Getting into the workforce, whether before you start a family or after, always involves interviewing. Being good at the job interviewing process can mean the difference between getting the job and getting the flick.
Sometimes you don’t know when you’re doing something wrong in an interview, and sometimes you just don’t know what to is the right way to prepare.
Here are some guidelines to getting through your interview successfully.
- Do some background research on the company so you know what you’re talking about in the interview – having this knowledge will show the interviewer that you are genuinely interested in the company.
- Know about yourself – strengths, weaknesses, attributes, interests – so you can supply this information confidently and coherently.
- Practice your answers to general/normal questions so you don’t trip over your words when it comes to the real deal.
- Check in advance on parking or public transport and always choose the earlier option – you never want to be late, no reason is good enough. You should aim to be about 15 minutes early.
- Present yourself neatly and professionally – aim to dress to the same standard as the company, whether that is business, business-casual, or whatever level of formality is appropriate. Dressing less formally than the company would could be detrimental to your job prospects.
- Come prepared with a portfolio with your resume, other documents you might need, pen and paper for note taking. This shows preparedness and organisation.
- Be positive, enthusiastic, and smile at everyone you see.
- Give just the right amount of detail in responses to their questions – try not to be short with them, but don’t be long-winded either – be succinct but answer the question fully.
- Support your claims with examples – give them a strength of yours and then back it up with a past experience.
- Maintain eye contact and stay alert through the whole interview – you could need to draw on the information they’ve given at any time.
- Be confident, and if you’re not feeling confident, fake it. Tell yourself over and over that you are confident and perfect for the position. If you say it enough, it’ll start being true. There is a fine line between confident and arrogant, though, so be careful.
- Never bad-mouth previous employers, colleagues, or companies. If there’s any past conflict that may arise in the interview, try to put it in the most positive light without anyone coming off as the “bad guy”.
- Clearly show your interest in the position throughout the interview – don’t seem too eager to accept anything they say, but make it clear that you are serious about the position.
- Listen carefully to the whole question you are being asked – you don’t want to forget what they asked or answer a question you think you heard instead of what they’re actually looking for.
- Thank the interviewer/s with a follow-up email, phone call, or card – whichever is appropriate for the company. This shows enthusiasm and a real interest for the job.
Job interviewing doesn’t have to be hard; remember these guidelines and you should be well-prepared for any interview that might be involved in getting a job. So practice, prepare, and be positive, and you’ll get that job!