It doesn’t matter whether it’s your first interview or your 100th, every interview is different, so it’s important you’ve got the basics covered. Give yourself a head start against the competition with these seven pointers:
1. Body language
First impressions count and body language is key: maintain eye contact, give your interviewer a firm handshake and smile. Also, think about what’s appropriate to wear based on the company, the position and the interviewer. Remember: you should always look smart if you want to be taken seriously.
2. Be prepared
Research the business, the interviewer, and yourself. Find out as much as you can about the organisation – they’ll want to know why you want to work there and how much you know about the services or products they offer. Is the interviewer your line manager or director of the company? Find out so that you can tailor your answers appropriately. Know your CV inside out and back to front. Find out what type of interview you’ll be attending: is it one-to-one or a panel of interviewers? Will you have any tests to complete on the day or in advance? If you’re well researched in all areas, you’ll be more confident, and after all, confidence is key to success.
3. Be positive and be passionate
There’s nothing worse than hearing a potential employee be negative about their prior or current employers. Always try to frame your previous employment experiences in the best possible light and provide mature reasons for why you wish to leave your current job.
4. Prepare your unique selling point (USP)
Why should you get the job over someone else? A good way to prepare for this is to think of the three P’s: performance, potential, perseverance. Before your interview, understand the major skills you can bring to the role so you can sell yourself with confidence.
5. Ask questions
Think about things that would be useful to know, but are impossible to know from the outside. Why the position has become available, what the company culture is like and what training is offered are all good examples of questions that show you want to know more about the company and grow in your role.
6. Demonstrate with examples
When you’re answering questions, give examples of occasions where you can demonstrate the strengths you say you possess. It makes your claim more credible if you can give specific instances when you managed someone well or dealt with a tricky situation.
7. Practice, practice, practice
Think about your interview beforehand and make sure you have some time to think about everything above. That way you’ll be prepared and confident that you can answer and deal with everything that they throw at you.
If you do all these things well, you should have a much better chance of making a great impression and getting that job you want. Good luck!