Job interviews are nerve-wracking for us all. The job application process can be draining and disheartening as you are waiting to hear back from potential employers. However, when you finally hear, it is exciting and a little terrifying. Initial thoughts will likely include, how am I going to get this job?
It’s normal to be nervous, as this interview could be an opportunity for your career to go down a new and exciting path. Separate yourself from the pack and make sure you’re ready to wow with these tips for success at interviews.
Do Your Research
Before you go into any interview, ensure you have prepared. It is impossible to know what questions they are going to ask, but you can prepare the common questions. Think about yourself and how you are going to meet the employer’s needs. Have a selection of stories to tell in the interview, of times where you experienced success and failure, and what you learned from these experiences.
Know the ins and out of the role you are applying for so you can speak closely to your experience in the past and explain what you can bring to the role. Practicing in front of the mirror is a great way to get comfortable speaking your answers out loud. It could also be a good idea to set up a practice interview with someone who works in the industry for feedback on your interview answers.
Research the employer thoroughly. Employers will often ask what makes you interested in the company and what you know about the company already. This is your chance to show off your knowledge of the employer, the competitors, and the industry.
Look the Part
Wear something smart and professional to the interview which makes you feel comfortable and confident. This does not necessarily mean to wear only black and white. Don’t be afraid to wear something colorful. This will be memorable to the interviewer. Style your hair in a way that makes you feel confident also. Check out Schwarzkopf’s guide on professional hairstyles for some inspiration.
Remember, your interview starts the second you walk into the building. Greet everyone you encounter with polite and positive body language. Take a deep breath before you enter the interview room to calm yourself. Check out some breathing exercises to boost your confidence before an interview, it can make all the difference. When you meet your interviewer, ensure you have a firm handshake and good eye contact. First impressions matter!
Answer Questions Effectively
It’s great if you are well prepared to answer the common questions but ensure you are answering with enthusiasm and passion. Give your potential employer a clear picture of who you really are. Be careful not to speak negatively about previous employers and present yourself as a positive person.
Mirror the language used in the job description to show you are like-minded and would easily slot into the workplace. If there are any questions that throw you, don’t be afraid to ask for clarification to give a more precise answer.
Always have some questions ready to ask at the end of the interview. Don’t ask bland questions just for the sake of it. Show that you have gone above and beyond with research, and you are genuinely curious about the goings-on in the company.
Ask questions about the day-to-day running of the company. Any questions you ask, should also inform whether you want to be part of the team. Read online about recent projects, mergers, or acquisitions and ask how the company plans to go forward with this and contribute afterwards with your visions for recent developments.
Establish Next Steps
Showing up to an interview is not enough to express your interest in a job. Don’t be afraid at the end of the interview to have a closing statement where you thank the interviewer for their time and reiterate your interest in working for the company. Sending an email afterwards with a similar sentiment is a way to make you stand out and show you want the job more than anyone else.
If you’re successful and get through to the next round of interviews, there is a possibility of doing some case study work. In which case, check out our great article on approaches to writing a successful essay.