When you are unemployed and looking for a job, or already in employment but want to expand your horizons and put yourself forward for a new challenge, the hardest part of the entire process can often be the initial interview. No matter how informal the interviewers try to make the situation seem, there is something about the importance of creating a good impression in a matter of minutes that can really affect a person’s ability to perform to their best in a pressure situation. If you are a dedicated, hard working team player who never seems to be able secure the jobs that you want because you can’t seem to perfect your interview persona, then read up on these tips and tricks to absolutely nailing an interview. Mastering these simple changes can make the difference being hired and being passed up on.
Research The Company Beforehand
You need to win over the interviewers, making them believe that you are passionate about the job and working for their company. You cannot do this unless you know something about the job and the organisation. Don’t go in to the interview with little to no knowledge of the history and workings of the place! Read up on the biggest accomplishments of the company and be sure to casually drop your knowledge in conversation so that the interviewers pick up on your wider knowledge. It makes you look like a well-educated, well-informed potential employee and they will remember you for it.
The last thing you want to happen on the day of your interview is to cut the timing too fine and end up being late for your slot. This is most probably the worst possible first impression that anybody could give. Even if the bus was late or the train was delayed, the only thing that they will remember is that you were not committed enough to plan ahead and leave yourself with enough time to get to the interview at the appropriate hour. Do yourself a favour and plan to be 30 minute early for your interview. This helps in two ways: the first being that those 30 minutes will allow you to cope with any unforeseen delays; and the second being that it will show the interviewers that you really care about getting the job.
Don’t just sit back in your chair at the interview and answer the questions with single word answers. You need to try to create a flowing dialogue with the interviewers, to take the opportunity to create chemistry with them in the brief time that you’re there. Offer up appropriately long answers as well as being proactive by asking questions of them about the company and the job description. This inquisitive nature will impress the interviewers and allow them to see that you are not just here to try to pick up a paycheck; you are ready to get involved and immerse yourself in the company.
Rehearse Generic Answers
The nerves of an interview can sometimes get the better of a person and leave them a stuttering mess in front of their potential employers. To avoid this happening to you, it is really worth writing out answers for the most generic job interview questions and practising them in front of a mirror or in front of family and friends. Having these well-prepared answers in your back pocket can save you from awkward situations where your nerves can get the better of you. You can effectively go into autopilot and reel off a good answer whilst inside you can spend some time calming down and getting yourself together. Try not to sound too much like a robot though; keep it sounding natural and not too automatic!
Revise Your CV Beforehand
Let’s be honest, every single one of us has exaggerated things on our CVs to make us sound more impressive to potential employers. A feeling of dread can set in if you see an interviewer scanning your CV, about to ask a question about something you have included, and the problem is, you are not sure what is actually on there! Save yourself a lot of worry by reading through your CV beforehand and making sure you have an explanation for every single achievement or reference listed, and if it happens to be a little white lie, then you can prepare something to say that doesn’t sound completely unbelievable. As long as you have an answer to every query, you should be completely fine.