Most people find Job Interviews to be difficult, nerve wracking and stressful, but they are a necessary evil of becoming employed. It’s okay to be anxious and nervous before an interview, it proves that you want the job and are taking it seriously, but this anxiety should ease off a few minutes into the interview. The key to success is that you have to be prepared; you can’t just wing it on the day and hope for the best.
Check out a few of these helpful tips to get you through the interview process:
Research the Company
Before your interview, you should take the time to find out about the company you are applying for. When was the business started? What does it do? Who are the customers? Knowing even a little bit about the company will help you to ask and answer any questions during the interview. By researching the business, it will show that you are serious about the job and want to do well.
Make a list of questions that might be asked in an interview (you can jump on the internet and pick some) and get your friends and family to help with a mock interview. This will help settle nerves and give you a chance to work out answers to give in the real interview. Do these mock interviews as many times as you like, come up with several different answers and use different questions or phrasing each time, so when you get to the real interview you will be prepared to answer any question they ask.
Know Your Resume
- Make sure that you know everything that is on your resume. Be up to date on all relevant experience and previous jobs, you don’t want to be asked a question about your resume and then not know the answer.
- Be prepared to discuss; with examples some main attributes and experiences that make you a great employee for the company. If you have done research on the company, these strengths should also be closely aligned to the key traits the employer is looking for in a person to fill their position.
- It is also a good idea to bring along an extra copy or two of your resume just in case.
Plan Your Outfit
- The day before your interview plan the outfit you will wear. You don’t want to have to scramble at the last minute to find something appropriate to wear, and stress yourself out more.
- Regardless of the type of job or your position you are interviewing for first impressions are very important and you want to come across as professional right from the beginning, so wear something that is business or business casual depending on the company.
- For all interviews, you should arrive at least 15 – 30 minutes early. This gives you time to de-stress so you can be calm and collected throughout the interview.
- Make sure you know exactly where you are going and how long it will take to arrive at the business. If you are unsure of where you are going do a test run sometime before the interview, this will ensure no extra stress is placed upon you. It will also give you the chance the check out the parking situation.
- First impressions, positive or negative, will affect your overall evaluation. You can make or break an interview in just the first 5 minutes. Therefore, it is important to smile and say hello to everyone, positive reactions from the other staff members can be just as important as the actual interview.
- Stay alert and attentive both before and during the interview. Maintain good eye contact, sit straight in your chair, don’t fidget and show high levels of interest. This will help you maintain or generate momentum so that your interview runs as smoothly as possible.
- Don’t become arrogant. No matter how well you think the interview is going or how perfect you are for the job, a presumptuous or overbearing attitude will reflect negatively on you. There is a fine line between confidence and arrogance, be mindful not to cross it.
Listen and Ask Questions
- The most effective job interviews are those where an active two-way conversation takes place. Don’t interrupt the interviewer when they are talking, wait for them to finish, gather your thoughts and then respond.
- At the end of the interview many interviewers will ask if you have any questions, this is where your research you did on the company will pay off. A few strategic questions can demonstrate intelligence, analytical skills and assertiveness. You can also ask questions on any of the questions they have asked you or on other information that they have given you. Prepare several questions to ask beforehand that way, you will already have some to fall back on if you can’t think of any during the interview.