Ultimate Guide To Being Better At Job Interviews6 mins - Introduction
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.