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Ultimate Guide To Being Better At Job Interviews

6 mins - Introduction img

You’ve put together a killer resume and spend ages filling in the application form. The hard part is over, right? Wrong! Now you’ve got to make go through the interview process. Interviews are for businesses to gauge whether potential employees are suitable for the position. Impressing them on paper is one thing, but first impressions are everything. People lose sleep over job interviews, but knowing how to stand out makes all the difference.

Turning to Google will help in some situations, but knowing commonly asked questions isn’t enough. Think about how many people do the same thing, and you’ll understand why you need to go the extra mile. Ready to ace that interview? Here’s how.

Appearance Matters

You wouldn’t go on a first date wearing stained clothes, would you? If you think of every interview as the first date you’ve been waiting for, then you’ll dress to impress. Ensure every item of clothing is clean, ironed and appropriate for the company.

Some businesses expect you to dress in formal wear, while others have a smart casual policy. Ask around if you need some advice, or see if the company has a photo gallery on their website. That way you can ensure you make the right impression and show you’ll fit in well with the team.

Company owners notice the little things, so make sure you wash your hair, your shoes are clean and nails are manicured. If you don’t look professional, then no amount of talking will impress your potential employer.

Know Who You’re Talking To

Every company has its own way of working and likes things to be done a certain way. Some business owners prefer to keep things strictly professional, while others enjoy a friendly collaborative approach. Before you think about the questions, do some research on the company.

Who Are They?

When you attend an interview, the panel isn’t just interested in your experience. They’ll be assessing whether you’ll fit in well with the team and how they prefer to work. The best way to know how to come across in the interview is by looking at their blog and social media. Platforms such as Twitter will show you how team members interact with each other. Do they enjoy joking and teasing? If so you know it’s OK to be light-hearted in the interview room.

What’s Missing?

You’ll never find negative things about a company on their website, but you will from customer reviews. One question potential employers always ask, is “what can you bring to the company?” If you know what they’re missing, then you’ll be able to offer an answer that will impress them.

What Do They Want?

There isn’t just one type of interview, but many. Some companies like to ask a set of questions about your experience, but others prefer an informal chat. Ask the company what type of interview it will be and prepare. This useful guide will get you ready for any style of interview.

Preparation Is Key

The most successful people are often the ones who have self-confidence. There’s nothing more important than your state of mind and not believing in yourself means potential employers won’t believe in you either.

Know Your Story

Instead of going through potential questions, think about your career history and remember your accomplishments. While it’s important to answer the questions well, it’s essential you can talk about yourself.

Fill In The Gaps

Sometimes you’ll need to think about a question, but never say “Hmm” or “I don’t know”. Instead, create a go-to phrase to buy yourself some time. For example, “That’s a great question, I’d have to say..” This way you can think of an answer and keep an air of confidence.

Remember Your Body Language

Body language is so important, and HR professionals know what yours means. People that sit with their arms folded seem like they’re unapproachable and playing with your hands symbolizes nerves. Make sure you practice sitting with your hands open and remember a smile is worth 100 words!

Rest Before

Get a good nights sleep before your interview and don’t leave everything to the last minute. The last thing you want to do is yawn through the questions, so rest up and make sure you look refreshed on the day.

The Questions

Ever thought you knew it all then realized you know nothing? One of the worst parts of an interview is thinking you can answer a question, then finding out you’ve done it all wrong. If you’re talking about accomplishments and success rates, make sure you can back it up with statistics and percentages.

Always practice before your interview with a friend or family member. Mock interviews will help you see your weaknesses and come up with effective answers. They ask some to trip you up, so prepare for them! Here are the most feared questions, and how to give an impressive answer.

What’s Your Biggest Weakness?

It’s one question that everyone fears because nobody ever knows how to answer it! Never make the mistake of telling potential employers you’re too much of a perfectionist or you work too hard. They want to know if you’re able to evaluate your weaknesses, so don’t be shy to tell them the truth. However, always explain how you’re taking steps to improve on things.

Tell us About Yourself

Employers don’t care about how many brothers and sister you have or your favorite food. When answering the question, give them a brief background, talk about your strengths and sell yourself. It need not be a long answer, but make sure when you speak you sound confident. Practice beforehand and ensure you’re ready before the interview.

Why Do You Want To Work For Us?

This question shows how much you know about the company. Talking about why you chose the job role isn’t enough, so learn about the company. Maybe they have a great incentive program, or perhaps they’re an industry leader. Impress them with how much you know about them.

Assertive Means You’re Worth It

When interviewers have asked you everything, they’ll let you ask them some questions. Make sure you have at least two thoughtful questions to ask them because it shows you’re interested in the role. Always thank them for meeting you and don’t be afraid to send a thank-you email too.

Job interviews can be a great experience if you prepare yourself and do your homework. Now you’re ready to take a step up the career ladder.

Basics 13 items — 92 mins
2
4 mins — Basics

What Is the Purpose of Job Interviews?

Job interviews provide a face-to-face meeting between a hiring manager and a prospect. Traditionally, this meant the interviewer asked all of the questions while the interviewee responded in kind. Interviews involve transfers of information between both parties as a conversation in a contemporary setting.

nexxt.com
3
12 mins — Basics

Why Interviews are Important

The interviews are important because they help the experts know who is efficient and who is not. Not just this, but also you get to know the other different traits of the applicants, thus helping in judging better who will be able to be good in the particular field.

wisestep.com
4
7 mins — Basics

What Happens at Job Interviews?

Job interviews are usually preceded by the evaluation of CVs submitted by candidates who have applied for a particular job role; recruiters/employers usually invite the best of these candidates to interview. The job interview is considered one of the most useful tools in evaluating potential employees.

co.uk
5
6 mins — Basics

Types of Job Interviews

There are several different types of interviews, but they all serve the same purpose of letting interviewers evaluate your skills, knowledge, experience, education, and personality to determine if you’re right for the position. Depending on the type of job you’re applying for, you will most likely go through various kinds of interviews.

careerthinker.com
6
5 mins — Basics

Stages of a Job Interview

Understanding the steps in the interview process will help your company standardize its interview process; leading to better, more qualified hires over the long term.

Why is this the case?

Standardizing your interview process helps interviewers and recruiters make fairer comparisons between candidates, as each candidate will be subjected to the same interview process.

newtonsoftware.com
7
6 mins — Basics

Questions to Ask Before Your Job Interview

To that end, once you’ve received that sought-after phone call from human resources and you’ve interviews inked into the day-planner, it’s no time for relaxation. The vast majority of interview prep is about due diligence.

forbes.com
8
6 mins — Basics

How to Prepare for Your Job Interview

Now that you have an interview, there are certain things you will want to do in advance to prepare for it. This article will provide practical tips on how to prepare for a job interview. Remember, you never get a second chance to make a first impression, so you’ll want to do your best in preparing for your interview in advance.

theundercoverrecruiter.com
9
9 mins — Basics

Job Interview Questions You Should Be Prepared to Answer

The best way to for anything is to do your research ahead of time–which is why we’re here to help. If you’re preparing for a big interview, prepping beforehand with these 15 interview questions will help you get one step closer to that dream job.

glassdoor.com
10
6 mins — Basics

Things Interviewers Always Notice

Obviously, you can never know exactly what little things your interviewer will notice or care about, but there are a few “big” little things that you can easily address to help your interviewer focus more on you and your capabilities (and less on nitpicking details).

themuse.com
11
7 mins — Basics

How to Make the Best First Impression

In less than one-tenth of a second of seeing someone for the first time, our brain processes information about the person’s face—which leads to quick conclusions about a new acquaintance’s qualities, including trustworthiness, competency, friendliness, honesty and morality—according to a 2006 study published in Psychological Science.

time.com
12
10 mins — Basics

What to do When You Don't Hear Back After a Job Interview

Employers, like most other humans, “are self-interested and rational,” he adds. If they desire a candidate, they will pursue them with fervor; if they do not, they won’t. “And while they are otherwise occupied with the candidates they covet, telling others that they won’t be pursuing them and why is not only uncomfortable (for all parties), it potentially exposes them to legal action,” he says. “As a result, often times mum’s the word.”

forbes.com
13
4 mins — Basics

When Should You Follow Up After a Job Interview?

If no timeline or sense of next steps is given upon exiting the interview, allow at least 4-5 business days (a week) before following up, as it’s likely that they are interviewing additional candidates and haven’t yet made a decision. Over-eagerness bordering on impatience will not do anything positive for your chances.

bklynresumestudio.com
14
10 mins — Basics

How to Follow Up After an Interview

This guide will show you:

— How to write a follow-up email after an interview better than 9 out of 10 others.
— What to write in your interview follow-up email depending on the scenario (first interview, second interview, phone interview, or after no response).
— Sample follow-up emails you can copy, adjust, and use today to make hiring you a no-brainer.

zety.com
Advanced 7 items — 45 mins
15
8 mins — Advanced

How to Calm Your Interview Nerves

Maybe it’s a few hours away, maybe it’s only minutes, but regardless, you want to do something to get yourself back in cool and collected mode before it happens.

Good thing you’re reading this, because we have 12 things you can try right now to calm all those interview nerves—one of them is bound to work.

themuse.com
16
7 mins — Basics

Tips to Stay Calm During an Interview

There’s no denying that interviews are crucial in clinching most jobs — and beyond the initial burst of adrenaline, nerves won’t do you much good. Here are nine tips from career experts at colleges and universities across the country on how you can stay calm and give a confident, commanding interview.

huffpost.com
17
7 mins — Advanced

Body Language Tips for Your Job Interview

Job interviews are notorious tightrope walks. You want to be confident, but not obnoxious; intelligent but not a know-it-all. Trying to find a balance and also explain why you deserve a job is hard enough. But what if your body language could help you out?

mashable.com
18
7 mins — Advanced

Words You Should Never Use In A Job Interview

Receiving an invitation for a job interview can be an exciting time – especially after you’ve been job-searching for a while. Unfortunately, it’s all too easy to kill off all your chances of getting a job by saying just a few wrong words during your job interview. To make sure your job interview leads to the next round or a job offer, here’s a list of words which you should aim to avoid.

lifehack.org
19
5 mins — Advanced

Job Interview Mistakes to Avoid

In previous jobs, and now in my role as a managing editor at CNBC, I’ve conducted dozens of job interviews. I’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly, and I’m consistently amazed at the very basic things that candidates screw up. Here are the most common interview mistakes I see people make.

cnbc.com
20
5 mins — Advanced

Things You Need For A Successful Second Interview

It’s pretty certain that in the second interview more senior-level staff will be conducting the interviews and while they may ask similar or the same questions that were asked in the first interview, the purpose of this interview is to compare you and your skillset with the other candidates.

The second interview presents a chance to have a deeper conversation about the job with some of the key players.

glassdoor.com
21
6 mins — Advanced

How to Succeed at Your Second Interview

In a second interview, you should expect more in-depth discussion about how you will operate in the role. By this point, you will have already had an introduction with the employer during an application, phone screen or first interview. Your second interview is to solidify your standing as a strong candidate by showcasing your experience, skills and knowledge about the business and the problems they’re facing.

indeed.com
Expert 6 items — 44 mins
22
5 mins — Expert

Best Interview Attire for Women

If you’re wondering what to wear on an interview, the most important thing to keep in mind is that you should look professional and polished regardless of the type of job you’re seeking. While your interview attire depends on the job you’re applying for, no matter what the position, and even if there’s no dress code, you should come in looking neat, tidy, and well-dressed.

thebalancecareers.com
23
5 mins — Expert

Appropriate Interview Attire for Men

First impressions are key, and it’s imperative to make a great first impression on your potential employer. A huge part of making a good first impression is dressing for success. Here’s interview attire for men, that will help you make the best impact on a prospective employer.

thebalancecareers.com
24
11 mins — Expert

How to Answer the Most Common Interview Questions

While we don’t recommend having a canned response for every interview question (in fact, please don’t), we do recommend spending some time getting comfortable with what you might be asked, what hiring managers are really looking for in your responses, and what it takes to show that you’re the right man or woman for the job.

Consider this list your interview question study guide.

themuse.com
25
6 mins — Expert

Key Issues You're Being Judged on in Your Job Interviews

Most professionals understand that they are being critiqued during the interview experience, but do we really know what we’re being judged about, exactly? What are the key criteria hiring managers are looking for that we may not be aware of?

forbes.com
26
10 mins — Expert

How to Negotiate Salary

Whether you’re male or female, in your first job or your fifth, it’s time to learn how to negotiate. And we’re here to help, with a roundup of expert tips and further reading to get you totally prepped.

themuse.com
27
7 mins — Expert

Looking For a Job? Highlight Your Ability, Not Your Experience

Very few of us hold jobs that line up directly with our past experiences or what we studied in college. Take TED Resident Jason Shen; he studied biology but later became a product manager at a tech company. In this quick, insightful talk about human potential, Shen shares some new thinking on how job seekers can make themselves more attractive — and why employers should look for ability over credentials.

youtube.com
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