A post from Jason Womack on "being ready" made me think of the importance of doing your homework before a job interview. I've been interviewing a lot of candidates recently, and you can really tell the difference between those who take the time to not only become familiar with your company, but also spend time thinking about how they would integrate with your company.
This is more than figuring out what they key products are, what messaging is on the web site, or what recent press releases have hit the wire.
For me, the candidates that really stand out go beyond cursory research. For example, I've encountered candidates who have prepared a document with their thoughts on our company's strategy versus our key competitors' - with recommendations for how to make our company more competitive. I've also run across people who have called our company asking for information from our Sales team to see how we position ourselves, what business problems we solve, and how we engage with prospects.
The difference wasn't in what these folks knew or that they'd put forth the extra effort (though that tells you something about a person). No, the key difference was in their ability to engage in a meaningful discussion during the interview process. They behaved like informed members of my team, which made it even easier to envision what it's like to work with them.
So, if you are interviewing and want to stand out, get beyond a scan of the web site, engage with the company you want to work for, and bring informed passion to your interview.