BFW PICCongratulations! You have made it through the vetting process. They’ve checked your résumé, called your references, and scheduled an appointment for that all important in-person interview. This will be their first opportunity to see you in person, hear how you answer questions, and see how you present yourself.

Basically, they want to know if they will get a return on their investment in time, money, training, and the diminished production during your training period. Remember, they also have to take a seasoned employee away from their job to focus on your training. So they are under a great deal of pressure to hire the best candidate.

They know that résumés can be professionally written and tailored to specific jobs, but when you interview in person, they are seeing the “real deal.” Here are some tips that might help you land that job:

Research. Find out all you can about the company you are applying with – who they are, what they do, who is their competition, how long they’ve been around, and what their goals are. Research their reputation and how they earned it. Understand how they make profits. Talk to former and current employees. The more you know the better prepared you will be.

Getting There. Make sure you know exactly where the interview is taking place. Understand the best way to get there and, if you are driving, where to park. Showing up three to five minutes early will make a good impression.

Appearance. Be sure you are clean and well-groomed. Dress professionally according to the standards of the company and the position for which you are interviewing. Colognes, perfumes, and excessive make-up will distract from what you have to say.

Posture. Smile and walk with a sense of earnestness. Stand and sit up straight. Make eye contact. Keep your head up. By leaning slightly forward you convey an interest in your interviewer. Don’t cross your arms or legs, as this looks defensive. Project an image of confidence and openness. Your body language speaks louder than your words.

Show respect. Don’t just take their card American style and jam it in your pocket. Take a tip from the Japanese and read every word, and then make eye contact with an acknowledging nod and a smile. If you have multiple interviewers, leave the cards out on the table in front of you and arrange them according to where the interviewers are sitting so you will know their names – and do use their names when you address them. Remember to shut off you phone before you walk in.

Their Questions. Expect questions about your résumé, especially if you left a job in less than one year or had six months or more without work. Also expect questions about your professional long-term goals, what you liked and didn’t like about you past employers, and what your greatest accomplishments and challenges were. Give them examples of how you accepted responsibility and didn’t blame others, made improvements in your last company, met deadlines with a sense of urgency, and were a team player.

Your Questions. That’s right, you should have questions for them too. Some suggestions are: What are the opportunities for advancement? Where will the company be in five years? What kind of orientation and training are offered? This shows you are anticipating long-term employment with them.

Volunteered Information. They are naturally concerned about your stability. Although there are certain questions they may not ask, anything you volunteer that indicates stability would be to your advantage, such as you just purchased a house or have family in the area.

These are some of the things we looked for in an interview. We hope this inside information will help you land the right job!    

Who We Are

Michael Houlihan and Bonnie Harvey Barefoot Wine Founders

Michael Houlihan and Bonnie Harvey co-authored the New York Times bestselling business book, The Barefoot Spirit: How Hardship, Hustle, and Heart Built America’s #1 Wine Brand. The book has been selected as recommended reading in the CEO Library for CEO Forum, the C-Suite Book Club, and numerous university classes on business and entrepreneurship. It chronicles their humble beginnings from the laundry room of a rented Sonoma County farmhouse to the board room of E&J Gallo, who ultimately acquired their brand and engaged them as brand consultants. Barefoot is now the world’s largest wine brand.

Beginning with virtually no money and no wine industry experience, they employed innovative ideas to overcome obstacles, create new markets and forge strategic alliances. They pioneered Worthy Cause Marketing and performance-based compensation. They built an internationally bestselling brand and received their industry’s “Hot Brand” award for several consecutive years.

They offer their Guiding Principles for Success (GPS) to help entrepreneurs become successful. Their book, The Entrepreneurial Culture: 23 Ways To Engage and Empower Your People, helps corporations maximize the value of their human resources.

Currently they travel the world leading workshops, trainings, & keynoting at business schools, corporations, conferences. They are regular media guests and contributors to international publications and professional journals. They are C-Suite Network Advisors & Contributing Editors. Visit their popular brand building site at

To make inquiries for keynote speaking, trainings or consulting, please contact