Tried and True Interview Advice

Viacom recently began our spring internship recruitment and interview process. Each member of the College Relations team holds around ten to fifteen interviews a day with internship candidates. That’s a lot of interviews! We wanted to compile a list of “Interview Prep” tips because after all it’s all about how you prepare. Whether you are interviewing for an internship or a job position these are great tips to keep in mind.

Do Your Research 

Make sure to do your research not only on the role you are applying for but also the overall company. Being informed will impress the recruiter and show how badly you want to work within their organization. At Viacom, we like to know that our candidates are familiar with our brands/channels. We’ve had applicants that bring up Bravo shows, or that don’t know Nickelodeon is a part of Viacom. This shows that the applicant did not prepare. Don’t be that person!

Appearance Counts 

Dress professionally even if you are having a phone interview. I know this sounds silly, but trust me, putting on a nice outfit comes through in multiple ways. It helps you embody a professional state of mind.

Phone Interviews

Make sure you are in a quiet area and that your cell reception is good. Speak clearly and slowly. Look at yourself in the mirror during the interview and make sure to smile. Believe it or not, we can hear when you are smiling. Since we can’t meet you in person, you need to make sure your personality comes through over the phone.

Be Early

Be 10-15 minutes early for the interview and be nice to everyone you meet during your time in the building (security, receptionists, assistants, etc.). News travels fast, and if you are rude to someone they may relay the message to the recruiter/manager. It’s a reflection of how you would treat other employees and no one wants to work with an unfriendly person.

Bring your Resume

Make sure the interviewer has the most updated version of your resume. Bring extra copies and keep one for yourself that you can reference throughout the interview if you get nervous. You should be prepared to describe the experiences listed on your resume in more detail. Also, you will want to make sure you can relate your past experiences to the responsibilities of the role you are applying for.

Stand Out

Make yourself stand out amongst the rest. Show your personality and passion and be able to speak about what you can bring to the table. Be confident, not cocky. If you have a unique skill, don’t be afraid to let it be known. Every team needs individuals that bring different insights and ideas.

Ask Questions

Prepare a list of questions to ask the recruiter (I recommend you prepare at least one). Remember this is as much an interview for you as it is for the company. If you have questions about the corporate culture or room for growth you will have the opportunity to get the answers straight from the source. Take advantage of that.


It’s important to end every interview by asking about the next steps. You want to make sure you know when and who to follow-up with. It’s proper etiquette for the applicant to follow-up after at 2 week time period if you have not been contacted.

Happy interviewing, everyone!


Andrea currently holds the position of Manager of College Relations for Viacom. Viacom is one of the world’s leading creators of entertainment content, with brands that engage and connect diverse audiences across television, online, mobile, games, virtual worlds and consumer products. With more than 160 channels worldwide, Viacom owns and operates favorites including MTV, VH1, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and many others. As Manager, Andrea recruits, interviews, and places intern candidates throughout Viacom’s brands and divisions. She also assists with the planning and facilitation of both internal and external events for the internship program including orientations, speaker/informational forums, and campus recruitment. Andrea is tasked with making and maintaining relationships with students and their schools, as well as the staff at Viacom. Connect with Andrea on Facebook and Twitter and learn more about the Viacom Internship Program.

Related posts:

  1. What to Take to an Interview
  2. Before the Interview, Do the Homework!
  3. Interesting Interview Questions from a Real COO

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