Tips to Be Your Best at Your Next Job Interview

Getting called for a job interview is just the beginning of you receiving a job offer.  We want you to be at your best as we are living in a competitive world with many qualified candidates who also want your dream job.  Be the best possible applicant for whatever your dream role is.  Make sure your resume stands out and then show you are the best person for the job by communicating your education, experience and transferable skills in person. Demonstrate that you are the right person to be hired.

Here are a few ways to rock the job interview so that they hire you.

How to do your best at your next job interview

Show Interest in Being Hired

The number one priority for any hiring manager is to hire someone who is genuinely interested and excited to work with their company.  This can be started with a handshake and a great smile.  Don’t underestimate the power of a handshake and a smile.

People who are just looking for any job are not going to be a good long-term fit. To set yourself apart, you need to demonstrate that you are excited about the position and let them see you are eager to be hired.  Hiring managers want to hire employees that will be long term employees or excel immediately in the short term.  This will reduce hiring and training costs, as well as make departments run smoothly and efficiently.  Tell the interviewer that you have looked at the company’s website and name something specific about it that has interested you.

Be Honest and Upfront

Many people are nervous at job interviews.  This causes stress for both the person conducting the interview as well as the person being interviewed.  Be prepared for interview questions and practice responding to questions you think that they may ask.  Don’t make interviewers pry when they are asking for more information about your skills and experience. Don’t make them have to dig. When they ask a question, be forthcoming with your response. If you don’t know the answer, it really is okay for you to say, “I don’t know the answer to that, let me think about it, and we can circle back.” Lastly, make sure you’re always honest when answering questions. It’s better not to know, then to pretend to know.

Be Specific with Answers and Examples

This is your chance to shine!  When answering questions don’t respond with one-word answers or clichés.  When answering questions about skills and experience, share examples or relevant stories of professional experiences you have had.  Being able to quantify successes and achievements will be powerful.  For example, “in my last position at D &Y I exceeded sales targets by 13% or at D & Co I reduced errors in the department by 6%.” In other words, show, don’t tell.

Job Interview Tips

Be a Storyteller

One way to answer questions more engagingly is to use storytelling. Humans are conditioned to respond to stories. For example, rather than just saying you’re a team player, tell the interviewer about a time when you had to help your coworkers succeed. Rather than telling them you take initiative, talk about a time when you took charge and made something happen.

Be Yourself

Be yourself, be genuine.  Be the person a company will want to hire but also be yourself.  Let the interviewer get to know who you are.  Tell them a little about your interests and hobbies, because you want the company to know who they are hiring and that you’re a good fit for their team.

Send a Thank You Note

After an interview, send a handwritten note or email to an interviewer to thank them for their time and consideration.  You want them to think about you and know that you want this job opportunity or alternately, that you want to be considered for another position.

Good luck at your next job interview! Got the job? Here are some tips for starting off strong your first week. 

If you have any questions, please email our office at


What is a Statutory Holiday?

Statutory holiday days are great for employees – a day off with pay.  In British Columbia there are 10 statutory holiday days.  “Stat days” are provincially or federally legislated and provide a day off with pay to staff.

Statutory Holidays are as follows:

  • New Year’s Day, January 1st
  • Family Day, the third Monday in February
  • Good Friday, the first Sunday after the first full moon in Spring
  • Victoria Day, the last Monday in May before May 25th
  • Canada Day, July 1st
  • B.C. Day, the first Monday in August
  • Labour Day, the first Monday in September
  • Thanksgiving Day, the second Monday of October
  • Remembrance Day, November 11th
  • Christmas Day, December 25

***  Boxing Day, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday are not Statutory holidays.   ***

Please see a link to the Government of British Columbia for your reference and clarification.

Some people find this confusing because companies such as crown corporations may choose to make these days holidays as well at the company’s expense.

In order to qualify or be eligible for Statutory Holiday pay, an employee must have been both employed by a company for 30 days prior to the holiday, and also must have worked on 15 of the 30 days prior.

Statutory Holiday Pay is equal to one days pay.  If an employee works less than full time or has taken time off work, holiday pay is calculated with the following formula:

Total wages / number of days worked = Statutory holiday pay

If you work on a Statutory Holiday, you will be paid time and a half of your regular wage.

If you have any questions about qualifying for Statutory Pay feel free to call our office with questions or email our office at Looking for a job? Visit our current job openings! 

Starting a New Job – Tips for your First Week at Work

Congratulations on starting a new job!  With your job search ending, you can now file away those resumes and emails to recruiters and employment agencies.  Beginning a new job is both exciting and stressful for everyone.  Making a good impression, doing a great job, and being successful as you start the next step in your career is what we can speak about.

Here are tips for the first few days starting a new job:

Things To Do:

  • Be an active listener and soak in the culture of your new work environment.
  • Introduce yourself to co-workers to show that you are interested and don’t be shy. It might be easier to think of a one liner introduction to do this.  Brand yourself with a positive and professional introduction.
  • Ask questions as you learn. You aren’t expected to know everything right away so don’t be afraid to clarify things as you learn the new processes and procedures.
  • Take notes so that you can refer back to the things you are learning and write down less urgent questions that can be discussed later.
  • Make notes of people’s names that you are meeting to remind yourself later.
  • Take the initiative to join a committee or volunteer your time on internal or external events. Show that you are interested and will be a long-term employee.
  • Watch your co-workers and supervisors to learn who can be your mentor. Introduce yourself and plan coffee.
  • Check in with your boss or supervisor to confirm that you are progressing as expected. Use this time to ask the questions you have been keeping track of.

Things Not To Do:

  • Don’t over commit as you will be in the learning phase at work for at least six months of our new job.  Stay calm and organized.
  • Don’t be a “know it all”. If you have a great idea that can be implemented ask first “Have you tried this…”  Until you have gained trust and respect don’t come on too strong.  Prove that you know your job and that you do a great work.
  • Don’t speak negatively of prior bosses or companies. Stay professional and mind your business. Stay out of gossip, and groups.  It is a good idea to stay neutral if conversations turn to gossip, religion, or politics.
  • Don’t be late or call in sick. During the probation period it is essential that you prove yourself to be committed and reliable. Arrive a few minutes early each day and stay a little longer than your shift to be organized and make a good first impression.

This being said, we are excited for you to be starting a new job and wish you success!

For more job- and employment-related tips and tricks, follow us on Facebook. 

7 Steps to Land your Dream Job

When you know what your dream job is, but aren’t sure how to get it, we can help.  The career you want is the one you have passion for and find enjoyment doing.  It will provide you with work/life balance and you’ll enjoy work!  This being said, the path to land your dream job doesn’t just happen.  Having your ultimate career fall into place will only happen through time and effort with goals, planning and direction.

7 Steps to Land Your Dream Job

Here are seven steps to land your dream job:

1. Make Sure It’s Really your Dream Job

As you are starting your job search, take time to build a vision of the career you want.  Like a vision board, think big!  Know what you want – what gives you purpose, where you see value, want do you want to do?  After deciding on your career, speak to people you know and respect in the field. Ask them about their jobs, what they enjoy about their job and their career path.  Before doing these interviews, have a set of questions prepared and make notes to be able to refer to in the future. If possible, ask to shadow this person at work, or to volunteer with similar companies.


2. Create a Career Roadmap to Land Your Dream Job

Like all smart executives, to achieve your career goals you must start with a plan.  Begin with the end in mind, and imagine where you want your career to lead you.  Determine positions (job titles, duties, responsibilities etc.) and check points that you will pass along the way.  Your roadmap should outline each step as your career progresses.   

Your career path may include internships, entry level positions, or volunteer work as well as continued education or certification to gain skills and experience as your career develops.  Getting hands-on experience is imperative. It proves to hiring managers that you’ve experienced — not just read about — everything you need to know for your ultimate gig. It’ll also confirm your career choice to yourself. 

Make your career roadmap even more worthwhile by estimating how much time you should spend in each position. Review job descriptions and look for things you can do if you are looking for advancement, promotion or increased salary.  

Some goals will be easier to achieve, and some will be harder, but you will be forced to stretch, and that will advance you in your profession.    


3. Be the Person You Would Want to Hire and Work Your Way Up

In starting your new career journey, you may not have experience under your belt, so add value by being a “Rockstar” employee.  Get to work early each morning, maintain a professional appearance and be positive about your day ahead.  Ask questions, read and become involved with your industry. Ask for feedback and take time to learn how to be a better employee.  After employee reviews allow time to review and reflect on your Career Goals and Roadmap to ensure that you are headed in the right direction. Doing this will help you develop your skills and become an expert.


4. Grow Your Network

Go to your network for receiving and giving career advice.  You can do this through social media, as well as professionally. With LinkedIn I recommend you value the quality of your network over quantity. Start by connecting with people you know and trust; friends, colleagues, teachers and supervisors etc.  This will allow you connect personally and start conversations, whether it be to say hello, ask for a job recommendation or for advice.

The next step after building contacts is getting out and meeting with people.  This can be done by going to networking events, attending trade shows and industry events, as well as conferences. This also includes meeting contacts face to face (perhaps over coffee or lunch). 

5. Partner with an Employment Agency

There are a number of reasons to work with an Employment Agency. Employment agencies can help you land your dream job by:

  • Allowing you to access their broad pool of clients and positions they are hiring for
  • Being a second set of eyes finding jobs for you
  • Providing assistance with interview tips and preparation 
  • Providing assistance with salary negotiation 
  • Providing insight to the culture of the company that is hiring
  • It is free, there is nothing to lose!

6. Craft your Personal Brand

You have your own story to tell, which includes goals, skills and expertise; this is your identity and value add.  In starting to create your personal brand consider the following about yourself:

  • Who are you – areas of strengths and expertise, what are you passionate about?
  • Decide what you want to be known for – this is your roadmap  
  • What is your value proposition?
  • What industry do you want to work in?

Your Personal Brand is generally one or two sentences, creating a statement of who you are, like a catchphrase with flare.  I like to think of it as your elevator pitch.  

7. Before an Interview Prepare Creative, Insightful Questions 

Although you are the person being interviewed, take the time at the end of the interview to ask questions. It’s important to determine if this job opportunity that will lead to your dream job. When asking questions in a job interview, make sure they are tailored to the job that you are interviewing for. Here are a few examples you can prepare specific to the job you are considering:

  • Is there anything about this position that wasn’t advertised that you are looking for?
  • What is the most important thing I can do to be successful?
  • In this role (at company ABC) how do you evaluate performance?
  • What is the key to succeeding in this role?
  • Tell me about the team I will be working with?

With these interview questions you will confirm your interest and professionalism.

If you have questions, feel free to email Andrea directly at or visit our job board for current employment opportunities.

Now, get out there, and land your dream job!



3 Ways to Motivate Your Employees to Give Back and Volunteer

As organizations increasingly incorporate philanthropy into their corporate culture and values, the onus is placed on the employees to get involved and participate in giving back to and volunteering within their communities.

In order to truly support the act of giving within your teams, your employees need to feel supported by their employers in their initiatives to contribute to their communities on behalf of your company’s culture of giving.  Here are three ways to encourage and motivate your employees to give back through volunteering and community giving


Give them the time to go out and do the work


If you want your company brand to be one of giving, then any and all activities need to happen on company time. Employers may decide to have evening or weekend events to support the community and expect their employees to give up


from their personal time in order to participate in building up both the community and the company brand.

Instead, respect your employee’s right to maintain their work/life balance by allowing your teams to take a few hours each quarter to give back to the community.

A few examples of volunteer initiatives include rounding up your various departments and organizing a garbage cleanup at a local park near your office and/or sending employees to a local elementary, high school, after-school program to contribute their knowledge and skills through mentoring, tutoring, or reading.  Here are a few links to check out – Volunteering with the City of Vancouver,  or helping out at the Greater  Vancouver Food Bank. the SPCA or the Red Cross.

Give them the resources to contribute

A few popular ways for companies to give back to those in need is to run bottle drives and other recycling projects, collect non-perishable food items to donate to their local food bank, or to host a fundraising campaign internally or externally for a specific cause.

As an alternative to these programs, provide your employees with a budget allowance to manage a giving program of their choosing. For example, instead of asking for cans to donate to a food bank, give each department a small budget to cook a hot meal together for a family in need. By providing your teams with the resources they need to give back, you are signaling that you truly believe in the importance of generosity.  The Ronald McDonald House and The Health and Home Care Society do a great job of this.

Give them the autonomy to give back how they want

Instead of micromanaging the act of giving, allow your teams to come up with creative ways to do good. It’s an excellent way for your people to take initiative, manage themselves, develop their relationships with their colleagues, and ultimately feel respected and valued by their employers.

Some examples of giving initiatives that I’ve seen success with in the past include:

  1. Putting together toiletry bags to give to those in need
  2. Stopping by a seniors’ facility to spend an hour with someone who may not receive a lot of visitors and daily interaction
  3. Selecting one local community organization close to my heart and sponsoring an event to support their overall objectives
Over to you

While giving back has its obvious benefits to those you help, it’s also important to acknowledge that the above initiatives will play an integral role in enhancing your overall organization through skill-building, team-bonding, and employee happiness.

These are a great way to help!

For more recruiting and HR tips and advice from Natasha, follow her on Instagram, connect with her on LinkedIn, and follow Career Contacts on LinkedIn.

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