for, but also the average salaries for key positions within the company.  Know what the boss makes and the position just below the one you are applying for? is a free resource you can use dig up some financial information.  Look for any benefit information the company may mention on their website. Knowing these facts and figures will help you to have a confident and intelligent discussion about salary and benefit expectations. For further help with interview preparation let us know at



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *