A man vying for a vice presidency at a financial-services concern last year did a thorough Internet search about its four-member screening committee. He learned one member wrote a newspaper column about martial arts. He broke the ice at his interview by declaring that he was going to “break a stack of boards over his head in the executive’s honor,” recalls Sanjay Sathe, a friend and head of RiseSmart, an online job-search service for senior professionals and managers. “It showed the committee that this candidate had done his homework.”… You should intersperse colorful anecdotes about your experience with perceptive queries about the vacancy. The tactic “puts you on conversational terms with your interviewers, and also gives you a much-needed breather between the questions thrown your way,” Mr. Sathe suggests.