In order to make it to the interview stage, you will need a world-class CV and a great cover letter. Next is the sometimes ever so tedious job application process. Once this is done and dusted and you have secured your interviews, it is time to ensure you are well prepared, leave nothing to chance. These interview tips will help you stack the odds in your favour.
- Research the Company that will be interviewing you, please don’t just read the about us page, read everything you can find including their financial reports if they are available publicly. Research products and/or services offered and how they are performing in the market, browse the company’s social media pages to get abreast with current happenings and campaigns, this will make for a great conversation starter at the interview. Finally make sure you know and understand everything there is to know you know about the role you are interviewing for.
- Be prepared, this may be an obvious interview tip but it is important. You need to prepare well ahead of the actual interview and you need to know a few things ahead of the date including address, directions and travel time.
- Be presentable, ensure you are clean and well dressed, rather be formal in a casual environment than casual in a formal environment. Don’t overdo the make-up, perfume or cologne. Make sure that you carry breath mints.
- Be informed, if you know the names of your interviewer(s), google them and see if you can find public profiles more specifically their LinkedIn profile and familiarise yourself with their professional background, this will help a lot during the interview and also knowing a little more about a person may help reduce the nerves.
- Practise, how to look people in the eye respectfully without coming across as confrontational or creepy. Review possible questions that may be asked and practise answering them out loud. Historically you needed to practise a solid handshake, handshakes are now replaced by elbow bumps, don’t just walk in and stick out your elbow take your queue from the interviewer, a simple verbal greeting is enough for most people.
- Arrive early, not only will this make a good impression, it will also afford you the opportunity to get a lay of the land and to settle your nerves. Most employers will disqualify you for arriving late, its sets a bad first impression and candidates that arrive early will be deemed as more deserving.
- Remain calm, envision the interview going well, relax and take a few deep breaths. Be positive, smile and affirm to yourself that you got this!
- Carry a pen and notebook to write down key information, including questions you may think of while the interviewer is talking.
- Don’t, be cocky, too familiar, talk too much, use inappropriate language, flirt, appear desperate, or interrupt while the interviewer is talking. Maintain professional etiquette and remember you are getting judged in a lot more than just how you answer questions.
- Ask questions like what type of candidate they are looking for and how long it may take to decide on a candidate. If you don’t have any job-related questions, ask about the company, questions such as what the interviewers enjoy best about working there, show genuine interest.
Just being invited for an interview is pretty much an accomplishment in the current economic climate, if you make it this far then that is half the battle won. Remember to be prepared, relax, and enjoy the interview. You would not have been invited if the employer did not see something on your CV that convinced them you are a potential perfect fit.
Fun Fact – Interviews were invented by Thomas Edison in 1921 when created a written test to evaluate job candidates’ knowledge.