Sometimes as students and job seekers we think employers are doing us a favor when they ask us to come in for an interview or extend to us job offer. We are often so thankful and grateful that we immediately say yes without asking really important questions. When you are invited for an interview it is perfectly acceptable to ask for a time that is suitable to your schedule. If you know that attending the interview may result in undue hardship or a major inconvenience you can ask your recruiter for an alternate date and time. Depending on your unique circumstances you may or may not choose disclose the reason for rescheduling , but it is perfectly acceptable state , “Unfortunately due to a previous commitment I will be unable to attend the interview at that time. Do you have any other dates and times available for us to have a conversation about this opportunity?”.
Another area where students often go with the flow is AFTER the offer has been extended. This is not the time to take whatever is presented to you. When you receive the offer request a minimum of 24 hours before you accept. Use that time to consider the pros and cons of the opportunity and think about more than salary. Review the benefits, location, training and overall organization culture. If you are unsure ask questions about any of these areas to ensure that you are making an informed decision. How an organization treats you prior to the acceptance of the offer is a good indication of how they will treat you once you agree to join the company.
This process should be mutually beneficial and not an area where only you or the employer gets what they want. Asking questions and negotiating schedules or additional time to make a decision is indicative of someone who is advocating on their own behalf. This is perfectly acceptable. It also helps in increasing your sense of confidence by providing a tool on how to navigate the often stressful process of finding an internship, co-op or full time job.